What's On in Paris - June 2018

Summer festivals 

Summertime is music festival time. Time Out Paris is a great place to start if you want to see the schedule of festival in and around Paris this summer, in French only: Les Festivals de Musique à Paris

June 1-3: Rendez-Vous au Jardins

June 2: Paris Vegan Festival

June 3: Grand Siècle Day at Château Vaux le Vicomte

June 8-11
The Portes d'Or is a chance for all the artistic workshops in the Goutte d'Or (18th arrondissement) to open their doors to the public. Over 65 painters, sculptors, jewelery-makers and many others who live and work in the Goutte d'Or wish to share their creativity. Please come support the community and experience these unique productions.

June 9-10
The artists of the 5th (Mouffetard) and 13th (Butte aux Cailles/Gobelins) districts knows as Lézarts du Bièvre open their studios to the public for two days, 2-8pm. Free entry.

June 12-15
Eighty French and American indie films are in competition in this year's 7th annual Champs Elysées Film Festival. Films are screened at cinemas on and around ‘les Champs’, and there will be many other events, including off-competition screenings, premieres and events where you can meet the cast and directors. A pass to all screenings is €49, the big opening and closing ceremony screenings are additional €20.

June 13
It's "Expat Theatre Night" with Theatre in Paris for a performance of the modern comedy, "The Art of Breaking Up", in the Théâtre Montparnasse. "English speakers based in Paris gather for Paris Expat Theatre Night, to enjoy drinks, meet fellow expats, and see a show at one of the city's many playhouses. The first Expat Night events brought us to see intimate musicals, modern comedies, and some classic French drama. They were such a sell-out success that we’ve decided to create a monthly event!" Tickets €39, book online.

June 15-16
A unique chamber music group, presents their last Music by the Glass event of the season with two evenings of Saint-Saëns and Schumann with the Quatuor Abegg, followed by a wine tasting and meeting with the musicians. The first date is in a private residence of one of their patrons in the 14th arrondisement, the second in the historic and elegant Reid Hall in the 6th. Tickets €25 (wine and hors d'oeuvres included). Register on the website; places limited. 

June 21 
Fête de la Musique! 
This annual all-night music festival takes place throughout France, but in Paris the whole city is overtaken: public spaces, bars, cafés, parks, sidewalks and even the streets are closed off for live music of every kind, performed by both famous and amateur musicians, from late afternoon through early morning, all concerts are free and open to everyone. Please note the main metro lines will be running all night, but it will be hard to get around by taxi because of road closures (and Vélibs are typically locked down for the night). Bring your earplugs if you expect to try and sleep!

June 22-24
Solidays is one of the best summer music festivals in France. For the 20th anniversary of the festival, this year's acts include David Guetta, Mr Oizo, and The Kills, and over 160,000 attendees are expected to join the fight against AIDS at Paris-Longchamp racecourse. Day passes start at €39.  

June 27-August 7
The annual summer sales take place this year for five weeks throughout France, primarily in clothing stores, but pretty much everything is on sale now. And although most bloggers still get all frothy at the news, the sales are no longer just twice annually, so it's not the big deal it used to be. 

June 28-30
Zero Waste Festival: Parisians interested in knowing more about how to save the planet with a Zero Waste lifestyle will gather at the Cabaret Sauvage for three days of info stands, talks, upcycling and repair workshops, urban hikes, and a visit of a "model zero waste home". Day passes €25, or three-day passes for €60, see the program online

June 30-July 22
The 25th annual Paris Jazz Festival takes place all summer; come enjoy traditional Parisian and international jazz music in the Bois de Vincennes's Parc Floral. Concerts are free; entry to the park is €2.50. 

Other Paris calendar links

▪       For French Theatre with English surtitles: Theatre in Paris 

▪       For general events around Paris (including sports): Que Faire à Paris?

▪       For literary events, readings, and classes: Monthly Paris Listing

▪       For mainstream events visit the Paris Office of Tourism


What's On in Paris - May 2018

Official May Holidays 

May 1st: Fête du Travail (Most museums closed)

May 8th: Fête de la Victoire 1945 (V-Day WWII)

May 10th: Ascension

May 21st: Pentecost Monday 

May 1 It's the annual Fête du Travail in France, one of the biggest national holidays when almost every museum and shop is closed. Most museums are closed but some are open, as are the Tour Eiffel and Notre Dame – see what's open May 1st for a full list. Traditionally there are parades by French workers' unions. Whatever the case, call ahead to make sure the places you're going are open and count on public transport disruptions.

