The first ever edition of the dance concept created by Les Ballets de Monte-Carlo, F(ê)aites de la Danse, took place this weekend in the glorious location of the Casino Square. This event adds itself to Monaco’s packed summer line-up; a fun-filled evening that brings the spirit of dance and community to the Principality. The Place du Casino and Salle Garnier turned into a proper dance floor where any members of the public interested in dancing and enjoying a buzzing atmosphere, were welcomed with open arms.
On Saturday 1st of July the heart of the Principality attracted individuals from all neighbouring areas and far beyond, intrigued by this original event. It certainly was an unusual sight to see the Casino Square turned into a sort of “village party”, with a variety of music playing and an enthusiastic crowd singing and dancing. This atmosphere gave a community feel to the event; all visitors reunited under the premise of having fun and making the most of the entertainment.The setting made it really unique; a glorious summer evening, with the palm trees swaying and the deep blue sea in the background, as well as Monaco’s glorious hallmark buildings encircling the celebrations – Monaco was at its best. The scene was incredible, and that alone made the event a success.
There was never a dull moment! From 6 pm onwards, different dance groups and entertainers performed one after another. Every group was highly professional and extremely talented, the effort everyone put into making this event great was clear to see. A concert by Antonio Castrignanò and his orchestra started off the festivities, the world-renowned group really got the crowd going with their traditional Tarantella folk style music. Performers from the ‘Horizons Croisés’ group interacted with the audience; doing tricks and jumps on their bouncy stilts, even jumping over people in the crowd! The ‘Yamakasi PK Artists’ took over the stage and buildings to showcase the breath-taking art form of ‘street jump’ that’s taking the world by storm. The hip-hop group ‘Pokemon Crew’ gave the public a real show, creating an intense and impressive dance battle that left everyone wanting more. Perhaps the most captivating performance was Marion Crampe’s pole dancing demonstration; she is one of the best in the field, having won trophies all over the world, and it was clear to see why. The crowd was left wide-eyed at the skill and strength she seemed to effortlessly show.
The role of dancers is to entertain their public, however what made this event unique was that all visitors were encouraged to take part and dive into the universe of dance. This was Jean-Christophe Maillot’s, Choreography Director of the Monte-Carlo Ballets, aim when creating such an event. “For over 30 years, members of the Ballets de Monte-Carlo travel the whole world to perform on some of the most prestigious stages”, explained Maillot. “The most magical moment for us is when the audience stands up and applauds us, but we also feel a form of frustration as there’s a barrier between the performers and the public”. This is the thought behind ‘F(ê)aites de la Danse’: to remove the invisible wall and dance with everyone no matter the level or age.
So amidst all the professional performances, members of the public were welcomed to partake in pole dancing, belly dancing, jazz, ballroom and even flamenco classes spread across different buildings overlooking the Square. Each dance workshop was complete with certified instructors from some of the top dance studios in the region, taught by masters in each field. It was a real treat for people to receive first-hand tips and tricks from some of the best dancers the world has to offer – and all for free!
Those willing to accept the challenge signed up for the Dance Marathon, where pre-selected coupled danced from 6 pm to the early hours of the morning to different music styles, competing against one another for endurance and technique, watched over by a panel of judges. Visitors were also able to take part in a giant Flash Mob alongside dancers from the Ballets de Monte-Carlo, as a simple choreography was put online days before the event for anyone to learn.
Once the sun set on the Square, the buildings became even more beautiful, lit up for the event, and the fun continued for those still dancing the night away. At 2 am two dance floors opened up; the first one amazingly located in the Opera Room of the Salle Garnier where dancers enjoyed DJ Greg Boust’s set. The second one and perhaps the more unique of the two was a silent disco that took over the whole Square! The public was able to enjoy their evening without worrying restraints with the noise, as 1000 headphones were available for them to enjoy the music and atmosphere as long as they wanted. HelloMonaco chatted with a few dancers on the night to find out their thoughts on the concept: Pauline from Monaco commented on the uniqueness of the event, “I’ve lived in Monaco my whole life and I’ve never seen anything quite like this! It really is super, I hope it’ll be back next year”. Lucia from Milan gave her thoughts on the silent disco, “I don’t think it’ll become the future of clubbing, but I do think it’s such a fun way to be able to enjoy any location without a time or noise limit!”.
There is no doubt that this unique event will be welcomed back to Monaco next year, so make sure to join in on the dancing next time!