Chris Slade describes the son et lumiere presentation at the abbey of Bon Repos called "Le Pays de Conomor" in Brittany, which takes place during the first two weeks of August.
My partner and I love going to live music events and, although we’ve only lived here in France for eight months, we’ve already seen some local bands. My partner, who is a musician himself, has also played here in France – it’s great fun, you meet loads of new people and they’re great social events. We’ve just found out about the annual event, La Fete de la Musique. It takes place throughout the whole of France, on 21 June, the day of the summer solstice. It’s a street musical event, where thousands of musicians gather in bars, cafes and on the streets to perform all kinds of music. This free event covers all kinds of music; jazz, rock, folk – in fact every kind of music. We’ve spoken to several people who have been before and they all say the same….great events, a real sense of community and just generally a good time had by all.
La Fete de la Musique started when Maurice Fleuret became Director of Music. In 1982 he looked at a study on the cultural habits of the French and found that five million people, and one child out of two, played a musical instrument. This led him to dream of how he could find a way to bring people out onto the streets to make music. And on 21 June, 1982, the first Fete de la Musique was launched.
It was a huge success with professionals and amateurs joining to make music. And it’s been a tradition ever since. So, if you want something to do on 21 June, look out for the local adverts and join in with the events happening near you. Take a picnic, relax, sit in a pavement café and join in with the fun….we’re going to.
What’s going on near you on 21st June? Are you watching and listening or are you performing? Let us know by leaving a comment below.