Come and thrill to music in the Heart of Brittany during the largest independent music festival in France : Les Vieilles Charrues. Over four days, five different stages and in front of over 230,000 spectators, 90 or so nationally and internationally renowned artists follow on one after the other to give the public the greatest show in the centre of Brittany !
And to think that it all started with a small village fête organised by a group of friends as a mickey take of the Vieux Gréments, the Old Ships in Brest.
Nowadays, the festival just keeps growing and in 2017 reached a record attendance level. Nearly 280,000 festival-goers set foot on the meadow at Kéramphuilh in Carhaix. Shere scale, eclectic in its musical choices and a friendly atmosphere are all part of the hallmark of the event. In fact, no less than four stages bearing the names of famous Breton writers welcome the artists: Glenmor, Kerouac, Grall and Gwernig. This set-up means that all types of music are played side by side: pop-rock, hard-rock, French and international popular music, World Music, Breton music, rap and techno.
The very first concerts, which were held in the town centre, Les Vieilles Charrues welcomed legends like James Brown and Joan Baez and great names in French music like Claude Nougaro and Charles Aznavour. When the festival moved to Kérampuilh huge stages were erected enabling the festival to sign acts like Muse, Noir Désir, Phoenix, Johnny Hallyday and also Rammstein. Stromae set the festival alight in 2014 with a fantastic inter-generational concert. Talking of myths, we mustn't leave out Sting or, the Boss, Bruce Springsteen, who did his only gig in France at the festival in 2009.
Over the past few years, tickets have sold even before the public knows who the headliners are, which only goes to prove that the festival has now become so important that many people wouldn't miss it for the world! Four days of fun and partying in a friendly atmosphere where all generations come together.
What's the secret of the festival and the friendly atmosphere about which we hear so much talk;and which has come to be the hallmark of Les Vieilles Charrues ? You don't have to look too far to find out. The chemistry works because of the 5,500 volunteers who are the heart and soul of the festival and its cornerstone since it was first created. At the entrance, in the restaurants, at the bars, the volunteers are there to welcome in the way that only they know how so that you really have a good time at the festival. Always ready to chat and share with festival-goers, the volunteers are what help make the festival enjoyable for the public and will make you enjoy the festival all the more, making you want to come back the following year.