May 5-6
The largest gardening festival in Versailles takes place this weekend at the 10th annual Esprit Jardin: L'Art du Jardin, with free entrance exceptionally to the Potager du Roi. With more than 80 exhibitors, the festival runs from 10am-7pm in the Quartier St-Louis: rue du Maréchal Joffre, rue d'Anjou, Carré à l'Avoine, Potager du Roi et Parc Balbi. Free entry.

Through May 8
The annual Foire de Paris (Paris Fair) is one of the biggest events of the year, occupying the entire Paris Expo Porte de Versailles (15th arr.) with hall after hall of food and wine, home and garden, fashion and accessories, travel and world cultures, arts and crafts, the famous Inventions Contest, and a ‘Makers Fair’. It's chaos, it's fascinating, and there's always something interesting to learn (or buy, or eat). Just don't go on the weekend unless you like being trampled! 

May 18 (monthly event)
Theatre in Paris is hosting their second Expats Theatre Night with the show "Les Virtuoses" (with english subtitles above the stage) at the Théâtre Fontaine. "The Virtuoso brothers Mathias and Julien are unequivocally captivating on the piano and utterly hypnotizing with their clownish, yet tasteful magic tricks. Leaving audiences awestruck, Les Virtuoses is like something you’d see on Broadway, but with a Parisian twist. Perfect for the whole family!." Tickets include a pre-show walking tour of the Comédie Française (5pm), the show itself with English-translated program, and post-show drinks at the after-party. The first two guests who use the discount code "SECRETSOFPARIS" get 10% off their tickets. Sign up here. Check back for the next event in June!

May 18-20
One of the biggest flower shows in France, Journées des Plantes de Chantilly(formerly Courson), takes place this weekend at the Chateau de Chantilly, just 45 minutes north of Paris from the Gare du Nord. Entry €20 (or €17 if you get your tickets online before May 17).

May 19
Check out your favorite Paris museum at night during the 14th annual Nuit Européenne des Musées, when all over Europe museums stay open until midnight...for free! Special flashlight tours, live music, installment arts, film screenings, costumed museum guides, and other fun events throughout the evening at each museum.

May 23-27
The 12th annual Fête de la Nature is a five-day festival celebrating nature with a full program of 5000 free events in parks, gardens, nature preserves and forests all over the country, with 36 events in Paris alone.

May 25
Chamber music and a three-course meal in a beautiful setting, tonight the Café de la Paix at the Hotel InterContinental (Opéra) is hosting "Bravo!" an event in support of Sinfonietta, a unique chamber music ensemble featuring some of the best up-and-coming musicians from around the world. Tickets are €60, and since there are just 24 places you'll want to sign up quick! 

May 25
Best-selling author Stephen Clarke, known for his fictional series of a British expat in Paris that started with "A Year in the Merde" and his hilarious history book about the relationship between England and France "1000 Years of Annoying the French", is talking about his latest book "The French Revolution: What Went Wrong" tonight at the Abbey Bookshop (29 rue de la Parchiminerie, 5th, M° St Michel) from 7:30pm. Snacks and wine, books available for signing, and the usual good humor. Free entry, no RSVP needed. 

May 25-28
The 29th annual Artists' Open Studios in Belleville takes place for four days in over 120 ateliers in Belleville (centered on the 19th and 11th arrondissements). It's a great chance to see some real Paris neighborhoods, meet local artists, and of course purchase some lovely artworks! See a map of all the open studios, or visit the HQ at Galerie des AAB (1 rue Picabia, 19th, metro Couronnes). Free entry. Studios are open 2-8pm over the four days of the event.

May 26-27
Les Frigos, one of the oldest artists "squats" in Paris (legalized over 35 years ago) houses 200 artists of all kinds in a 1920s refridgerated warehouse converted into ateliers near the Bibliothèque François Mitterrand (13th). This weekend they're open to the public for their annual Portes Ouvertes, with live music, entertainment, and art for sale directly from the artists. Free entry Saturday 2-10pm and Sunday 2-8pm.

May 27
American Memorial Day Ceremonies will take place in and around Paris at the Escadrille Lafayette Memorial, American Legion Mausoleum, American Church of Paris, US Military Cemetery in Suresnes, and Arc de Triomphe. 

Plan Ahead for June

June 1-3: Rendez-Vous au Jardins

June 2: Paris Vegan Festival

June 3: Grand Siècle Day at Château Vaux le Vicomte

June 15-16: Music by the Glass 

June 21: Fête de la Musique


Other Paris calendar links

▪       For French Theatre with English surtitles: Theatre in Paris 

▪       For general events around Paris (including sports): Que Faire à Paris?

▪       For literary events, readings, and classes: Monthly Paris Listing

▪       For mainstream events visit the Paris Office of Tourism