Festival International de Louisiane is truly a community event drawing together approximately 1,500 volunteers from all segments of the community to work together to celebrate both our diversity and the common human experience that binds us together. Through the arts presented and the joint efforts to produce it, the festival contributes to the spirit of community that is so unique to the Acadiana region.
The annual 5-day festival is held during the last full week of April. Downtown Lafayette, Louisiana, is transformed into an entertainment complex featuring six music stages, food court areas, street musicians and animators, arts and crafts boutiques, art galleries, beverage stands, cultural workshops, international cooking demonstrations and a world music store.
All programming for the festival is designed to celebrate cultural expression in a variety of forms and to encourage understanding and appreciation for different cultures. Festival International events are free to the public and designed to encourage family participation from all sectors of the community.
This year’s musical lineup at Festival hopes to be another great gumbo of local, national and international sounds. A few highlights for the weekend include local boy Marc Broussard who headlines Thursday night on the Popeye’s Scene stage.
Another highly anticipated act is the Cambodian surf band Dengue Fever. They are cranking things up in 2009 promoting their documentary "Sleepwalking Through The Mekong"
Other acts that some may be familar with include: Zachary Richard, Groupo Fantasma,Bonearama just to name a few. One bands of interest that you may not be familar with: Alpha Yaya Diallo from Guinea. Diallo is a self-taught musician who combines electric and acoustic guitar with indigenous percussion instruments that gives him a soulful and unique sound.
Another highly anticipated act this weekend is Chica Libre . A psychedelic Latin group from France and the U.S. were inspired by the 70’s music craze in the Peruvian Amazon. Chica Libre offer a unique blend of surf guitars, moog synths and Latin rhythms. 2009 Grammy nominees LocosporJuana will also be a crowd pleaser for their two Festival shows.
Festival International is a nice breathe of fresh air to crank up the Spring festival season. It is not as large as Jazz Fest in New Orleans and offers a opportunity to be turned on to a lot of new music you might not see without international travel or doing lots of research. Festival is best with an ice cold Louisiana beverage, a dozen or two oysters and some good dancing shoes.
Complete Festival International Lineup.
THURSDAY, APRIL 23
Marc Broussard w/ surprise guest performances (Louisiana), Locos por Juana (Colombia/Venezuela), Ilê Ayê (Brazil), Tarace Boulba (France), Chicha Libre (Peru/France/US), Chic Gamine (Manitoba), Amameresso Agafomma (Ghana), Feufollet w/ The Quebe Sisters Band (Louisiana/Texas)
FRIDAY, APRIL 24
Grupo Fantasma (US), Cherish the Ladies (Ireland), Dobet Gnahore (Ivory Coast), Alpha Ya Ya Diallo (Guinea), Bonerama (Louisiana), Tarace Boulba (France), Ilê Ayê (Brazil), Amameresso Agafomma (Ghana), Quebe Sisters Band (Texas), Zulu Connection (Louisiana), Sherman Robertson (Louisiana), Corey Ledet (Louisiana), Divine Jones (Louisiana), Cedric Watson w/ Lil’ Buck Senegal (Louisiana)
SATURDAY, APRIL 25
Rachid Taha (Algeria), Locos por Juana (Colombia/Venezuela), Orange Blossom (France), Zachary Richard (Louisiana), Grupo Fantasma (Texas), Dengue Fever (Cambodia/US), Malajube (Québec), Dobet Gnahore (Ivory Coast), Cherish the Ladies (Ireland), Tarace Boulba (France), Crocodile Gumboot Dancers of South Africa (S. Africa), Zulu Connection (Louisiana), David Egan & 20 Years of Trouble (Louisiana), Chicha Libre (Peru/France/US), Les Chevres a Pul (Belgium), Rupa and the April Fishes (India/France/US), Firecracker Jazz Band (US), Bombes 2 Bal (France), Bertrand Laurence (France), Coatimundi (France), Balfa Toujours (Louisiana), Cedric Watson & Bijou Creole (Louisiana), Chic Gamine (Manitoba), Genticorum (Québec), TBC Brass Band (Louisiana), Quebe Sisters Band (Texas), Red Stick Ramblers w/ Firecracker Jazz Band (Louisiana/US), Louisiana Folk Roots presents: Tribute to Walter Mouton (Louisiana), Louisiana Folk Roots presents: Women in Cajun Music (Louisiana), Louisiana Folk Roots presents: The Louisiana/France Connection w/Bombes 2 Bal (France/Louisiana), Peter Villages (Wyoming), Chosen Gospel Singers (Louisiana)
SUNDAY, APRIL 26
Rootz Underground (Jamaica), Dengue Fever (Cambodia/US), Alpha Ya Ya Diallo (Guinea), Orange Blossom (France), Crocodile Gumboot Dancers of S. Africa (S. Africa), Rupa and the April Fishes (India/France/US), Malajube (Québec), Tarace Boulba (France), Genticorum (Québec), Les Chèvres à Pull (Belgium), Masankha Banda (Malawi), Zulu Connection (Louisiana), Roddie Romero & the Hub City Allstars (Louisiana), Lil Buck Senegal (Louisiana), Racines (Louisaina), Corey Ledet (Louisiana), Horace Trahan & Matt Doucet w/ The Bluerunners (Louisiana), Peter Villages (Wyoming)