La Fête de Marquette 2011 is coming soon! Come celebrate French Music & Culture starting July 7th through the 10th on Madison's Eastside (South Dickinson & E. Washington). We love co-sponsoring this event because it helps the Wil-Mar neighborhood center and also because it is a great opportunity to bring our community together for some serious summer fun!
Music, Dancing, Food and Friends make La Fete one of Madison's hottest summer events. And it gets better every year!
In its sixth year the free music event, which attracts thousands, celebrates French culture and benefits the Wil-Mar Neighborhood Center, will be staged from July 7 - 10th. The French-themed event occurs on or near Bastille Day (July 14th), the French national holiday.
Musicians from throughout the French-speaking world including North and West Africa, French-speaking Canada, Europe, and the Caribbean will perform throughout the weekend. Artists with roots in the New Orleans, Cajun and Zydeco traditions will again perform primarily on Sunday, Le Jour de Louisiane.
It is hard to recall any Madison music event that could boast a more spectacular or more diverse cast of musical characters. Anders Osborne, Cyril Neville, Rosie Ledet, Glenn David Andrews, Walter "Wolfman" Washington, The Lost Bayou Ramblers and Papa Grows Funk are some of the heavy hitters from Louisiana. While BelO, Maraca, Bombino and Baloji are some of the global celebrities, set to converge on our fair city. De Temps Antan and Raz-de- Marée are two of the finest Quebecois groups from that culturally rich province.
La Fête's music director, Bob Queen, claims this year will trump all previous years in terms of quality, quantity and diversity of musical acts. "These are all world -class groups. Some are making their first trip to this country or region. Anders Osborne is not to be missed. He is playing with his own band (Sat. last) and then joining a group of legendary New Orleans players in a grand finale on Sunday. Glen David Andrews is Troy "Trombone Shorty" Andrews' 6'4" older cousin who may supplant his cousin on this year's stage. Critics have compared Andrews James Brown and Prince. Baloji from Belgium and The Congo is no slouch and his big band will be playing Millenium Park in Chicago and Central Park's Summer Stage (NYC) on his first U.S. tour."
Acoustic Café Breakfast
Another of the festival highlights will be the Sunday morning Acoustic Café Breakfast with a live stage show hosted by 105.5 Triple M's Jonathan Suttin and Kitty Dunn. The Café runs from 9 am to 11:45 am and will feature memorable acoustic performances by Quebec's Raz-de-Marée and Louisiana's Lost Bayou Ramblers. A wait-staffed breakfast of scrumptious quiche prepared by State Street's Barakas is the featured menu item and served to your table by East High School French students and participants of Wil-Mar's Teen program. Sponsored by Alvarado Real Estate Group (yay!).
La Tente De Danse
Because of the incredible, vibrant dance tent sessions last year, La Fete organizers have established a new large tent dedicated to Quebecois and Cajun dance. La Tente De Danse will offer a wall-to-wall dance floor with a stage for live music. Quebec's Raz-de-Marée (Tidal Wave) and Cajun phenoms Ryan Brunet et Les Malfacteurs (The Outlaws) will keep the tent buzzing. There will be a small ticket fee to support this new venue. La Tente De Danse is sponsored by RP's Pasta, MadCat Pet Supplies and Wisconsin Public Radio.
As always, there will be incredible food and drink from a host of vendors including-- Baraka's, Nattspil, Lao Laan-Xang, Smokin' Cantina, authentic Cajun cuisine from Double S BBQ, Southern Style Seafood delights from HMI Catering, Jamerica, Gail Ambrosius Chocolatier, Chocolate Shoppe Ice Cream and many more.
Willy Street Co-op Annual Meeting & Party
The Willy Street Co-op (presenter of the Fête) kicks off the celebration with its annual membership meeting Thursday evening, July 7th. Featured that night are New Orleans' Papa Grows Funk boasting OffBeat Magazine's pianist-of-the-year, John Gros, in the lead. The incredible guitarist Bombino from Niger will show folks why he is taking the world by storm and reminding people of a Tuareg Jimi Hendrix.
The Willy Street Co-op's Annual Meeting & Party is open to the public after 7 pm or become a Co-op equity-paying member (for just $10!) at the event and get a FREE Dinner (including beverage) gifts and chances to win prizes.
The vintage, 1930s-era Ferris Wheel (which was just added last year) will be back and provided a perfect escape (if needed) with picturesque views of the Capital dome and Fête de Marquette's colorful grounds.
This event has grown incredibly and attracts music lovers from all over the Midwest! Hope to see you there!