The Festival d’été de Québec Celebrates a Star-Struck 45th Anniversary

The Festival d’été de Québec Celebrates a Star-Struck 45th Anniversary


Quebec City, April 23, 2012 – What does the 45th Festival d’été de Québec have in store for us this year? True to form, the Festival has lined up top international stars and legends of rock along with the best of world music, indie-rock and folk. There will be room for nostalgia and delirium, for song, for emerging talent and a first this year, an all-electro night! Some names? Bon Jovi, Johnny Hallyday, The Offspring, Vincent Vallières, Metric, Skrillex, Patrick Watson, Sarah McLachlan, Radio Radio, Aerosmith, Beirut, Ariane Moffatt, The Barr Brothers, LMFAO, Mastodon, Grimskunk, Inna Modja, City and Colour, Big Boi, Tedeschi Trucks Band, Oliver Mtukudzi and dozens more.

Bon Jovi, courtesy of

”It’s always easy to say that there will be something for everyone, but this case it’s true. What we’re aiming for is to please the most people possible by giving them the best music out there right now. The Festival is like a snapshot of the latest hits, of the next big thing and of legendary talent that we can never get enough of. We’re convinced that this will be a brilliant 45th anniversary that will live up to the high expectations of our thousands of festival fans!” said Daniel Gélinas, general manager of the Festival d’été de Québec.

Once again this year, the Festival opens in French. This time, the language that is shared by millions of people all over the world will be sung, played and recited on every outdoor Festival stage.
”With Quebec City hosting the first Forum mondial de la langue française, this was the perfect opportunity to celebrate the language that both unites and defines us. Delightfully romantic, provocative, funny, entertaining and lively, the French language will be heard everywhere on the evening of July 5,” added Marie-France Poulin, member of the board of the Festival d’été de Québec.
Québec’s talented singer Marième will kick off the evening. Her sunny music, with its reggae and pop beat, will liven up the Hydro-Québec stage at Place Metro in Place d’Youville starting at 6 p.m. Next, singer and guitarist Sidi Touré from Mali, with his warm and irresistible blend of blues, traditional music, rock and western. Then the party takes off with Radio Radio’s electro rap. These Acadian musicians sing in French and in the slang called chiac, and will be accompanied by a drummer and trumpet player. So put on your dancing shoes!

It will be party time at Parc de la Francophonie too, with a Québec evening start to finish featuring Bodh’aktan, Papillon and Mononc’ Serge. The seven musicians that make up Bodh’aktan will be first up on the Loto-Québec stage. Their traditional music is a lively mix of polka, Celtic, punk, and folk with a dash of humour and some rock to warm up the crowd. Papillon, with its happy, derisive brand of dirty rock, should keep things rolling along with special guest, Lucien Francoeur. Then Mononc’ Serge, with his witty, pointed humour, promises lots of laughs and an upbeat evening!

The Bell stage on the Plains of Abraham will be the scene of a show specially produced for the Forum mondial de la langue française, Le Français d’abord. As Pierre Boileau, the director of this super variety show, who also directed Rencontres and Paris-Québec à travers la chanson in 2008 for the 400th anniversary of Québec City, said, ”We’ll be celebrating all the wealth of francophone culture, its accents, its sounds and its music, which vary from one continent, and even one country, to the next.”
The participating artists will be announced in early June.

”Diversity, balance and originality. This is what we kept in mind as we put together our program, a program that we’re very proud of”, explained Louis Bellavance, program coordinator for the Festival d’été de Québec, as the 2012 program was made public.
July 6 – LMFAO will have a young crowd out in force decked out in their day-glo duds, afros and rockin’ glasses to party!
July 8 – Get ready for Misteur Valaire and Jean Leloup. First, the electro pop masters roll out the big guns: six dancers and three guests, including Fanny Bloom, Bran Van 3000’s Liquid and Benny BBQ. Then enter Leloup, with his greatest hits and inimitable style!
July 9 – A master stroke– Bon Jovi! The US ambassadors of rock’n roll come to Quebec City at last for their only show in Canada. Their appearances here are rare; the last show was back in 2001. With a long list of hits to choose from, this concert promises to draw a pumped-up crowd!
July 10 – French rocker and superstar Johnny Hallyday brings his full-scale production to Quebec City for the first time. Up first, Don Felder, famed guitarist composer and former member of The Eagles, who will be playing some of their greatest hits.
July 11 – A mega electro party! The Festival’s first ‘technofest’ stars Skrillex, five-time nominees at the last Grammy Awards, along with a string of musicians and DJs. A super production featuring three different stages, a spaceship, lasers and fireworks, ‘technofest’ will be back every year.
July 12 – The legendary rock band, Aerosmith! Still as cool and original as ever after 30 years– the idols of more than one generation– they’ll be pulling out all the stops. And to open, Canada’s own Our Lady Peace is back with their chart-topping new hit, Allowance.
July 13 – Singer songwriter Sarah McLachlan interrupts her symphonic tour for this single performance with her musicians.
July 14 – Punk-rock at its best with The Offspring. Dominating the scene in the late 90s, they’re back stronger than ever in 2012 with a new album. Part of the evening, Mute, rising Québec talent to watch for.
July 15 – Popular Québec singer songwriter Vincent Vallières closes the Festival with his guests, backup singers, horns and projections in a surprised-filled evening produced and directed by Karkwa’s own Louis-Jean Cormier. And to get things rolling, Marie-Pierre Arthur.

