Summer is drawing to a close but the weather is looking mild and sunny for a few more weeks. An ideal time to enjoy the city indoors and outdoors, and discover the new events programmes. From September onwards, museums, theatres and leisure venues resume full service and there is a wealth of festivals, trade fairs, plays, and exhibitions throughout the capital.
Annual cultural events in Paris at the start of the autumn season
Topping the list of cultural events, September’s European Heritage Days are eagerly awaited in Paris. This year the dates are 18 and 19 September 2021 and the theme is Heritage for all. Over one weekend, numerous cultural and historical sites exceptionally open their doors to visitors! This annual event is a rare opportunity to discover some of Paris’s most beautiful buildings. In October, the Nuit Blanche, on the first Saturday of October - the night of 2 to 3 October 2021 - attracts night owls for a cultural all-nighter as ephemeral art installations across the city offer a different, offbeat and intriguing view of the city. 2021 will be the twentieth edition of this event, and it’s sure to be even more original and imaginative than ever!
More info on the European Heritage Days
More info on the Nuit Blanche
Must-see exhibitions in Paris
As summer draws to a close, new exhibitions are opening in France’s capital city. From 18 September to 3 October 2021, with The Arc de Triomphe, Wrapped, Christo turns the monument into a huge gift package, creating an extraordinary temporary artwork. The Fondation Louis Vuitton opens the season with an exhibition of masterpieces from the art collection of the Muscovite brothers Mikhaïl Abramovitch Morozov (1870-1903) and Ivan Abramovitch Morozov (1871-1921). The exhibition The Morozov Collection. Icons of Modern Art will be on view from 22 September 2021 to 22 February 2022. The Musée Jacquemart-André presents, from 10 September 2021 to 24 January 2022, an exhibition devoted to one of the greatest painters of the Italian Renaissance, Sandro Botticelli (1445-1510).
Book your tickets for the event the Arc de Triomphe wrapped by Christo
Concerts and shows in Paris
Plays, musicals, operas, ballets and concerts – the cultural calendar opens in full swing in Paris’s best-known theatres and concert halls!
For some comic relief, head to the Théâtre de Paris where Bérengère Krief is presenting her new one-woman show Amour (from 8 September to 24 October 2021). Humour also takes pride of place at the Théâtre Bo Saint-Martin with Julie Collas’s irresistible 100% British stand-up performance Oh my God, she’s Parisian! (from 11 September to 18 December 2021). And Olivier Giraud’s one-man show How to become a Parisien in one hour, at the Théâtre des Nouveautés, is still playing to a full house after having been seen by 800,000 spectators.
Book your ticket for Oh my God, she's Parisian!
Book your ticket for How to become a Parisian in one hour!
Africa takes pride of place at the Théâtre Mogador with the return of one of the best-loved musicals: The Lion King (from 6 November 2021). At the Paris Longchamp hippodrome Noé, la force de vivre takes the audience on an exploration of the story of Noah’s Ark (from 5 November 2021). Eagerly awaited too is the musical version of The Producers, directed by Alexis Michalik, based on Mel Brooks’ cult film (at the Théâtre de Paris, from December 2021).
It’s a new season at the opera as well! The Opéra Bastille presents Romanian composer Georges Enesco’s only opera, Œdipe, against a backdrop of organic, vegetal, ethereal and aquatic images (from 20 Septembre to 14 October 2021). Also at the Bastille, Laurent Pelly directs the comic opera L’élixir d’amour, from 28 September to 9 November 2021. At the Palais Garnier, Marina Abramović’s7 Deaths of Maria Callas is at the crossroads of opera, performance art and video creation. Don’t miss it, from 1 to 4 September 2021.
The Paris Opera inaugurates its new dance season with the Opening Gala on 24 September 2021 at the Palais Garnier. This is followed, at the Garnier, by Alexander Ekman’s contemporary ballet Play, from 28 Septembre to 6 November 2021, which promises two hours of visual entertainment. And for its Christmas special, from 8 December 2021 to 7 January 2022, the Palais des Congrès de Paris offers its audience a magical evening with Tchaikovsky’s masterpiece The Nutcracker.
Calling all fans of France’s favourite singer Johnny Hallyday! The Accor Arena will rock to the tribute concert Johnny Hallyday: Que je t'aime on 14 September 2021. British singer Elton John is giving three exceptional concerts on 10, 12 and 13 October 2021 à l'Accor Arena, as part of his Farewell Yellow Brick Road tour. And French musician Woodkid will unveil extracts from his latest work S16 à la Seine Musicale, from 2 to 4 November 2021.
Festivals in Paris
Like summertime, autumn in Paris offers rich pickings when it comes to festivals. For nearly ten days, from 9 to 18 September 2021, Paris celebrates design and creativity avec la Paris Design Week! The Champs-Élysées Film Festival, from 14 to 21 September 2021, showcasing independent French and American film-makers, celebrates its tenth anniversary, to the delight of film buffs. The Autumn Festival is one of the most eclectic of the season. A wide variety of events will be hosted in 65 venues across the Paris region. The 50th edition takes place from 1 September 2021 to 18 February 2022.
Trade shows and exceptional cultural events in Paris
More than 1,600 events are organised each year in Paris, including more than 400 international trade shows open to the general public. From 9 to 12 Septembre 2021, nearly 150 international art galleries will be represented at the Temporary Grand Palais for the 23rd edition of the Art Paris Art Fair! The fashion capital, Paris parades the finest designer creations at Fashion Week (from 27 September to 5 October 2021 for women’s fashion). Last but not least, the Omnivore Food Festival, a gourmet event devoted to the best of French gastronomy returns to the parc Floral de Paris, from 11 September to 13 September 2021.