Vincent Bélanger

I first met Vincent Bélanger at an audio technology conference – certainly an unusual place to meet a classical cellist. And yet there he was, speaking to audiophiles of all ages before he took up his cello and made us all sit up and pay attention with his gifted playing.

Vincent was participating at an audio show because he is an artist and now Artistic Director of Audio Note – a record label created specifically to promote him – Vincent Bélanger. Yes – he’s that good. Moreover, he’s a charismatic personality and an excellent communicator.

Audio Note is a high end ($tens of thousands) hi-fi system that is designed to enhance the enjoyment of recorded classical music. Peter Overtrup, the company’s CEO signed Vincent as the label’s first and only artist, recording a double vinyl album, uniquely designed to play at 45 rpm. The faster turntable rate enhances the recording’s fidelity. That’s also partly why it’s a double album. Audio Note is making an immense investment in Vincent’s talent and musical vision. For example – it took him two years to select the material, record and produce Pure Cello. He’s the first Quebecer to anchor an international record label.

“The Cello is a perfect instrument,” Vincent told me with complete assurance, as if he was describing the properties of gravity. To emphasize his assertion, he adds: “I play a four hundred year old instrument, and it still has the same musical properties that it had three and a half centuries before I was born.” Continuing; “With Pure Cello, I wanted to make classical music accessible. This instrument can play from the cello bass notes to very high notes. I want to play music that’s unexpected – that’s what draws listeners in.”

While he was already an accomplished musician technically, Vincent said; “It was during my years in France that I learned the colour of the cello – taking me deeper into the instrument’s capabilities.”

So how is an Audio Note recording different? The generally accepted goal of classical recordings is to have the listener feel that they are in the concert hall and listening to the performance. An Audio Note recording will have you sitting on the stage, and in the case of Pure Cello, right beside the virtuoso musician himself. This creates a new and unique listening experience, a significant departure from traditional classical recordings.

During his presentation and demonstration at the audio show, Vincent spoke passionately about his music, his instrument, the recording and he even demonstrated the fidelity of Audio Note hi-fi system by playing a complementary musical part live, alongside his recording, Pure Cello. Vincent Bélanger and Audio Note appear to be poised to make the next major advance in recording technology, offering classical music aficionados a new audio perspective.

Vincent is capturing the attention of the classical music community. Composer Francois Dompierre is writing a new composition specifically for Montreal’s gifted cellist.

Pure Cello is available in vinyl and CD formats at online record stores and in physical stores such as Archambault. For more information about Audio Note and Vincent Bélanger, please visit: