The Fête de la Musique was created in 1982 at the initiative of Jack Lang, then French Minister of Culture. The idea of organising a free music festival was made a reality by Maurice Fleuret, Director of Music and Dance who observed that one child out of two in France played a musical instrument.
Originally, the Fête de la Musique (or World Music Day) is a popular and free music festival taking place each year in France on the day of the summer solstice, the shortest night of the year in the northern hemisphere. Throughout the country and abroad, jazz, soul, funk, rock, electro, reggae, classical music and many other musical styles are enthusiastically celebrated.
Nowadays, the Fête de la Musique has become one of the country’s greatest cultural events and an international phenomenon. It is celebrated on the 21st of June in no less than 700 cities in the world in 120 countries including South Africa. The Fête de la Musique allows million to discover new musical trends from traditional music to rap, hip-hop, techno, world music, musical carnival and so much more. The Fête de la Musique is celebrated in a cheerful and festive atmosphere by both amateur and professional musicians who perform in the streets, squares, gardens or courtyards for free.
The event gives the opportunity for the major musical institutions to reach out to new audiences. The Fête de la Musique makes the art and culture more accessible for all.