Michel Sardou Overview
Michel Sardou (born January 26, 1947) is a French French people singer.
He was born in Paris, the son of Fernand Sardou and Jackie Rollin (Jackie Sardou). Contrary to claims common towards the beginning of his career, he is not the grandson of the dramatist Victorien Sardou. However, he is the father of the French novelist Romain Sardou, and the actor Davy Sardou.
He is known not only for his love songs ("La Maladie d'Amour"), but also for songs dealing with various social and political issues, such as the rights of women in Islamic countries, clerical celibacy, colonialism and the death penalty. Another sometimes controversial theme found in some of his songs ("Les Ricains" and "Monsieur le Président de France" for example) is his respect and support for the culture and foreign policies of the United States. He has focused his full attention on his homeland, ignoring the prospect of an international audience, although his 1981 single "Les Lacs du Connemara" did manage to become a big international hit. A number of his hit songs were written in collaboration with Jacques Revaux, a few others (most notably "En
Chantant") with Italian singer Toto Cutugno.
Even in the 21st century, Michel Sardou remains quite po***r in France, selling out 18 consecutive dates at Palais Omnisports de Paris-Bercy in 2001, while his 2004 album "Du plaisir" went straight to the no. 1 spot on the French album charts.
He has been married three times; first (1965–1977) to a dancer Françoise Pettré, the mother of his daughters Sandrine (b. 1970) and Cynthia (b. 1973); then (1977–1998) to Elizabeth "Babette" Haas, the mother of his sons Romain (b. 1974) who is a writer and Davy (b. 1978) who is a comedian; and lastly to a lifelong friend Anne-Marie Périer (the daughter of the actor François Périer) who was the editor of the French version of Elle Elle (magazine) magazine.
He is the heir to a long family tradition of spectacle. Indeed, his paternal grandparents were comic actors in Marseille; his grand mother was a dancer. When he was a child, he spent the most of his time in cabarets or on tour with his parents.
His school situation was not brilliant and he carried out a life behind the scene and in theaters, so he decided to stop his studies. In 1963, at 16 years old, he planned to run away in Brazil in order to open a Strip-tease club. His father caught him at the Airport. Then Michel announced to him his desire to work and to leave school.
While he was a waiter in his father's cabaret, he was earning his spurs on stage, he met Michel Fugain and had an audition for Eddie Barclay.
The early stages (1965 - 1970)
In 1965, Michel began to sing with Le Madras, co-written with Michel Fugain and Patrice Laffont. Thanks to this song, he could be on TV for the first time but then he was completely forgotten.
In 1967, his career was really launched, thanks to a censorship: while France left NATO's military command and the Vietnam War caused an anti-American sentiment in France, Michel Sardou launched Les Ricains (The Yankees), this song insists on the duty of gratitude towards the USA. Charles de Gaulle didn't like this song and he advised against broadcasting it on the air.
This conferred a new notoriety to the singer. The song allowed espacially to lay the foundations for his futur artistic style. However from 1967 to 1970, he had difficulties being a big hit.
In view of the mitigated success of his singles, in 1969, Eddie Barclay decided to terminate his contract, estimating that Michel was not cut out to be a singer.
So he launched the record label Tréma which would produce his records, with Jacques Revaux, who will become his most loyal composer and Regis Talar, a French record producer.
Michel Sardou seemed to leave the scene in order to devote to acting and to his Théâtre de la Porte Saint-Martin.
But Michel Sardou has proved that he has not gave up his singer career, as in 2004 he signed a contract with Universal Music for a new album entitled "Du plaisir", he took part also to the French television show Star Academy and finally he organized a big tour in 2004 and 2005, in which he sang in France, in Belgium, in Switzerland and in Canada.
His new double album, entitled "Hors Format" was released on November 13, 2006. This album includes 23 new songs, one of whom is a duet with Chimène Badi, "Le chant des hommes". Hors Format has reached 400 000 copies sold and it's a double platinum.
In 2007, he started his last tour, he sung in among others the Olympia and the Zénith de Paris.
Michel Sardou got married three times :
* with Françoise Pettré, a dancer. They got married in 1965, they divorced in 1977. They had two daughters : Sandrine (born in 1970) and Cynthia (born in 1973).
* with Elizabeth Haas, called Babette. They got married in 1977, they divorced in 1998. They had two sons : Romain Romain Sardou , writer (born in 1974) and Davy Davy Sardou , actor (born in 1978).
* with Anne-Marie Périer, the daughter of the actor François Périer, the sister of the photographer Jean-Marie Périer and the former editor-in-chief of Elle Elle (magazine) . They got married in 1999, at Neuilly-sur-Seine.
La Maladie d'amour (love disease) is certainly the most famous song of Michel Sardou, it remained at the top for 11 weeks. Michel drew his inspiration for this song from the Pachelbel's Canon.
Les Lacs du Connemara (Connemara Lakes) is also one of the most po***r song of Michel Sardou. It is very often sung at the end of French student parties and at weddings in Flanders.
In 2001, he bought the Théâtre de la Porte Saint-Martin, with his producer Jean-Claude Camus. In 2005, he resold his shares to his associate.
* 1996 : Bagatelle(s) by Noël Coward, directed by Pierre Mondy, in the Théâtre de Paris, with Natacha Amal, Philippe Khorsand, Frédéric Diefenthal…
* 1999 : Comédie privée by Neil Simon, directed by Adrian Brine, in the Théâtre du Gymnase Marie Bell, with Marie-Anne Chazel.
* 2001-2002 : L'homme en question by Félicien Marceau, directed by Jean-Luc Tardieu, on tour and in the Théâtre de la Porte Saint-Martin, with Brigitte Fossey, Davy Sardou...
* 2008-2009 : Secret de famille by Eric Assous, directed by Jean-Luc Moreau, in the Théâtre des Variétés, with Davy Sardou, Laurent Spielvogel, Mathilde Penin, Elisa Servier and Rita Brantalou.
* 1982 : L'Été de nos 15 ans by Marcel Jullian : Bernard. with Cyrielle Claire, Elisa Servier...
* 1986 : Cross Cross (fim) by Philippe Setbon : Thomas Crosky, called Cross. With Roland Giraud, Patrick Bauchau, Marie-Anne Chazel...
* 1990 : Promotion canapé Promotion canapé (film) by Didier Kaminka : Bernard. With Grace de Capitani, Thierry Lhermitte, Claude Rich, Patrick Chesnais, Jean-Pierre Castaldi, Zabou, Martin Lamotte, Pierre Richard, Eddy Mitchell...
* 1993 : L'Irlandaise by José Giovanni : Régis Cassani. With Jean-Michel Dupuis, Thérèse Liotard...
* 2003 : Le Prix de l'honneur by Gérard Marx : le colonel Christian Legoff. With Alexandra Vandernoot...
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