This year, the Festival de Musique Émergente en Abitibi-Témiscamingue (FME) celebrates its fifteenth anniversary. Every year, dozens of artists drive up the 117 North along with over 100 Canadian and international music industry professionals and thousands of festivalgoers. And every year, the Festival aims higher—this year is no exception!
Nearly 70 artists will perform in Rouyn-Noranda on Labour Day Weekend. The full schedule will be published on Tuesday, July 11, but in the meantime, the Festival is proud to announce the following shows: A Tribe Called Red will kick off the festival on 7th Street on Thursday, August 31, sharing the stage with Pierre Kwenders and La Bronze.
On Sunday, September 3, the group of artists responsible for the tribute album Desjardins, on l’aime-tu will perform at the outdoor stage at Kiwanis Lake for the festival’s closing concert, presented by Sirius XM in collaboration with the City of Rouyn-Noranda. This is the one and only opportunity to see this spectacular show in Abitibi-Témiscamingue this summer!
Philippe B will come to present music from his new album La nuit vidéo, while Saskatchewanian Andy Shauf will grace us with his delicate folk music. The show also features Ludovic Alarie, Sarah Toussaint-Léveillé, Geoffroy, FUUDGE, along with veteran rockers Canailles and festival stalwart JF Lemieux with his new project Afrikana Soul Sister. In collaboration with Montreal’s Distorsion Psych Fest, we are proud to present rock acts Atsuko Chiba, Paul Jacobs, and Sunwatchers; and finally, New Yorker Emily Wells will drop by Rouyn-Noranda as part of her Quebec tour.
Basic and deluxe festival passports go on sale Wednesday, June 7 at noon, while single tickets are available as of Tuesday, July 11. Deluxe Passport holders will have access to a VIP area during the closing concert.
Collaboration with the Pikogan Pow Wow
As part of CULTURAT, an initiative led by Tourisme Abitibi-Témiscamingue to bring cultural communities together through the arts, members of the Pikogan Pow Wow organizing committee and the FME engaged in a rich and inspiring exchange throughout 2016. This artistic and cultural collaboration aims to establish a dialogue between two communities that share Abitibi-Témiscamingue. The results of this yearlong series of fruitful meetings will be presented at the Pikogan Pow Wow on June 10–11 and at the FME from August 31 to September 3.
Pow Wow — June 10–11
As part of this artistic collaboration, and to celebrate the fifth anniversary of the Pikogan Pow Wow, the giant glowing letters POW WOW ABITIBIWINNI, fashioned by the FME team, were installed by the Harricana River on May 28, where they will remain until Monday, June 12. During the Pow Wow, other scenic elements designed and built in collaboration with the FME will be installed throughout the site. The FME invites all festivalgoers to attend the Pow Wow. The schedule can be found on the Pow Wow Facebook page.
FME — August 31–September 3
On Friday, September 1, thanks to the support of Heritage Canada and the Canada 150 Fund, a huge free show will be staged on the banks of Lake Osisko. This unique concert, presented in collaboration with the Pikogan Pow Wow, will lead the audience on a voyage of discovery, transported by glorious music, surprised and delighted by performing artists along with grand stagecraft.
To celebrate its fifteenth anniversary, the FME is organizing events outside Abitibi-Témiscamingue in the coming months. First, on June 17, residents of the Quebec City region will be treated to the ROYAL de l’Île d’Orléans mini-festival. Organized in collaboration with Cassis Monna & Filles, the event—already sold out—features six gifted artists: Louis-Jean Cormier, Jesse Mac Cormack, Les Hay Babies, Aliocha, Julien Sagot , and Patrick Watson—as well as a few surprises!
On June 11, FME will be featured at Piknic Électronik, at the Moog Audio Stage in Montreal’s Jean Drapeau Park. Starting at 2 pm, Feu St-Antoine, Co/ntry (Celestial Program Select), and Woulg will take turns spinning records to the delight of Piknik’s indefatigable dancers.
Finally, the 2GPU show, inaugurated at the 2016 edition of the FME, will embark on a Canadian and European tour over the next few months. This immersive, hypnotic 3D experience, performed live in real time with music by Dear Criminals, was premiered in Abitibi-Témiscamingue. A collaboration between David Paquin, director of the Creative and New Media department at UQAT and Master’s student Casey Cotes-Turpin, 2GPU is a tremendous showcase for FME and UQAT abroad. Tour dates will be announced shortly.