French cellist Gautier Capuçon shares emotional performance outside of Notre-Dame

By Keegan Morris |

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Gautier Capuçon (Photo: Gregory Batardon)

Gautier Capuçon (Photo: Gregory Batardon)

The world was shocked when a fire devastated Notre-Dame de Paris on Monday, April 15, 2019. As people around the world paid tribute to the landmark Gothic cathedral, it was clear that people of all backgrounds, religions, and cultures were in mourning.

Speaking on the fire and the significance of the cathedral, concert organist Nathan Laube said: “The reason the fire hits so hard for the arts community at large, and the organ community in particular, is that there are few spaces in the Western world that are as sacred, musically speaking.”

In a moving sidewalk tribute across the street from the cathedral, cellist Gautier Capuçon performed Gabriel Fauré’s Après un rêve as the fire was being subdued. In the video captured by Europe 1, the fire department can be seen across the street as they work to contain and extinguish the fire.

After his performance, Capuçon gave a brief interview, saying that though the piece was called Après un rêve, meaning “after a dream,” the fire was more like a “nightmare.” He added that once he heard that there was a fire, he could not help coming to the cathedral, a monument that he feels belongs to all.

After French president Emmanuel Macron vowed to have the cathedral rebuilt within five years, violinist Renaud Capuçon, Gautier's older brother, announced on Facebook that he would give a series of concerts to benefit the restoration of Notre-Dame de Paris.