Every summer, France comes alive with the sound of music. June 21 is World Music Day (aka Fête de la Musique), and booking cottages to let in South West France means you are in the ideal location to join in the fun! The date is the perfect cue for all kinds of tuneful celebrations in the surrounding area.
Launched in 1982, the annual event has steadily grown in popularity. A dazzling range of live music is served up in the streets of local towns, so, whether your preference is for rock, hip-hop, soul or classical music performed by a full orchestra, there will be something to suit your taste.
One of the most exciting things about staying in cottages to let in rural South West France is that you get a chance to fully immerse yourself in the lifestyle. Taking part in an event like World Music Day helps to make your stay extra special and means you can mingle with people from the area, share the festive atmosphere with them and feel like a local.
Parks, gardens, bars and theatres are all transformed into venues for exciting evening entertainment, carrying on into the early hours. Both amateur and professional musicians get involved in the occasion, which is one of the most colourful highlights of the French summer. If you fancy dancing the night away, you have come to the right place!
Here is a look at entertainment on offer in the Lot Valley, where Kingfisher Holidays offer a varied selection of holiday gites to rent.
Villeneuve sur Lot
As a beautiful and historic town with many buildings dating right back to the 13th and 14th centuries, Villeneuve sur Lot is an ideal Music Day location. Every year, it stages a major festival to get summer under way, with a wide range of performers on the banks of the River Lot.
In 2017, there will be a strong Brazilian flavour to music on the Right Bank, with the chorus Som Vadio and musicians Forró Mandacaru performing, as well as wandering Brazilian percussionists. Swing and jazz, harmony, gospel and pop and rock will all be part of the mix too. A street orchestra, Les Décalés, is set to perform at the Place de la Libération. Or you could get your feet tapping and join in some impromptu dance lessons!
Over on the Left Bank, blues and rock are on the menu from King Kong Blues and Mylkia’s Soul Brother at Place Terminus, while the Happy Gospel Singers take centre stage at Saint-Etienne Church. There will also be a selection of bands, singers and DJs performing at the town’s bars and restaurants.
Lying on the River Garonne, Agen is another superb festival location, with its cathedral and the medieval buildings in the city centre. The cathedral will be one of the venues for Music Day, with the Choir of Agen and Schola Sainte Cecile performing sacred music early in the evening.
There are 3 main stages where music will be performed, with rock, world music, electro sounds, rap, hip-hop and reggae among the music on offer. There will even be a dance tribute to Michael Jackson and operetta.
As well as these main stages, even more music and dance will be performed in a range of “free music spaces” around the town. This includes traditional songs of the Garonne area as well as country and oriental, Celtic and Romany dances. As in Villeneuve, musicians will also perform in cafes and nightspots.
As well as the musical events in Villeneuve and Agen, there are also other musical treats in the surrounding area. What’s more, Music Day is far from being the only musical event of the summer. Other festivals include Garorock in Marmande at the end of June, with electro and rock music, and The Big Prune Show in Agen in August, which includes concerts and street theatre.
If you are looking for farmhouses, gites or cottages in South France, Kingfisher Holidays has a good range of quality properties to choose from. Our homes in the Lot Valley are set amid beautiful rolling landscapes, ranging from smaller gites sleeping 2-4 people right up to larger properties sleeping 10+. Features include lovely gardens and pools. Follow the link above to find out more.