The singer of the hit "Capri, it's over" publishes his autobiography, "Ivy in the trees".

Hervé Vilard tells in "Culture Médias" an extract: his strange meeting with Pope John Paul II.


In his autobiography 

Of Ivy in the Trees

, singer Hervé Vilard retraces the great encounters of his life, such as his friendship with the novelist Marguerite Duras.

He also tells Philippe Vandel's microphone his astonishing conversation with John Paul II, who received him in denim overalls in his gardens, while he was busy pruning the plants in his garden.

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A real estate purchase that brings him to the Vatican

It all started when Hervé Vilard bought a rectory, in which he found religious documents.

"I found hundreds of Father Angrand's sermons, which were written in Indian ink. I read them, I found them to be very beautiful," he recalls.

"And so I wanted to have them delivered to the Vatican, through Monsignor Lustiger."

The singer then accompanies the cardinal and sermons to the Vatican, where he attends a papal mass.

"John Paul II greeted all the audience. Then he came back to me, after I read him a sermon from the Abbot," says Hervé Vilard.

"He asked me 'Can we see each other this afternoon?' So naturally I said yes." 


The unexpected portrait of ... Hervé Vilard

"Capri, it's over, it was a song of freedom" 

It is in the afternoon that John Paul II receives Hervé Vilard, in a Vatican garden.

The religious took off his mass dress for denim overalls.

"He told me 'You know,

Capri, it's over, it

was a song of freedom for me when I was in Krakow'", remembers Hervé Vilard, imitating the voice of the sovereign pontiff who grew up in communist Poland.

"At that moment, you feel above the ground. There are moments, privileges, like that of characters that you meet. Magnificent characters", explains Hervé Vilard.

"John Paul II told me that with a secateurs in his hand, he was pruning roses."