The singer who has the most number one songs in French history is from Quebec. Celine Dion ? No, Mylène Farmer, who lived in Pierrefonds, in the west of the island, until she was around 9 years old. Since then, the one who launches a new album on Friday never returned to Quebec soil for a concert, although many admirers claimed her. It is as if she consciously avoided the country of her childhood. Another part of the mystery that surrounds the interpreter of Disenchantedwhich has fascinated the Francophonie for nearly 40 years.
This mystery, Mylène Farmer cultivates it. She never opened up about her private life in the tabloid press. Even less on social networks, where she is still absent subscribers in 2022. Her rare media appearances during promotional campaigns are deliberately limited to the main television news in France, sometimes a few magazines. She avoids the talk-shows French and major variety shows.
“To protect your privacy, there is a value in that. What makes people want to know so much about Mylène Farmer? It is precisely because we know that it is inaccessible. Given his immense success, if I had any advice to give, it would be that the risk of exposing his entire private life is much greater than the risk of revealing nothing, ”slips Louis Aucoin, communication strategist and incidentally admirer. of the first hour of the Franco-Quebec singer.
President of the public relations firm Tesla RP, Louis Aucoin perceives in the extreme discretion of Mylène Farmer a counter-example in this era where artists are encouraged to reveal the smallest insignificant details of their daily lives on social networks. Often described as the “French Madonna” for her provocative clips and her large-scale shows, Mylène Farmer is ultimately the antithesis of the Madonna on this point. While Material girl64, literally always gets naked on TikTok, Mylène Farmer is wallowing in an almost monastic silence.
Disenchanted with Quebec
We therefore know very little of his life, even less of his youth. We know that Mylène Farmer was born Gautier in September 1961 in Montreal. We know that his father, Max Gautier, was an engineer who immigrated to Quebec to work on the construction of the Manic-5 dam. The Gautier family returned to France at the end of the project.
Just before, the young Mylène attended the Sainte-Marcelline College, a renowned Catholic establishment where the children of Pierre Péladeau were also educated at the same time. Yolande Marceau, a laywoman, remembers very well having taught this “wise and discreet” young girl. Each time a French journalist manages to find her, she serves up the same anecdote: this time when little Mylène was sprayed without her knowledge by a skunk. “She hadn’t noticed. The other kids thought it smelled funny, and so did I. It was when she passed by me to bring her homework that I knew it was coming from her. I called the mom to come get her, but I don’t think the other children saw anything, ”recalls the 78-year-old retiree.
In the few interviews she grants, Mylène Farmer remains much more evasive about her childhood in Quebec. She says she has very few memories of it, other than the snow. At the start of her career, she candidly admitted that she did not like the Quebec accent. In the French press, it is even said that Mylène Farmer spoke like a Quebecer when she moved to the Paris region. Her parents would have paid for her sessions with a speech therapist so that she breaks her accent.
“When I met her, I didn’t feel that she had a great attachment to Quebec. It’s not like Madonna, who is very aware of her Quebec origins and talks about it openly. Is it because Mylène protects herself because she doesn’t want to talk about certain things from her childhood? That’s part of the Mylène Farmer mystery,” notes ex-VJ (video jockey) Geneviève Borne, who interviewed Mylène Farmer in 1996 in Paris. She remembers it as a distant but kind woman, unlike many French stars who take pleasure in taunting journalists.
Host Paul Houde has long dreamed of interviewing him too. On a few occasions, his teams approached the entourage of the star, in vain. Paul Houde has boundless admiration for the performer of the sulfurous Libertine, even if he is sorry that she has ignored Quebec since the beginning of her career. A contempt that many Quebecers return to him, however, notes Paul Houde.
“There are people in Quebec who consider that she has no voice, because we are obsessed, in Quebec, with booming voices, surely because of Céline. It is categorized as cheesy. We laugh at his choreographies. They say she exaggerates when she cries on stage. Maybe. But me, I like it! Her shows are grandiose and there is this double game. On the one hand, she captivates the stadium, which knows her songs by heart. On the other hand, it is extremely fragile”, underlines the erudite presenter with the enthusiasm that we know when a subject fascinates him.
To protect your privacy, there is a value in that. What makes people want to know so much about Mylène Farmer? It is precisely because we know that it is inaccessible.
Mylène Farmer, 61, will be on tour all summer through France, Switzerland and Belgium. Before the war in ukraine, she had also planned to go to Russia, where she has a pool of admirers. But Quebec was never part of his plans.
A few years ago, the Festival d’été de Québec (FEQ) had seriously taken steps to bring it to the Plains, but quickly, we noticed that the interest was not mutual. The FEQ lets it be known all the same that the Mylène Farmer file “is after all still active”.
Rumor has long run that the famous redhead avoided Quebec for fear of flying. Gold, The Parisian reported in its pages this week that the singer would have returned to Quebec incognito in November 2017. She would even have gone to visit the bungalow of her childhood in Pierrefonds, where a couple of Moldovan origin lives today who had vaguely heard of her .
All is not chaos, therefore, for her Quebec admirers, who still hope to see her on stage here one day.