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Le Festival Soirs d’Été in Paris

23 May 2016

Enjoy Music, Films and Workshops at a Variety of Outdoor Concerts & Events this July

A visit to Paris in summer isn’t complete without catching a music festival. The Parisians love live music and, in a city like Paris, there is no end of characterful venues and exciting new bands and performers to feast your eyes (and ears) on during your stay. Now in its 18th year, ‘Le festival Soirs d’Été’ or Summer Evenings Festival – changed to Oui FM Festival in 2015 – is a series of outdoor concerts held in central Paris. Sponsored by hit Paris radio station, Oui FM, several venues around the city, including Place de la République in the 3rd arrondissement and Bois de Vincennes in the 12th arrondissement, will be transformed into huge, open-air auditoriums in summer… open for all to visit.

A Festival with Heart and Soul

The ongoing popularity of this festival is testament to its diversity. Year after year, new acts are added to the line-up and even veteran audiences cannot predict what the next year may hold. About far more than just music, the Oui FM Festival hosts eclectic dance, film and workshop events too. This event isn’t just about performers entertaining and audiences merely watching – this is an interactive, cultural festival; one that encourages the coming together of professionals and amateurs, performers and spectators alike. The variety of activities and vast array of fascinating people you’ll come across at this festival are the reason crowds return time and time and again.

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Place de la République - one of the festival venues

The festival organisers – the 3rd festival committee and Mayor – make it their aim to be inclusive and innovative in their approach to this series of festivals – their philosophy is that Paris should celebrate its outdoor areas, especially in the summertime, and they shouldn’t only be accessible to the wealthy elite who can afford open-air classical concerts, fine dining and exclusive use of the most beautiful spots in the city. They wanted to encourage absolutely everyone, from any walk of life, to enjoy the arts in a lively city space, whilst learning, meeting new people and getting creative. Hence, since 1998, many parts of this festival have remained completely free of charge to punters, with other events charging an affordable fee, which in some cases is donated to charity.

From Young Talents to Renowned Artists

The series of concerts runs from May to June 2016 and are themed. In 2016, concerts will include Solidays, We Love Green, Paris Hip Hop, Download and Festival Ferte Jazz.  Artists and musicians from across the world will take part in the line-up and many will be well-known to spectators.

Download – like its British counterpart – focuses on music from the rock genre. This year bands such as Iron Maiden, The Deftones, Biffy Clyro, Korn and Rammstein will headline this branch of the festival between 10th – 12th June. For fans of rock, this is an event not to be missed! Another genre sure to get the crowds moving is the Hip Hop festival between 20th May and 5th June. As well as international, big name hip hop artists like B-Real, DJ Vadim and Assassin taking to the stage, this event will include dance competitions and themed parties.

If mainstream pop music is more for you, attending Solidays between 24th and 26th June will be right up your street. With a Woodstock-style Love theme, this is the part of the Yes FM programme to visit if you’re up for fun in the sun in a more typical-festival-goer manner i.e. bring your own flower garland. The music is mainly French, though some names – like Bloc Party and Flatbush Zombies – may ring bells for some visitors. Influences such as jazz, reggae, electro, rap and rock will be found at this concert – it’s the most eclectic of the events and, even if you are unfamiliar with much of the music on arrival, you’re sure to leave with a load of new bands to go home and listen to.

We Love Green: The Ultimate Eco Event

Slightly away from the centre of Paris, the We Love Green festival is appropriately held in the Bois de Vincennes forest in the 12th arrondissement. Not only does the location go green but so does the music, as performers focus on ecological issues and their commitments to a greener world. Eco-friendly partying has never been so enjoyable – this event is an exciting mix of rock, pop and electronic music, reflecting the inclusivity of nature. Fresh, new artists are abound and it’s a great way to enjoy Paris in the sunshine. This year, guests can enjoy music by artists such as PJ Harvey, James Blake and Diplo.

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Bois de Vincennes - location of the We Love Green Festival

Not only does the music reflect the core values of the festival, but local producers and caterers come to the 4th-5th June weekend event to sell their organic, home-grown produce…with some giving talks and further information about how to care for the environment as a consumer. Artists, movies and interactive think tank installations will also help visitors explore the world of conservation and sustainability.

With over 100,000 festival-goers expected at this year’s events, you’re sure to find electric atmospheres, eclectic music and new-thinking at the 2016 Oui FM Festival. All of the events are ticketed – billets and further information can be found here.


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