La Fête de la Musique returns to Melbourne


French version   This article has been published exclusively by the   Courrier Australien  and the Alliance Française de Melbourne. 


One of the most iconic events on the French cultural calendar returns to Melbourne in a more intimate setting than ever before. Michel Richard, director of the Alliance Française lets us in on what to expect from the comeback event and reveals what adjustments have been made to adapt the event to the Melbourne winter.  

Flashback. Now more than 25 years ago, the then French Minister of Culture, Jack Lang, marked this unifying date for the first time. “It was about making music accessible to all, mixing professionals and amateurs in places as varied as the streets, parks and metro stations”, explains Michel Richard who emphasises the “free” nature of these neighbourhood performances. You could walk around and listen to all different genres of music, and all “on a beautiful sunny day in June”… says Michel Richard, who does however, recollect some years finishing in torrential rain. The event was met with much success, so much so that its popularity made things a little complicated. Local governments got involved, and security issues were raised. “Nonetheless, La Fête de la Musique has [since] expanded, with hundreds of events now happening all over the world. An initiative even recently started in Australia called ‘Make Music Day’ – which is a play on words that [French speakers] will easily understand.” 

Chicken Wishbone

Joyce Prescher

La Fête returns to Melbourne

The network of Alliance Françaises have for a long time been keen on echoing this important date, and its Melbourne branch makes no exception. “Having arrived quite recently, I cannot tell you a lot about our past events” explains Michel Richard, “but I know that we’ve tried different approaches, both within our walls and also in concert spaces in St Kilda where we have less control over the number of visitors.” After taking a year off, la Fête is making a comeback. “At our Eildon Mansion, we are lucky to have so much space: in the gallery spaces, on our terrace, in the basement. We even have a loggia!” So this is where the event will be taking place on the 21st of June, between 5pm and 10pm. 



French vibes, jam session and mulled wine

Ten groups will be performing in total, offering an eclectic variety of musical genres. Gypsy jazz, French chanson, West African songs, hip-hop… “The idea is for it to be impossible for you to get bored for the whole 5 hours that the event will be running” explains Michel Richard. “If you are a musician, you can even participate in our jam session that will bring the evening to a close”. An invitation to all amateur musicians! 

What’s more, there’s no chance you’ll go hungry. On the premises, two associations will be helping out: French Assist will be serving French onion soup (from a recipe prepared by French chef Philippe Mouchel) and Melbourne Accueil will be serving mulled wine. “I’ll add as well that the Crêpes for Change and Frencheese vans will both be on site, and that we will also have a bar available.” A cosy environment for an event taking place on the winter solstice. “We often think about changing the date, but December is busy with Christmas, and in January we already put on a concert in partnership with So Frenchy So Chic” explains Michel Richard. “Winter is far from being unbearable in Melbourne, and in any case don’t we say that music warms the heart?”  Article by Valentine Sabouraud

Translated by Ilaria O’Brien










Le line-up :


The New Impromptu Quartet

Joloff Vibes

Huw Gregory & Marlene Samson Duo

&  jam session




More information about La Fête de la Musique can be found here and on the official Facebook page here

Entry to the event is free, but please confirm your attendance by registering on our website here.


You may also like...

By Way of Navigation

By Way of Navigation

23 May to 30 June 2018
An exhibition by Emma Hamilton
Eildon Gallery, Alliance Française de Melbourne

Winter Holiday Intensive

Winter Holiday Intensive

From 2 July to 9 July 2018
1-Week French courses for adults, high school students and children, in CBD and St Kilda
& 1-day Immersion experience for adults and teenagers (NEW!) in St Kilda.

The Melbourne Salon

The Melbourne Salon

Thu 2 August
A discussion with Dr Alexis Bergantz about French conflicts and the case for freedom in Australia.

Vin & Fromage

Vin & Fromage

Each term on Tuesday, from 6.30pm to 8.00pm
(except School & Public Holidays)


Thanks for sharing! / Merci pour le partage!

Instagram

St Kilda branch:
51 Grey Street, ST KILDA
VICTORIA 3182 AUSTRALIA
Tel : 03 9525 3463
Fax : 03 9525 5064
E-mail: info@afmelbourne.com.au

Postal Address:
PO Box 2042,
ST KILDA WEST, VICTORIA 3182
AUSTRALIA

St Kilda branch opening hours:
Mon - Fri: 9am to 7pm (switchboard/reception: 9.30am to 6.30pm)
Sat: 9am to 6pm (switchboard/reception: 9am to 5.30pm).

How to find us:
Trams: 16, 96, Fitzroy Street
3, 5, 64, 67 St Kilda Junction (3, 64, 67 Alma Road)
Car park available
Wheelchair access

City branch:

PLEASE NOTE THAT OUR SWANSTON STREET BRANCH IS CLOSED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE.

Level 13, 55 Swanston St, MELBOURNE
VICTORIA 3000 AUSTRALIA
Tel : 03 9525 3463
Fax : 03 9525 5064
E-mail: info@afmelbourne.com.au

City branch opening hours:
Mon - Thurs 9am to 1pm & 2pm to 6.30pm
Fri - Sat: 9am to 12pm & 1pm to 6pm

How to find us:
Trams: 1, 3, 3a, 5, 6, 8, 11, 16, 42, 48, 64, 67, 72, 109
& 112 running down Swanston St (stop: Collins St/Swanston St)
Trains: Flinders St Station is 1 block away