The winter show circuit
Cold weather can’t stop Grand Paris—we have a full selection of events to warm your winter nights! Every year in January, the Sons d’Hiver Festival returns with numerous concerts in Paris and in several towns to the south-east of Paris.
Don’t miss Sonic Protest, back with this year’s edition. This avant-garde festival founded in 2003 takes place throughout Grand Paris. Programming includes concerts, sound installations and film projections organized in an extremely eclectic selection of venues including Saint-Merry Church (4th arrondissement), Le Centquatre (19th arrondissement), Le Générateur in Gentilly, the Théâtre de Vanves, Les Instants Chavirés and La Marbrerie in Montreuil to name just a few.
In March, the Paris Music Festival is based on the audacious idea of listening to music in the most unusual places in Greater Paris! The concept behind this festival is simple but bold: enjoy music in the most unusual places Grand Paris has to offer! Electro in a museum, rock in a cultural center or jazz in a quirky bar, for example—an event that’s sure to please!
Spring is in the air—with a full calendar of events
Spring brings warmer weather, and a slew of festivals as well! Women are in the spotlight at Les Femmes s’en mêlent, an event devoted entirely to showcasing the women of the indie music scene. The festival, founded in 1997, sets concerts in Le Trabendo (19th arrondissement).
And in Mars, the western suburbs march in time to the music of Festival Chorus des Hauts-de-Seine at La Seine Musicale on Ile Seguin. The festival celebrates all styles, from rock to French chanson, rap and electro. Tickets are affordable and the lineup exceptional!
April rhymes with electro in Paris. AccorHotels Arena hosts the Fun Radio Ibiza Experience: a special evening organized by Radio Electro Dance Music de France with top international DJs. Weather Festival is the place to be for house and techno fans—a sure crowd-pleaser for all the clubbers out there. In under five years, it has made a name for itself as the festival for electro music and culture. The program for the three-day event includes sets by the best DJs in the world. The lively Banlieues Bleues Festival brings jazz to numerous towns in Seine-Saint-Denis from March to April.
In May, museums open their doors to night owls!
At the end of May, it is the European Night of Museums, a festive, unconventional evening that invites the public to enjoy art and heritage differently. To celebrate the occasion, museums in and around Paris—like sister institutions throughout Europe—are breaking curfew! Concerts and DJ sets are part of the lineup, alongside exhibitions, performances, film screenings and other special events. The action moves northeast for Villette Sonique, the celebrated underground contemporary music festival, which will once again take up residence in Parc de la Villette, with three stages set to welcome established artists and bright new talents alike. And for jazz lovers, the beginning of May gets the Left Bank into the swing of things with the Jazz à Saint-Germain-des-Prés Festival.
No time to waste in June!
Among the must-see events, We Love Green gets top billing. The festival takes place in the Bois de Vincennes and is the greenest, most eco-friendly festival in the Paris area. Its lineup features a little bit of everything: rock, pop, electro and urban music.
Les Bains numériques is worth checking out. The festival, which takes place the first week of June in Enghien-les-Bains, showcases digital artwork, with a focus on Asian trends. The schedule of events boasts exhibitions, installations and concerts, including a giant free concert featuring international artists on a floating stage set up on Lake Enghien.
Summer: the season of music festivals!
In June, the Marche des Fiertés (also known as ‘Gay Pride’) returns for a festive and militant procession through the streets of the city. And that’s just the beginning: summer brings with it the festival season! There’s something for everyone.
Electro fans will love The Peacock Society Festival, at the Parc Floral in early July. Rock-lovers will hardly be left out: Rock en Seine at the Domaine National de Saint-Cloud is the festival for them.
Another major event is Solidays, which will set up camp at the Longchamp Racecourse in late June, with an eclectic lineup ranging from rock to pop by way of electro.
Another major event
Another major event is Solidays, which will set up camp at the Longchamp Racecourse in late June, with an eclectic lineup ranging from rock to pop by way of electro. This summer will also welcome a newbie to the capital’s festival scene: the legendary American Lollapalooza will be holding its first edition in France July 22 and 23 at the Longchamp Racecourse! And at the end of July, the big annual American festival Lollapalooza returns to the Longchamp Racecourse.
And let’s not forget La Fête de la Musique on June 21. In and around Paris—and throughout the country—we celebrate the first day of summer with the sound of music in the streets. Whether they’re professionals or amateurs, all musicians are invited to come out and make some noise!
A festive fall
Be sure not to miss Paris Electronic Week at the end of September. This is the event for electro culture devotees. Conferences and workshops are interspersed with prestigious concerts that all lead up to the celebrated Techno Parade. To the floats on the double!
The MaMA Festival sets the 18th arrondissement swaying to the beat! In mid-October, look out for the dozens of concerts in several key local venues and go along to some of the fifty or so talks on the theme of music.
If you like French chanson, don’t miss Festi’Val de Marne, which gives French lyrics pride of place, whatever the genre (rock, rap, pop, etc.), at a series of concerts in towns throughout the Val-de-Marne.
In early October, it is Nuit Blanche, a major highlight of Parisian nightlife—undoubtedly the most cultural and talked-about event in all of Grand Paris! Pull an all-nighter to explore contemporary art in all its forms and in a number of amazing venues. At the end of the month, the Pitchfork Music Festival Paris celebrates indie music with a thrilling line-up over 3 days at the Halle de la Villette!
To bring fall to a pleasant close, don’t miss the fifth edition of the Festival Kalypso, a festive event showcasing hip-hop dance at key venues in the Val-de-Marne.