Avignon during the festival

Jul 21st, 2012, 09:10 AM
  #1  
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Avignon during the festival

It's kind of late to try to visit this year, since there is only one week left, but I consider the Avignon festival to be a must every year in July, and I have been going there for more than 15 years in a row.

It really has something for everyone in terms of performances, it allows you to decide to see something spontaneously most of the time, it is not expensive, and there is no need to speak French to appreciate hundreds of the possible shows.

Here is what I did during 4 days this week: http://tinyurl.com/ckwwscp
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Jul 21st, 2012, 11:24 AM
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So many choices. Do you know in advance what's going to be there and narrow it down some? Is there any way to tap into word of mouth when you get there? How many shows is it theoretically possible to see in one day for a person with stamina (not me)?

Just walking the streets and seeing the crowds would be fun for me.
Coquelicot is online now  
Jul 21st, 2012, 12:02 PM
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Wonderful pictures, and you have captured the spirit of the festival, it seems!
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Jul 21st, 2012, 12:27 PM
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Totally impossible to narrow things down, Coquelicot. I have to make a lot of snap decisions, particularly when I have chosen a play at 14.00 that is sold out and I start looking to see if I can run and see something else at 14.15 because I have my sights set on another play at 16.30 and have to be sure that I will be out in time.

Sometimes I discover something extraordinary and sometimes it is total crap.

I was exceptionally lucky this year, because I went to 11 plays and only one of them was bad (and it wasn't even bad, because it was well acted and cleverly directed -- but it was boring).
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Jul 21st, 2012, 12:43 PM
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Thanks Kerouac!!! Really good, and most interesting to me as we are going to Avignon next september
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Jul 21st, 2012, 12:51 PM
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Kerouac.
Any "insider tips? Special restaurants or places to see beyond the most well known?
Thanks!!!
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Jul 21st, 2012, 02:04 PM
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Hi Kerouac, great pics - merci.

Is this event something like the FRINGE FESTIVAL in Edinburgh?
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Jul 21st, 2012, 02:56 PM
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I don't know, latedaytraveler. Does the Edinburgh festival have 1200 different spectacles to see?
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Jul 22nd, 2012, 07:58 AM
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Wonderful to see Avignon's festive spirit (wonderful to see Avignon anytime.) Your photos also record the special tang of French theatrical posters and promotions.
Edinburgh has two festivals, the mainstream original and the Fringe that originally opened in opposition or at least as an alternative. They now co-exist amicably, at least to outside eyes. According to Wikipedia, the Fringe alone had more than 2500 shows in 2011. In both cities there is always room for more.
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Jul 22nd, 2012, 08:53 AM
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Same for Avignon -- the official festival is a very dignified yet cutting edge event and has learned to live with the Off for the past 25 years or so.

Is that 2500 shows or 2500 different spectacles? The 1200 'Off' shows in Avignon are generally required to give 22 performances during the entire duration of the Off.
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Jul 25th, 2012, 06:16 AM
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If anybody is interested, here is the overview of the spectacles that I actually saw: http://tinyurl.com/dx6xsms
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Jul 25th, 2012, 06:47 AM
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Amazing! I had forgotten how pretty Avignon is with its stone buildings and blue shutters.

Merci, kerouac.
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Jul 25th, 2012, 07:22 AM
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Here are a few notes about how to appreciate this wonderful city:

http://andrewchum.blogspot.co.uk/2012/05/avignon.html
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Jul 25th, 2012, 07:33 AM
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kerouac,

We were just based in Avignon for a week so got to walk around during partial days between daytrips.

Interesting that I recognized some of the places in your photos but not most.

Then again, a lot are very close up of the venues.

Still, it brings back instant memories of our visit.

Thanks.
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Jul 25th, 2012, 10:42 AM
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Wonderful photos of a wonderful city. Thank you.
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Jul 25th, 2012, 12:47 PM
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AndrewLondon - Love your capsule history of Avignon!
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Jul 25th, 2012, 12:48 PM
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Kerouac - Another really interesting contribution. I would love to have seen a couple of these shows.
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Jul 25th, 2012, 01:46 PM
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All it takes is to schedule a few days there around the middle of July....
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Jul 26th, 2012, 08:54 AM
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Quelle spectacle! (and yes, I meant that in the singular). It's still a show without even seeing an actual show/performance!

Thanks for another great report. I haven't been to Avignon in over ten years, and I had forgotten how lovely it is. Looks like you had great weather, too.
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Jul 26th, 2012, 10:38 AM
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Lovely pictorial. I especially liked the night photos. It's always interesting to see your view on other parts of France as well as your views of Paris.

We'll look forward to your next adventure.
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