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The post-war years in France were marked by an artistic renaissance that led to the creation of the Festival de Cannes in 1946, soon followed by the Festival d’Avignon in 1947.
In opera, the renaissance was initiated by an avid connoisseur, an art enthusiast with an insatiable curiosity, Gabriel Dussurget, whose idea to create a music festival in Provence benefitted from the financial support of Lily Pastré, a countess and prominent member of the high society in Marseille, and a generous patron of the arts. Lily Pastré suggested the use of her mansion in the borough Montredon as the venue for the event, a choice she believed would contribute to the revival of the Phoenician city. Indeed the Festival was born only three years after the end of the war, during a period when, after the defeat of 1940 and the Occupation, there was a widespread desire to restore a positive image of France. But the location proved inappropriate. After searching throughout the region, they chose the city of Aix-en-Provence. There Gabriel Dussurget set his heart on the courtyard of the archbishop’s palace, a rare find that he described soberly as having, “leprous walls, a fountain without any water of course and a tree that reached like a hand towards the sky”.
Festival international d’art lyrique d’Aix-en-Provence
La Boutique Du Festival
Palais De L’ancien Archevęché
+ 33 (0) 4 34 08 02 17
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