Paris Summer Festival (Festival d'été de Paris)
5 June 2017
Masters of Music, Art, Dance & Theatre Takeover Paris
Experience the Paris Summer Festival this July and August as the French capital becomes home to a series of music, art, dance and theatrical performances; where the already thriving cultural centre will provide endless opportunities to embrace the arts. Taking place across a range of venues, visitors are guaranteed diversity, art and entertainment aplenty.
Floor on Fire – Battle of Styles
17th July at Maison De La Radio
This year, the Paris Summer Festival will open to Floor on Fire – Battle of Styles; where a selection of world-famous dance companies take to the dancefloor, as they prepare to battle their way to victory in the knock-out style competition.
Ranging from the realms of ballet, breakdancing, classical and contemporary dance… with some high-flying circus artists thrown in for good measure; the troupes will be randomly paired up to compete against other ensembles. What’s more, all routines are completely improvised; with dancers unaware of what the DJ has in store – from a repertoire that fluctuates between anything and everything, spanning contemporary hip-hop beats to the majestic melodies of baroque.
After the dramatic dance off, the fate of the troupes is then decided by the jury of experts – although audience participation is very influential in decision-making! Among the dynamic dance companies competing this year are Preljocaj Ballet – founded by France’s most famous contemporary choreographer; Semperoper Dresden Ballet and breakdancing outfit, The Saxonz.
The Ephemeral City
17th July – 30th July at La Villette
Having recently graced the likes of Sydney, Helsinki and Mexico City with his resourceful ventures; artist Olivier Grossetête has decided upon Paris and its Summer Festival as the destination for his latest project – The Ephemeral City.
The Ephemeral City is exactly what its name suggests, a short-lived city; hand-built throughout the week with the help of festival goers. Upon completion, the cardboard constructs will tower over 80 feet in height, weighing around a ton! However, there is more fun to be had with the site-specific artworks. After the pieces of the project have been placed together; you can watch as the colossal constructs come crashing down in the dramatic demolition on Sunday evening.
To get involved in the venture, visit the Prefabrication Workshops at Grande Halle de la Villette to assist in the construction of the buildings; or head to Place de la Fontaine aux Lions where the structure will start to arise throughout the week. See the completed Ephemeral City over the weekend; before the sky-high city is torn down on Sunday!
25th July – 30th July at Various Venues
For your fix of gravity-defying, dart-throwing, side-splitting, adrenaline-fuelled acrobatics; visit the high-flying collective La Contrebande, as the six acrobatic artists perform their debut production (Bal Trap) in a number of venues across Paris.
Involving the use of a colossal Korean Plank – the routine sees the energetic ensemble launched high into the air; fearlessly flying, flipping and falling in all directions, in a performance that is equally as mesmeric as it is angst inducing. Soaring bodies will also be accompanied by balloons, darts and confetti; bringing touches of humour to the perilous performance – which is expertly executed in step to the sprightly sounds which dictate the rhythm of the routine.
La Contrebande will be courting danger in a number of venues throughout the Paris Summer Festival, including: Place René Clair (25th July), Plage de Villetaneuse (26th July), Bercy Village (28th July), Parc Georges-Valbon (29th July) and Parc Forestier de la Poudrerie (30th July).
30th July – 5th August at Various Venues
Across the course of the Paris Summer Festival, dulcet double act Duo Miral will deliver an eclectic mix of melodies to audiences; before closing the festival at the Le Monfort Theatre on Sunday.
The young musicians in their performance, draw inspiration from a fusion of cultural influences. The silky yet powerful vocals are provided courtesy of Syrian-Lebanese, Climène Zarkan – equally as adept in her delivery regardless of whether she’s singing in Arabic, French or Creole; often deviating between the three. Zarkan also chips in with a variety of percussion instruments, to supplement the sensuous jazz melodies laid down by Baptiste Ferrandis on guitar. Oriental, Séga and African influences complete the unique sound of Duo Miral, with the band one to watch for the remainder of 2017 (and beyond!).
With four dates at Festival d'été de Paris, there’s no excuses for missing Duo Miral (and plenty of opportunity to see them more than once) – where they will play Chamarande Park (30th July), Bagneux (1st August), Bercy Village (4th August) before closing the Festival at Le Monfort Theatre on 5th August.
The above mentioned are but a scratch on the surface of the diverse array of art, dance music and theatrical performances taking place during the Paris Summer Festival. See here for the full festival itinerary.
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