The Music Festival celebrates its 40th anniversary: ​​An opportunity to evangelize?


This Tuesday, June 21, 2022, the Fête de la Musique celebrates its 40th anniversary. The streets of France as well as other unexpected places, such as churches, will be invaded by a festive wind. For Christians, this annual event is also an opportunity to proclaim the name of Jesus. 

Rap, classical, jazz, rock or samba played by pros or amateurs: towns, villages will vibrate for the Music Festival, like every June 21 for 40 years and an idea of ​​Jack Lang, then French Minister of Culture.

For many Christians, this feast is an opportunity to sing praises in the streets of France and to evangelize in music! A praise concert can indeed be a good way to talk about Jesus to those who do not know him and spread his love in France.

It has become an institution in France and an event now exported to more than a hundred countries around the world.

In France, the wave of heat wave has passed but the temperature should rise in the evening with the concerts which will follow one another, like every June 21, day of the summer solstice in the northern hemisphere.

All musical genres will rub shoulders, as in La Rochelle (south-west), for example, with an old port under the sign of hard rock / metal and a Notre-Dame church invaded by choirs.

In Paris, among the many initiatives, the Radio France station will crisscross the streets with a sound truck with a DJ, Young Pulse. It's a nice nod to the French singer Jacques Higelin who played on a truck crossing Paris in the early years of the Fête de la Musique.

In 2022, this tank must set off at the beginning of the afternoon near the Parisian Statue of Liberty, dedication to "Make music day" (which can be translated as "make music", an international version of the Fête de la musique) which is to start in New York from, there too, the Statue of Liberty.

In the very courtyard of the Elysée presidential palace, Senegalese star Youssou N'Dour and Ukrainian DJ Xenia, among others, will turn up the volume.

To say that the days preceding the first edition in 1982, Jack Lang, initiator of the event, had "the stage fright" of his life, as he told AFP.

“People were told 'go ahead, get out, make the music in the streets your own', but we were afraid they would stay holed up in their homes. But it worked, ”recalls the man who was appointed minister by President François Mitterrand after the Socialists came to power in 1981.

"The first year, in 1982, it was not a great success, but people played the game and from 1983 it was really on", deciphers Mr. Lang, today at the head of the Institut du monde Arabic (IMA) in Paris.

Jack Lang is the guest of honor this Tuesday for a musical stroll between the neighboring towns of Villeurbanne and Lyon (center-east), before returning to Paris in the evening. He wishes to dedicate this 40th edition to Steve Maia Caniço, who died in 2019 during a controversial police operation during the Music Festival in Nantes (west).

Camille Westphal Perrier (with AFP)

Image credit: Creative Commons / Paris-Secret

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