August 26, 2021

L’Art en soi Festival — From September 16 to 26, Place des Arts is presenting a series of free activities to get Montrealers dancing on its Esplanade!

Montreal, August 26, 2021 — For the third year in a row, Place des Arts is transforming its outdoor Esplanade into a huge open-air dancefloor for its L’Art en soi Festival, which runs from September 16 to 26. Dance fans and music lovers are invited to come move and sway to the rhythms of music from around the world—with the support and guidance of seasoned professionals—at this big free event. Bollywood, Charleston, house, cumbia, swing, and traditional Haitian dance—participants will learn all there is to know about these various styles! The L’Art en soi Festival’s eight days of fun will offer something for everyone, with six evenings of dancing from Thursdays to Saturdays, hosted by Philippe Fehmiu, and two big family celebrations on Sundays, when the Esplanade will be transformed into a joyful play area for youngsters.


The spokespersons for the event, contemporary dancers Janie & Marcio—the memorable duo that won the second season of the televised dance competition Révolution—are inviting Montrealers to a series of free activities that will get them dancing under the stars at Place des Arts, promising to create magical moments with family and friends.


“We are inviting people of all ages to come join us on the Esplanade at Place des Arts for a festive, unifying, one-of-a-kind moment. Whether you’re solo, a couple, or a family—dance skills are not required… curiosity and a love of music are all you need! With its L’Art en soi Festival, Place des Arts is presenting a series of evenings that will introduce you to various dance styles, in a friendly atmosphere in which you will get to experience the richness of the various communities that make Montreal so dynamic. Also, Sundays will be dedicated to families, with a variety of special activities for the younger crowd. We hope to see a great many of you at the event!”

- Janie & Marcio, spokespersons of the L’Art en soi Festival



A peek at the six evenings of dance…


Each dance evening will begin at 7 pm with a friendly introductory workshop led by professional dancers who will teach participants the basic steps of each of the six styles in the spotlight. Newly acquired skills can then be put into practice during the event following the workshop at 8 pm, featuring musicians performing live on-site!


Bollywood Evening
Thursday, September
16 / 7 pm to 10 pm

In Bollywood, all that counts is the joy of getting together and moving! This cheerful and dynamic dance style—with its rhythmic music and movements going from toes to fingertips—promises to put a smile on your face, even if you’ve never danced before! Choreographer Roger Sinha and two dancers will teach you the moves, to the sound of the tablas (Indian percussion) played by musicians Ravi Dwivedi-Leng and Kingsley Gordon, adding some spice to this lively evening of dance!


Cumbia Evening
Friday, September 17 / 7 pm to 10 pm

The public is invited to spend an evening with the Ballet Raices de Colombia, showcasing one of the world’s richest folklore traditions, a blend of pre-Columbian, Spanish, and African cultures. You’ll dance to the rhythms of Bumaranga, a group whose music offers a fusion of traditional Colombian percussion and flutes with a modern, electric touch. A not-to-be-missed musical excursion!


Swing Evening
Saturday, September 18 / 7 pm to 10 pm

The dancers from Swing ConneXion will present a highly energetic evening of dance—for solo participants, couples, or your whole family bubble! Developing out of a blend of traditional African and European rhythms, swing emerged with the appearance of the big bands. Lighting up the dancefloor with their vintage and festive sounds will be the group Les Royal Pickles.


Traditional Haitian Dance Evening
Thursday, September 23 / 7 pm to 10 pm

Next, the spotlight shines on this highly energetic, thrillingly rhythmic dance style—a true delight for the senses! This evening is a must for anyone who loves to move, dance, and vibrate—which you’ll get to do under the guidance of dancer Cindy Belotte, accompanied by the members of the Mapou Ginen troupe, and carried along by the sounds of the six musicians and two singers of Rara Soley.


Charleston Evening
Friday, September 24 / 7 pm to 10 pm

Participants are invited to come dance the Charleston with well-known dancer and choreographer Chantal Dauphinais and her dancers. The irresistible rhythms of the Early Jazz Band will set the tone, recreating the incomparable atmosphere of the Roaring Twenties!


House Evening
Saturday, September 25 / 7 pm to 10 pm

Contagiously energetic dancer DJungle will guide participants through a few simple combinations of house-style dancing… while the musicians of the group Fantasy 303 make sure to create an electrifying atmosphere for participants, featuring classic sounds that stretch from the early days of house in Chicago and the more experimental ambiance of acid house, to “world music,” funk, and tribal house.


…and the Family Days…


The Playground
Sunday, September 19 / 10 am to 1 pm

Hosted by characters Gaspart and Dahlia, this family day is focused on fun and dancing, in a lively and exciting playground atmosphere! Workshops for the whole family will get everyone to explore hidden talents—theatrical hopscotch with Clémence Dumas-Côté (for the very young), urban dance with DJungle, hula hoop with Laura Fée Langlois, visual arts with Tina Carlisi, and skip rope with Eddie Bonvard and Double Corde Montréal. Participants can then share what they’ve learned in a unifying group performance, as part of a cypher-style dance circle!


The Enchanted Forest
Sunday, September 26 /
10 am to 1 pm

The Esplanade is being transformed into a music-filled forest clearing on this family day for young and old alike, hosted by our fun characters Gaspart and Dahlia. The spotlight will be on singing and expression in an outdoor opera atmosphere! Various workshops—prop making (for the very young) and singing with soprano Frédérique Drolet and baritone Pierre Rancourt—will let participants discover their hidden talents. Children and parents, budding singers, and designers—everyone is invited to take part in the ZoOpéra performance, an original work created by Opéra à la Carte, which will transport families to a heart of a magical forest.



All L’Art en soi Festival activities are free of charge.

Space is limited and participants must reserve their spots here:



  • Events will be held in compliance with current public health directives.
  • Participants’ health and safety remain a priority for Place des Arts.
  • Participants of the Festival L'Art en soi (aged 13 years and older) are required to have a vaccine passport.This passport must be presented at the entrance of the site and be accompanied by photo ID



The L’Art en soi Festival is a key part of Place des Arts‘ L’Art en soi program, which, throughout the year, features cultural and educational activities to awaken participants’ creativity and raise awareness of the arts, of others, and of oneself. The program targets participants of all ages and backgrounds: children and families; high school students; young people and adults with physical limitations, mental health issues, or experiencing social exclusion; and members of various communities. L’Art en soi also provides support for artists to foster the creation and performance of new works. More information on the program, click here.


The festival is made possible thanks to:




Source: Marie-Claude Lépine, Place des Arts

Press Relations: Roy & Turner Communications

Marie-Christine Raymond, | 438-777-1881
Isabelle Longtin, | 514-266-3295

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