The festival, which lasts about two months, presents its concerts in several locations in the Lanaudière region, notably in Joliette, at the Cathedral and in the Salle Rolland-Brunelle of the Cegep, but also in historic churches of neighbouring cities, and at the Camp musical de Lanaudière on the shores of Lake Priscault in Saint-Côme. On 17 Jul 1989 the festival welcomed its first audience in an outdoor amphitheatre, situated near the city of Joliette, containing 2000 sheltered seats and a seating capacity of up to 8000 on the lawns. Some festival seasons have featured programs with special themes: Schubert (1978), Beethoven (1979), Mozart (1980), 'Mostly Bach' (1985), and Tchaikovsky, César Franck, and Martinu° (1990). Among the major events of the festival have been the performances of Wilhelmenia Fernandez (1985-7, 1989), Michel Legrand and Julia Migenes-Johnson (1985), Renata Scotto (1986), Neville Marriner and the Academy of St-Martin-in-the-Fields (1987), Rudolf Nureyev, Jeanne Moreau, and Vlado Perlemuter (1988), and Mstislav Rostropovitch (1990). Canadian musicians who have performed in concert include the duo-pianists Victor Bouchard and Renée Morisset, Angèle Dubeau, Marc-André Hamelin, Anton Kuerti, André Laplante, Louis Lortie, Marie-Danielle Parent, Louis and Gino Quilico, Joseph Rouleau, and Raoul Sosa. Ensembles and large-scale groups have also been invited, including the Atelier lyrique of the Opéra de Montréal, the Choeurs de France, the Conservatoire de musique du Québec Orchestra, the Messiaen Quartet, the Morency Quartet, the MSO, I Musici de Montréal, the Orchestre métropolitain, the JM World Orchestra, the Quebec Symphony Orchestra, and the Tokyo SO.
Several operas have been presented in concert version, including Faust and The Magic Flute (1986), Boris Godunov and The Pearl Fishers (1988), and Prince Igor and Orpheus and Euridice (1989). In 1987 Gilles Tremblay conducted his Vêpres de la Vierge. Starting in 1984, the festival began offering popular music and jazz. Some of the performers featured have included the François Bourassa Trio, the Dave Brubeck Quartet, Francis Cabrel, Céline Dion, Diane Dufresne, Michel Fugain, the Keith Jarrett Trio, Daniel Lavoie, Paul Piché, Michel Rivard, Oscar Peterson, Fabienne Thibeault, and Gilles Vigneault. The rock opera Starmania was performed in 1986. From 1988 onwards, several of the festival's concerts have been broadcast on CBC radio. In 1991 a CD titled Great Moments: Festival international de Lanaudière was issued (ATMA ATM-29705) featuring, among others, Bouchard and Morisset, Marc-André Hamelin with the Morency Quartet, I Musici de Montréal, Alvaro Pierri, and Raoul Sosa.
Author Claire Rhéaume, Renée Maheu
Dumesnil, Thérèse. 'Le Festival d'été de Lanaudière et son symbole vivant: Fernand Lindsay, c.s.v'. Aria, vol 9, Summer 1986
Quintal, Michelle. 'Le Festival d'été de Lanaudière,' L'Analyste, 23, Autumn 1988
Lesage, Micheline. 'Le Festival international de Lanaudière,' Gestion, Feb 1989
Links to Other Sites
The Festival international de Lanaudière
The website for the Festival de Lanaudière, held each summer in picturesque Joliette, Québec. Features outstanding orchestras and soloists from Canada and around the world.