Le Festival International de Piano de La Roque d’Anthéron is an international piano festival, founded in 1981 by René Martin, artistic director of classical music festivals, and Paul Onoratini, then mayor of the city of La Roque d’Anthéron in France. The festival takes place every summer in the Park of the Château de Florans. Since its birth, the festival has welcomed more than 700 pianists from all over the world, hosted 2420 concerts and received no less than 2 million spectators.
TGE: How is your organization dealing with the current pandemic situation? Do you have some specific initiatives happening for the moment?
Mrs. Roz: In 2020, our festival was among the few that still took place despite the pandemic. Until the last minute, we weren’t sure if the festival could take place, and we only started selling tickets in June while the festival took place in August. Since this was supposed to be the 40th edition, we wanted to invite large orchestras to celebrate the event, but we had to completely reinvent the program and only invite solo artists or small chamber music ensembles.
We are also lucky that our festival takes place outside and that we have more than 2000 seats, which made it easier to follow social distancing measures. We managed to make it work, even if we could only use 1/3 of our seating capacity, spectators had to wear masks to walk around, and even couples had to sit separately.
We are very happy that we managed to organise the festival, as many artists and spectators were looking forward to feel the atmosphere of concerts again, while still feeling safe. Since the festival was on a smaller scale this year, it also reminded us of our beginnings.
TGE: Could you give us some examples of programs or actions you have recently led or implemented? Where are they taking in place (in France, abroad)?
Mrs. Roz: For several years, the festival has developed actions towards the young audience and young talents. In 2021, we are supporting three main projects towards the youth, under the theme “Jouez la partition des talents de demain” (Play the tune of tomorrow’s talents).
The first is called “Lycéens au festival” (High schoolers at the festival), we welcome teachers and high school students from the region to stay at the festival, to attend the concert, to meet the artists, to take part in workshops and learn about the jobs that make the festival a reality.
Another project is dedicated towards the schoolchildren of La Roque d’Anthéron and the surrounding villages, to present them an educational show, to make them discover the Park of the Château de Florans and to attend a concert.
To develop young talents, we have created a project called “Les Ensembles en Résidence”. We welcome students at the end of their studies at the music conservatory of Paris and Lyon, as they are about to become professional musicians. They stay at the festival for a dozen of days, attend classes with experts and artists that play during the Festival and give their own free concerts.
TGE: Is cross-border giving an important part of your fundraising strategy? If yes, which countries do you target?
Mrs. Roz: We are at the beginning of our cross-border fundraising journey. Like many other cultural organisations, we received fewer and fewer subsidies from the State and other institutions, and we started to look for other means to raise funds. In 2017, we started a first crowdfunding campaign, and for our new campaign in 2021, we decided to partner with the iRaiser platform, to help finance the projects that I mentioned. We realised that about 6% of our audience came from other countries: from Belgium, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, Spain, Switzerland and the UK, and that there was potential to receive donations from abroad.
TGE: Why did you decide to join the TGE Network?
Mrs. Roz: Since a part of our audience comes from abroad, we wanted to develop our international fundraising capabilities. After making some research, we discovered the TGE Network and decided to join.
TGE: What do you think about the concept of a TGE Online Giving Platform? How does it fit with your fundraising efforts?
Mrs. Roz: We found it convenient since we already worked with the iRaiser platform, which TGE also uses. It’s very interesting that it can be coupled with our own platform. This way, our international audience has access to our content and can easily find the link to make a donation through TGE.
TGE: What are the next steps for the festival? Your projects for the future?
Mrs. Roz: We hope to organise the 2021 edition of the festival in the same conditions as last year, and to maintain our projects towards the youth. International generosity will certainly give us a boost to finance these projects.
To learn more about Le Festival International de Piano de La Roque d’Anthéron
Want to make a donation? Do it here : https://donate.transnationalgiving.eu/landing/festivaldepiano?lang=en_EN
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