Djembe along the Seine….Paris!

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All kinds of music / A large audience

Completely different from a music festival, the Fête de la Musique is above all a free popular fête, open to any participant (amateur or professional muicians) who wants to perform in it. This Music day allows the expression of all styles of music in a cheerful atmosphere. It aims at a large audience, working to popularise musical practice for young and not so young people from all social backgrounds. It gives an opportunity to communicate and share a very special moment through music.

A free and popular event

The musicians are asked to perform for free, and all the concerts are free for the public. It’s the reason why they are used to play in open air areas as streets and parks or in public buildings like museums, train stations, castles… Furthermore, the Fête de la Musique is a way to encourage the major music institutions (orchestra, operas, choirs, etc.) to perform outside their usual locations. This kind of institutions can also welcome other types of music. In this way it offers an opportunity to develop exchanges between city centres and their outlying areas, to offer concerts in hospitals or in prisons, to promote encounters and exchanges between young musicians and well-known talents.
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Launched in 1982 by the French Ministry for culture, the Fête de la Musique is held in more than hundred countries in Europe and over the world. It takes place every 21st June, the day of the summer solstice in the northern hemisphere.
Thanks to the impulse and the dynamism of the French cultural network abroad (the departments of Cultural Affairs at the French Embassies, french cultural Centers and Institutes and the Alliances Françaises) the Fête has an important international growth. Indeed, a lot of events are now set up by local organisers (Ministries for Culture, City Councils, local artistic associations, etc.). For example, in Europe, a professional and institutional network, called “Fête européenne de la Musique”, was created. In other countries, the informations about the programmes and the reports on the 21st of June are less formal, there are many projects indeed.
We have to invent the Fête de la Musique again and again, taking care of each country cultural specificities. In this way, it will become a real emblematic event in most of the countries.
The highlight of my Paris trip was to play Djembe with the musicians along the Seine….photo above!
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