ZAZ Back in Ostrava
Isabelle Geffroy, better known by her stage name ZAZ, is a young French singer who works mainly
within the realms of jazz and chanson while fusing other genres into her repetoir. Listeners had
a chance to experience her captivating live show at this year’s Colours of Ostrava festival. Though
her songs are mainly about life, love, and “love without the addiction,” she also uses her voice to
address global issues, and takes an erudite interest in supporting the protection of nature and the
environment in relation to not only the planet, but also to oneself.
Isabelle, your gripping music has bewitched Ostrava
now for many years. Why did you decide to perform
at Colours of Ostrava again? What do you like about
I consider Colours of Ostrava to be something very
special. The location of the festival grounds is crazy!
The first time we played here, around 25,000 people
visited the festival, many of which showered us in
applause even fifteen minutes after we had finished
the set. The connection I was able to make with the
audience was unbelievable! Colors of Ostrava remains
one of the most beautiful festivals I have ever gone to,
even after I’ve participated in many others all over the
world. It is definitely on my top ten list, I would say it
would even make the top five. The second time we
played in Ostrava, the festival held around 35,000
visitors, and all of them exhibited incredible energy
at the concert. I am extremely glad that I was able to
take part again! Also, our Czech audience is always
so present, so absorbed in the music, full of love and
very interactive. Concert tickets always sell out faster
when we announce a show in the Czech Republic than
anywhere else. In short, we have a great relationship!
We know that you care a lot about the environment.
What do you think about the use of the post-industrial
zone Dolní Vítkovice as grounds for a festival, thereby
returning it to the people and bringing a flash of
modern culture to a place with so much history?
I think using a place with so much character and history
like this is amazing. I think that it’s a remarkable feat to
bring modern people and culture to a place like this.
The area has so much energy, all of which I could feel
the moment I first stepped into the festival grounds.
I am incredibly happy to be back!
Chilaud a redakce
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What themes do you build into your music--what
do you usually write about?
The main themes I most often cover are life and love.
Love, for me, is not about addiction. I think that we
should strive for something unconditional, even
though that can sometimes be complicated. Often, we
do not love unconditionally, unless we’re talking about
My lyrics also talk about death. It is good to let go of old
demons, so that we can move on, get a grip on our life,
and stop being its puppet. If there are things around us
we don’t like, it is up to us to change them, and stop
simply complaining, as that helps no one. All of us have
something inside us that makes us responsible, free,
I also often talk about love, children, about the fact
that we need to learn to live together, that we are all
different, which is beautiful. We are all unique, which
means we have something to gain from one another.
I also frequently talk about respect, about humanistic
values, and that it is good to do things the right
way. Mainly, it is important to learn to love yourself!
I think that this is the basis for everything. When I talk
about ecology, for example, I also mean “personal
ecology.” That means that we should all think about
our mindsets… If, as a person, you often complain, you
must come to realize, that at the same time, you are
polluting the personal ecological system around you,
meaning it negatively affects others too. Ecology is part
This is not your first visit to Ostrava. Is there anything
you would recommend to tourists visiting the area?
Wow! You know, every time I come here for a festival
or concert, I barely have time to visit the area, with
the exception of Prague, which seems like a crazily
hectic city to me. I remember that we went to visit
the market and the Museum of Torture with my
friends once. Later that night, we were wandering the
streets, drinking mulled wine. It’s a day I like to think
back on. My personal suggestion though, is to bring
friends along whenever you come here. I don’t know
the Czech Republic that well, but I would definitely
recommend meeting the local people, because they
are very welcoming and kind!
Thank you for the interview.
Emmanuel Chilaud and editorial
Partner of the interview:
VEOLIA ENERGIE ČR, a.s.