Your regularly scheduled programming has been interrupted for La Fête de la Musique…. tune in tomorrow for a delayed viewing of Friday@Flore.
Fête de la Musique begins early, very early, for some. Around noon in the Luxembourg Gardens scheduled concerts had already began. But, I’m a working girl, so I only made it out the door around dinner time.
Heading home from a meeting, I saw café after café counting on police indulgence for the evening, having installed additional tables that sprawled well,beyond their legal limits. The places were already over flowing with Parisians absolutely thrilled to be enjoying a rare moment of blue skies. Especially after a tremendous thunder storm that had shaken windows throughout the city earlier in the day.
The entire city was ready to party. The first band I ran into was fantastic, playing original tunes that made you want to dance. 100 metres further along was a very young boy playing violin. I crossed the street to take a photo, expecting to hear a squeeky repetition of scales. Instead, I heard an impressively polished performance of some basic Mozart tunes. Wow.
Then it was off to the Grand Palais, where they were throwing a Bal Blanc to celebrate the end of Daniel Buren’s installation of Monumenta. Lots of youth trying to wear mostly white. It was infinitely less elegant than the Dîner Blanc, but just as fun, and a great way to really appreciate Buren’s piece, which was all about color and light. I was loving the scene and the intense beat of the techno music made my insides smile. I wanted to dance. Instead I lay down on the floor to photograph this original couple with the Buren couple in the background.
It was a great scene, only it felt almost criminal to be inside on this glorious evening so I headed back out to the Odeon area, where I know the performers and exactly where to head for British rock, 80’s cover songs or an old fashioned oompah band.
I have a particular soft spot for the man who stands on the rue de Seine, near the corner of the rue des Beaux Arts playing traditional French songs over a sound system as he distributes the lyrics and leads the crowd in a sing along. He once had an average day job, but thanks to his success at the Fête de la Musique, he now offers his services for corporate events, cruises and private parties, making a career of his passion. Proof positive that La Fête la Musique can change your life.