Surprising, Innovating, Pushing the Envelope…

Published on September 07, 2018

Rouyn-Noranda, September 4, 2018 – Always surprising, innovating, pushing the envelope: The FME has proved once again that only in Rouyn-Noranda is it possible to bring together Karkwatson and Pierre Lapointe at an exclusive concert in a human, warm, almost familial environment. An inspiration to countless festivals in Quebec and around the world, it must be said that the FME remains a benchmark.

True to its reputation as a talent scout, the FME maintains a fine balance between sensations like Hubert Lenoir and Loud, who attracted close to 4500 festivalgoers on 7th Street, and up-and-coming artists with brand new projects, such as Ingrid St-Pierre, Alexandra Stréliski, Choses Sauvages, and Penny Diving. In addition to its devoted fan base, this year the Festival attracted some 130 industry professionals from Quebec, the rest of Canada, Europe, and South America, as well as 140 national and international journalists.

Between scheduled concerts, fans were hungry for news of the next surprise show, while also enjoying the Festival’s other activities such as the VR Garden, which offered a dose of the surreal, an immersive and polysensory experience. This multidisciplinary mix is central to the FME, giving the unique feeling of being plunged into a parallel universe for four days.

This promise of complete disassociation from the rest of the world continues to attract attention, year after year. One proof of this phenomenon is the ten influencers who dared to traverse the La Vérendrye Wildlife Reserve to capture the “FME vibe” for their millions of followers.

Magic Moments: The FME in the Heart of Natural Abitibi

On Saturday, despite heavy rain, 120 people hopped into buses, destination unknown, arriving finally at the foot of Mount Kanasuta for a blockbuster concert by Galaxie, hosted by Québecor. And on Sunday, 350 hiked to a lake in the Kekeko Hills to attend an authentic canoe-concert by Fred Fortin, a co-presentation with Beside Magazine. These unusual side-trips allowed festivalgoers to fully enjoy one of Rouyn-Noranda’s greatest strengths, its proximity to nature. Moments of pure magic!

Finally, tallying up all the official events along with the surprise concerts, there were 83 shows at 32 different venues throughout Rouyn-Noranda for a total attendance of over 35,000. More than 65 artists appeared on the various Festival stages. Another smashing success! We’ll see you next time—at the next edition of the FME, which takes place from August 29 to September 1, 2019. À la prochaine!