If you want to see Paris like you’ve never seen it before, then you must absolutely spend a summer solstice here. Or should I say “hear” Paris because summer solstice in the French capital is celebrated each year with the annual Fête de la Musique. This tradition, now more than twenty years old in the City of Light since it was first introduced by the Minister of Culture, is an evening of free song and dance nearly everywhere you go.
From large concerts in some of the most famous landmarks to little local jazz bands on every corner, music fills the city with life. We all look forward to this day as it draws us out to welcome summer. On this longest day of the year it seems like the sun takes forever to set, the night easing into itself just like the music blending together in the streets as you pass from place to place.
For this day, I decided to wear some of my favorite summer makeup to go with the theme of the day — my Juicy Shaker in Cherry Symphony and Hypnôse Dazzling in Brun Acoustique. And this year my musical journey began in the historic Saint Eustache church. It would be impossible to outdo the acoustics of this place. From the massive organ pipes overhead, the sound of Beethoven’s 9th Symphony and Toccata And Fugue In D Minor from Disney’s Fantasia were hauntingly beautiful. But it was the delicate Claire de Lune which followed that nearly moved me to tears as each note floated through this 16th century chapel.
A symphony in front of La Comédie Francaise, a rock concert in the Palais Royal, gentlemen's jazz bands on the bridge, school choirs in the Louvre, it was hard not to stop at every turn and so we did. With every genre there is something for everyone.
I think Fête de la Musique is one of the most alive nights of the year in our city, the feeling is nothing short of magic, something I can’t quite articulate. I hope one day you’ll see for yourself why this is such a special day...