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The Fête de la Musique (World Music Day)

The Fête de la Musique is a music celebration taking place every year on the 21st of June in many countries . June 21 is the summer solstice day, the longest day and shortest night of the year, marking the beginning of a new summer season.

It was in 1982 that the Fête de la Musique first took place, thanks to the French Minister of Culture of the time, Jack Lang and his Director of Music and Dance, Maurice Fleuret.  The idea to organize festivities around music in summer was originally from an American musician, Joel Cohen who used to work for French radio stations in the 70s. Cohen wanted to organize special shows ( for the summer and winter solstices ) to promote musicians. The idea was later adopted by the new French government and Jack Lang.

The success the World Music Day met in its first years quickly lead many cities around the world to celebrate music as well. In three decades, some 120 countries take part in spreading music in their streets and cultural places. Countries as diverse as China, Australia, Germany, Sweden, Mexico, Korea, Colombia or France and many more  all share the” Fête de la Musique” in June to mark the beginning of summer.

Throughout France there are concerts everywhere, not only in the concert halls, but on all the streets, the cafes and bars, parks and fields. People organize public concerts or play privately at home.  From Opera to Hard rock, to Folk to Waltzing, all music is good music and there are no frontiers. It is one of the few days in France where you are allowed to make noise throughout the night.

Will you be going to a Music festival on midsummer’s night?
What is your favourite type of music?

By Alister

Studying at the University of Besaçon, Burgundy Franche-Comté, France

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