Le 14 Juillet
Bastille Day Fête honors NOLA’s ongoing connection to France
You can hardly walk a block in this town without being reminded of our French heritage. From the interestingly-pronounced street names to the fleur-de-lis jewelry on passersby, France influences NOLA’s culture to this day.
Honoring that connection is the annual Bastille Day Fête, New Orleans’ party celebrating the French national holiday that commemorates the 1789 storming of Bastille Prison, a turning point in the French Revolution. Bastille Day Fête will be Friday, July 13 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the New Orleans Museum of Art (NOMA).
One of the event’s sponsors is the French American Chamber of Commerce-Gulf Coast Chapter (FACG-GC). The FACC-GC’s Executive Director, Loretta Krentel Krasnow, expressed the importance of events like this in the city.
“FACC-CG continues to support events related to France such as Bastille Day, on France’s Independence Day, because it helps to promote awareness of our solidarity with each other,” she said. “In addition, it supports the exchange of the chamber's mission to promote trade and investment between the Gulf Coast and France.”
Krentel Krasnow said Louisiana continues to be a major stakeholder for French and American business affairs. According to the French Consulate, in 2014 more than 11,000 jobs were supported by trade with France and France is the third-largest foreign employer in Louisiana. As of January 2016, the consulate reported total exports from Louisiana to France were $2.3 billion and total imports from France to Louisiana were $436.9 million.
Beyond trade, France has an ongoing cultural commitment to Louisiana. Through a partnership with CODOFIL, France has been investing in French-immersion education in Louisiana since 1968, and today there are 30 French-immersion schools in the state educating more than 5,000 students. Between 120,000 and 150,000 Louisiana residents speak French at home. C’est bon, cher!
Throughout our tricentennial year, there have been many opportunities to acknowledge our French connections. Krentel Krasnow sees the Bastille Day Fête as another.
“I've learned that throughout the past 300 years of friendship, there is still love and passion between these two beautiful places,” she said. “I’m looking forward to celebrating with all my French friends and how they make me feel a part of their celebration of freedom.”
Bastille Day Fête will feature live music and dancing, cooking demos, film screenings, a puppet show, a magician and guided tours of NOMA. There will be a pop-up shop by The French Library, a cash bar featuring French wines, and food for purchase by Boucherie, Café Dégas, Café NOMA, Crêpes à la Cart and Frencheez. General admission is $5 and admission is free for NOMA members, teenagers and children age 6 and under.
The French-inspired “Programme de la Soirée” is as follows:
Grande Salle (Great Hall)
6:00–9:00 p.m. – Music by Bon Bon Vivant
7:00 p.m. – Welcome remarks
8:00 p.m. – Performance by Roux La La
Auditorium Stern (Stern Auditorium)
6:00–7:00 p.m. – Café NOMA by Ralph Brennan presents “A Creole Take on Classic French Cuisine” with Chris Montero, Executive Chef and Culinary Curator of Café NOMA and Napoleon House
8:00–9:00 p.m. – Screening of family-friendly French short films presented by the New Orleans Film Society
Rez-de-chaussée (First Floor)
5:00–8:00 p.m. – Art on the Spot à la Française (Elevator lobby)
5:00–9:00 p.m. – The French Library pop-up shop (Elevator lobby)
5:00–9:00 p.m. – Café NOMA open for dinner service
7:00 p.m. – Guided tour of the exhibition Changing Course: Reflections on New Orleans Histories (Meet in the elevator lobby)
7:15 p.m. – Presentation and book signing with Cheryl Wakerhauser, pastry chef and author of Modern French Pastry (Museum Shop)
8:00 p.m. – Guided tour of the exhibition Changing Course: Reflections on New Orleans Histories (Meet in the elevator lobby)
1er Étage (Second Floor)
6:30–7:15 p.m. – “Porta-Puppets on Parade” presented by the Porta-Puppet Players (Contemporary Galleries)
6:30 p.m. – Guided tour of NOMA’s Impressionist collections (Meet in 2nd floor elevator lobby)
7:30 p.m. – Guided tour of NOMA’s modern art collections (Meet in 2nd floor elevator lobby)
À l’Extérieur (Outside)
5:30–9:00 p.m. – Food from Boucherie, Café Dégas, Crêpes à la Cart and Frencheez