A festival-filled summer on the West Coast of the United States

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A festival-filled summer on the West Coast of the United States

This summer promises to be eventful. Here you are ready to explore the famous West Coast of the United States through its plentiful cultural festivals. And we're off!

A festival-filled summer on the West Coast of the United States

A jazzy ambience down by the sea in San Diego

At the end of June, Californian cities are a real paradise, buzzing with many shows, concerts and festivals! From Los Angeles, make a little detour southwards to San Diego, a journey of less than two hours. In this season, you will doubtless take full advantage of its sunny Mediterranean climate, its superb beaches and its Balboa Park.

It is in this idyllic location that the Smooth Jazz Festival will take place, on 28, 29 and 30 June. For the third year running, the city will thrill to the sound of this mellow variety of jazz and soul influences. The event is run by Eric Darius, in turn a saxophonist, singer-songwriter, producer and educator. All lovers of great music will get together in the superb setting of the San Diego Marina for open-air concerts, in a very informal atmosphere against a backdrop of the sea and pleasure craft. One of the main attractions of the 2019 festival will be the captivating rhythms of Boney James, an instrumentalist who has sold three million albums.

Smooth Jazz Festival
From 28 to 30 June 2019
Embarcadero Marina Park North
400 Kettner Blvd
San Diego, CA 92101
United States of America
+1 562 424 0013
sandiegosmoothjazzfestival.com/

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A festival-filled summer on the West Coast of the United States

Sound, fury and zen in Los Angeles

A little further north, Los Angeles awaits. During your stay, you are bound to hear talk of the Sound and Fury Festival which will take place on 12 and 13 July. For this unmissable event for punk music lovers, several stages are erected in vibrant Downtown Los Angeles (DTLA), from the Belasco Theatre to Highland Park. The atmosphere here is supercharged with elated artists and spectators totally dedicated to this exceptional musical occasion.

Nisei Week will no doubt be more conducive to tranquillity and intercultural discoveries. This year the Japanese festival will take place from 10 to 18 August. It showcases the culture of the Empire of the Rising Sun through its musical tradition during dances, as well as its gastronomy and martial arts, with several karate demonstrations. The event comes to an end with a superb colourful parade along San Pedro Street. The joyful atmosphere will almost make you want to stay a longer, so you do not miss anything of the week.

Sound and Fury Festival
12 and 13 July 2019
The Belasco Theatre
1050 S. Hill Street
90015 Los Angeles
United States of America
soundandfury.la/

Nisei Week
From 10 to 18 August 2019
Los Angeles
United States of America
www.niseiweek.org/

 

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A festival-filled summer on the West Coast of the United States

Hamlet in starlet country

Lovers of serious theatre will be delighted by the programme of the Shakespeare Festival which takes place from 29 June to 1 September 2019, still in Los Angeles. The free performances are given by the Independent Shakespeare Company.

Everything takes place in Griffith Park, well-known as the site of an astronomical observatory with a hilly landscape which enchants visitors. Turn up at 5 pm on the dot: you will find yourself in the open air in an oasis of greenery to watch a performance of Macbeth, Hamlet or A Midsummer Night's Dream, in the balminess of a Californian evening. You will be delighted by the iconic Shakespearean characters which make their appearance. A little advice for a perfect evening: bring a picnic, something to sit on, (folding chair, a throw) and a jumper. Surprise: you might be invited to climb onto the stage to take part in an improvisation, of which only the troupe knows the secret.

Shakespeare Festival
From 29 June to 1 September 2019
Griffith Park
4730 Crystal Springs Dr
Los Angeles, CA 90027
United States of America
+1 818 710 6306
www.iscla.org/

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A festival-filled summer on the West Coast of the United States

The warmth of Spain in the heart of Santa Barbara

Make your way next to Santa Barbara. From 31 July to 4 August 2019, Old Spanish Days will take over the American city, as it has done for the last 85 years. The theme this year? “Community spirit”, to confirm the importance of the cultural ties which unite the inhabitants of this multiethnic city. Santa Barbara will quiver with joy to the sound of its mariachi bands, their music ringing out cheerfully, with trumpets leading the way. These figures of Mexican folklore are an integral part of Hispanic civilisation, so much so that UNESCO has inscribed mariachi music on its Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity list.

You will also have the opportunity to witness a procession in the purest Spanish tradition. Down the wide sun-soaked streets of Santa Barbara, the most beautiful flamenco costumes, and many others besides, make their way proudly through a beaming crowd.

For a full fiesta experience, you can even purchase a traditional costume on Saturday 13 July during a special sale, with flounces and colours to the fore.

Old Spanish Days
From 31 July to 4 August 2019
Santa Barbara
United States of America
oldspanishdays-fiesta.org/
+1 805 962 8101

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A festival-filled summer on the West Coast of the United States

San Francisco: culture in an oasis of greenery

In San Francisco, from the 4 May to 28 October, the Yerba Buena Gardens Festival sets up its stall in the park of the same name. For six months, these beautiful gardens come to life with events and numerous cultural activities. The great melodies of the classics rub shoulders with world music and jazz, contemporary dance is interspersed with more traditional rhythms, while vibrant and colourful theatrical and circus performances take the stage… Some people recite poetry, while others exhibit their artistic creations. There is something for all ages, tastes, talents and cultures. The aim of the event is to promote San Francisco's cultural diversity and to encourage people to broaden their minds. Access to all events is free, in the hope that art can find a place in everyone's heart.

Yerba Buena Gardens Festival
From 4 May to 28 October 2019
760 Howard St
San Francisco CA 94103
United States of America
+1 415-543-1718
ybgfestival.org/

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