French chanteuse makes U.S. debut at UMass Dartmouth

Apr 26, 2022

La vie est belle!

Celebrated French chanteuse Mathilde Mauguière made her American debut on Thursday, April 21 at a free concert hosted by UMass Dartmouth’s Boivin Center for French Language and Culture.

The singer said that while she has sung in theaters around the world, she had never performed in the United States or at a university before Thursday.

She said she was able to arrange the show and make the trip because she recently started a relationship with an American man named Dean de la Motte who is on the board of directors at the Alliance Française of Newport, R.I.

“I am here because I met this man in France in September,” she said during the performance. “So it’s for love — that’s a pretty good reason, isn’t it?”

During her stay in the U.S., Mauguière said that she had the opportunity to travel to New York — where she has always dreamed of performing — and to Boston, where she got to see the Red Sox play at Fenway Park.

“To see the Red Sox is very special for une française,” she said. “So, I’m happy to see that.”

Dr. Mel Yoken, the Director of the Boivin Center, said the center was “honored to host such a celebrated chanteuse.”

“I could go on tout l’après-midi [all afternoon],” he said.

Yoken said that the center is proud to be able to host a wide variety of guests for concerts and lectures that are open to the public.

“We’ve had some extraordinary guests,” he said, citing authors, chefs, historians and more. “We’ve had them all except Édith Piaf.”

Yoken said that the center typically hosts about two such guests each semester, though they’ve had to slow down a little during the pandemic.

“The Boivin Center has brought so many worthwhile programs to the community,” said Maria Sanguenetti, assistant to Yoken. “My only regret is that more people don't realize the wonderful work that Mel Yoken has done in bringing such luminaries to the community at no cost to the participants.”