This year, the stage has a new sponsor and will now be the Loto-Québec stage.
”This popular stage has a unique ambiance that makes the Festival a very special experience both for its big-name artists and the audience,” said Lucie Lamoureux, director of corporate sponsorship and social commitment. ”In partnership with the Festival d’été de Québec, Loto-Québec contributes to the social and economic vitality of Québec while sharing some very intense moments with the public.”

Festival fans know this stage is the place to go for new talent, old favourites and original shows. At least two all-Québec nights are on the program. First, Pierre Lapointe and his Mal aimés on July 9 for a groovy show that’s sure to rock, with Salomé Leclerc and Monogrenade setting the tone. On July 10, the Festival gives Patrick Watson carte blanche for an evening of superb folk music. His guests: Avec pas d’casque, Thus:Owls and Sweden’s Loney, dear. The eleven musicians onstage with him will be moving from one band to the next. Two great evenings!

Next, it’s time for some blues with the Tedeschi Trucks Band, the best blues album Grammy winners last February. Opening for these two outstanding musicians are Scrapomatic and Shane Murphy.
Then, heavy rock and an apocalyptic atmosphere, courtesy of A Perfect Murder, Grimskunk and Mastodon. And don’t miss Beirut this time; they left a lot of people out on the sidewalk two years ago; also watch for the up and coming Barr Brothers, and the very popular City and Colour. Led by Dallas Green, the band shifts from the rock of Alexisonfire to the indie-folk sound of their latest planetary success that plays to sold-out crowds everywhere they go.

Get ready for hours of dancing to the sound of Half Moon Run and Metric, whose new album comes out in mid-June, and for hip-hop fans, a ‘krazy’ night is lined up with K-os, Koriass and Big Boi. This is the same Big Boi who, with André 3000, makes up the famed duo Outkast, so get there early!

Finally, this is where Renée Martel, Québec’s own Queen of Country, will be celebrating her 60 years in show business. A surprise-filled anniversary with Paul Daraîche, Pierre Flynn and Mara Tremblay. Laurence Hélie opens the show, followed by Diane Tell.

Get ready for some hot nights partying and dancing to great world beat, funk, reggae and soul!
These festive evenings of folk, pop, soul and rockabilly music have lined up the Lost Bayou Ramblers, Charles Bradley & His Extraordinaires and Inna Modja, the young Malian singer who is taking Europe by storm, along with La Chiva Gantiva, made up of Walloon, Flemish, Columbian and Vietnamese musicians. Also a favourite of many festival fans, the Orchestre Poly-Rythmo de Cotonou, not to mention that icon of soul, Bettye LaVette, and a fresh talent to discover, Donavon Frankenreiter!
Don’t miss the great world music performances by Les Tambours de Brazza, Sierra Leone’s Refugee All Stars and Zimbabwe’s legendary Oliver Mtukudzi, or the line up featuring Besh o DroM from Hungary, Boulevard des Airs, the spiritual sons of Tryo, and the French-Algerian group, Gnawa Diffusion. Québec’s own Jah & I kicks off a reggae night in honor of the legendary Wailers.
There will be plenty of funk with the American bands Orgone, Soul Rebels and Galactic, plus the surprising Japanese band Osaka Monaurail, hip-hop with Deltron 3030 and world electro with Delhi 2 Dublin. Not to mention an amazing brass band from Serbia, the Slobodan Salijevic Orkestar.

Caracol, Kathleen Edwards and Pascale Picard Band are headlining an evening of female singers. Three great voices, three distinctive rhythms, three magic moments!

This stage starts to heat up at noon with artists such as Tire le coyote, Gypsophilia, Irreverend James & the Critical Mass Choir, Klô Pelgag, Bombolessé, Canailles, Chinatown, Hey Rosetta! and Les Revenants.

To wrap up these 11 days of music, the Festival d’été de Québec and Lucky Uke are challenging festival goers to beat the Guiness record for the most ukulele players! There were 1,200 at last year’s Just for Laughs Festival in Montreal. How many will be playing at Place d’Youville on Sunday, July 15 at 3:30? Join the crowd!

Presented by Groupe Voyages Québec, these shows are real crowd pleasers night after night.
At the Impérial de Québec, a program that’s sure to draw big crowds to shows that true music lovers wouldn’t miss.
Hip-hop night brings together Zoxea, a founding member of the Sages Poètes de la Rue, the French cult rap band, Anodadjay, Webster and Mauvais Acte, and an all-metal night with the Capitale du Métal is in the works.
Lots of pop and electro with some US bands here for the first time, Cults and !!! (say chk, chk, chk), along with France’s Yuksek, Canadian Sarah Slean and Québec’s own Grimes, Midnight Romeo, Foxtrott and Ariane Moffatt, who has a great new album out.
Plus indie with Kandle and Walk Off the Earth, reggae with The Beatdown and for jazz lovers, Sophie Milman.
Nanette Workman will wrap up the series in style with Frank Marino, Steve Hill, Bob Walsh and Guy Bélanger.
More names will be announced later along with the programs for the Largo resto-club, the Casbah and the Cercle.
For program details, go to

The 45th edition of the Festival de Québec will be held from July 5 to 15, 2012.

The Festival d’été de Québec is presented by Bell in collaboration with Molson Dry.

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