Gilles Vigneault, singer-songwriter, poet, publisher (b at Natashquan, Qué 27 Oct 1928). Like Félix LECLERC, Gilles Vigneault was instrumental in the revitalization of the Québec chanson and the international dissemination of Québecois culture. After studying at Laval University (L LITT 1953) he founded Éditions de l'arc , a publishing house that, since its inception in 1959, has published more than 35 collections of his poems, stories and songs. In 1960, he performed for the first time at the boîte à chansons L'Arlequin in Québec City. Ever since, Vigneault has been a figurehead and ardent defender of the French language in Québec.
Vigneault always touches his audiences with the sheer force of poetry, sincerity and youth emanating from his work. His rousing song MON PAYS (1964) sealed his popularity at home and abroad, and for many Québécois it has become an anthem.
Vigneault has appeared in all major Canadian concert halls, including PLACE DES ARTS, the NATIONAL ARTS CENTRE in Ottawa, and at Toronto's MASSEY HALL. He has toured extensively in Europe, performing in France, Switzerland, Poland, Belgium and Luxembourg. In the early 1970s Vigneault founded his own record label, Le Nordet (Éditions du vent qui vire) and has produced over 20 recordings since it's inception. His most recent releases include Voyagements: En direct du théâtre Petit Champlain (2001), Au Bout du coeur (2003), and Si on voulait danser sur ma musique (2005).
Among the many awards and distinctions he has received are the 1996 PRIX DE MUSIQUE CALIXA-LAVALLÉE, the MOLSON PRIZE (1982), the Prix Denise-Pelletier (1983) and the Grand Prix du disque of the Académie Charles-Cros in Paris (1984). Gilles Vigneault was made a Chevalier of the Ordre national du Québec (1985) and of France's Légion d'honneur (1986) as well as an Officier des arts et des lettres de France (1990). Vigneault was awarded the Governor General's Performing Arts Award in 1993.