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Festival Kiosquorama │ Courtesy of Kiosquorama
Festival Kiosquorama │ Courtesy of Kiosquorama
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What's On in Paris in September 2017

Picture of Paul McQueen
Updated: 14 August 2017
Parisians return to the capital at the end of August after a month on the French Riviera or the Atlantic coast dispirited, like the rest of us, about the return to work and school. But the holiday blues don’t last for long in Paris thanks to the vibrant music, sport, food, and heritage events that the first month of autumn brings.

FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 1 SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 10

MUSIC │ Jazz à La Villette

📅 Thursday, August 31 – Wednesday, September 13

Since it was brought back to life in 2002 under a new name, Jazz à La Villette has been one of the most hotly anticipated music festivals of the autumn, if not the entire year. The event brings talent from around the world, from the great names of the genre to its emerging stars, to the venues of Paris’ trendy northeast. This year, you can enjoy discovery sessions on the cheap (just €10) and introduce the kids to jazz with their very own mini-festival.

Tickets: €36 to €20 for the main program and €10 for the Under the Radar shows.

📍 La Villette, 211 Avenue Jean Jaurès, 75019 Paris, France.

FESTIVAL │ Kiosquorama

📅 Thursday, August 31 – Sunday, October 1

Throughout the month of September, the Kiosquorama eco-citizenship and arts festival takes over bandstands in the parks and gardens of the Paris region. Its free events, which include concerts, workshops, and educational games, are open to everyone and are a great way to get out and enjoy the last warm days of the year. The festival is also a showcase for young artistic talent in the city and its events are the perfect place to discover new names before anyone else.

Tickets: Free.

📍 Gardens and parks across Paris.

MUSIC │ Opera en Plein Air

📅 Thursday, September 7 – Saturday, September 9

The Opera en Plein Air initiative was launched in 2001 with the aim of bringing the art form to a new audience, particularly young people, and its concert series now attracts close to 800,000 spectators. This September in Paris, the actress and film producer Julie Gayet has been invited by the event’s producer Benjamin Patou to direct The Marriage of Figaro by Mozart. The show will run for three nights in the spectacular Cour d’Honneur of the Hôtel National des Invalides.

Tickets: From €42.

📍 Les Invalides, Place des Invalides, 75007 Paris, France.

MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 11 SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 17

DESIGN │ Paris Design Week

📅 Friday, September 8 – Saturday, September 16

Paris Design Week is among the crème de la crème of international design events. It comprises eight glorious days of cutting-edge exhibitions, cocktail receptions, debates, installations, and late-night store and gallery openings. One unmissable feature of the event is the ‘Now! Le Off’ competition for young designers at Les Docks, Cité de la Mode et du Design. Elsewhere, you can pick up ideas for autumn home improvement and décor projects and maybe even a few bargains in the pre-holiday sales.

Tickets: Free.

📍 Venues across Paris.

MUSIC │ Fête de l’Humanité

📅 Friday, September 15 – Sunday, September 17

The Fête de l’Humanité is a music festival unlike any other: a rocking three-day party and a hotbed for humanitarian activism. It was first held in September 1930, though it only attracted 1,000 people back then, and today it draws hundreds of thousands of people to the Parc de la Courneuve near Saint-Denis. As well as huge headline acts, there will be young musical talent of all styles on display and hundreds of stalls offering artistic, literary, gastronomic, and, of course, political discoveries.

Tickets: €35 for a three-day pass.

📍 Parc Georges Valbon, 55 Avenue Waldeck Rochet, 93120 La Courneuve, France.

ARCHITECTURE │ Journée du Patrimoine

📅 Saturday, September 16 – Sunday, September 17

Although European Heritage Days now occur across the continent, the annual event for architecture buffs and the naturally curious began in France in 1984. Across the country, more than 17,000 closed-off monuments will open their doors to the public, or give them more access than is normally allowed, and put on over 25,000 events. In the capital, you can go behind the scenes of the Élysée Palace, President Macron’s new home, and explore the city’s numerous chapels, synagogues, mosques, and temples that you’d usually walk right past.

Tickets: Free.

📍 Buildings across the Paris region.

MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 18 SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 24

FOOD │ Fête de la Gastronomie

📅 Friday, September 22 – Sunday, September 24

It’s no secret that the French take their food and wine seriously but if you were in any doubt about their passion for the national cuisine, just witness the fervor with which they celebrate the Fête de la Gastronomie. This three-day festival attracted more than 2.5 million visitors across France in 2016, with more than 300,000 professionals attending and more than 10,500 events taking place. In Paris, you can learn more about French cooking at tasting sessions, after-work drinks, workshops, dinners, food markets, and live debates.

Tickets: Prices vary depending on the event, though many are free.

📍 Venues across France.

MUSIC │ Techno Parade

📅 Saturday, September 23

The capital’s annual Techno Parade started in the early 1990s as a protest against the French government’s suppression of electronic music. Today, it is the second-largest free outdoor musical event in France after June’s Fête de la Musique but, despite the genre’s popularity, the revellers still tend to strike an oppositional note as they march through the streets of Paris. The exact route is announced closer to the date and the evening usually descends into the city’s basement bars and clubs for a raging all-nighter.

Tickets: Free.

📍 The route through the streets of Paris has yet be announced on the event website.

SPORTS │ Paris-Versailles: La Grande Classique

📅 Sunday, September 24

The legendary Paris-Versailles road race sees 25,000 brave (or crazy) runners take on the changeable September weather and the 16 kilometers between the Eiffel Tower and the Château de Versailles. Registration is now complete for the 40th edition but you can still do your bit by cheering on the participants from the roadside as they make their way along the course. There are also normally live bands playing along the route to spur on any lagging athletes, the 2016 locations of which can be found here.

Tickets: Free.

📍 Quai de Grenelle, 75015 Paris, France – full course map here.

MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 25 SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 30

SPORTS │ Paris Legends Championship

📅 Thursday, September 28 – Saturday, September 30

The Paris Legends Championship will see 54 of the most respected names from the world of golf, such as John Daly, Ian Woosnam, Sam Torrance, and Jean van de Velde, compete in three rounds on the stunning ‘L’Albatross’ course on the outskirts of Paris. The course, also known as Le National Golf, will next year host the Ryder Cup 2018. This is a great opportunity to see famous names playing a world-class course for free.

Tickets: Free.

📍 Le Golf National, 2 Avenue Golf, 78280 Guyancourt, France. +33 1 30 43 36 00

LITERATURE │ René Goscinny: Au-delà du rire

📅 Wednesday, September 27 – Sunday, March 4

This November will mark the 40th anniversary of the death of René Goscinny, the comic genius who wrote the screenplays for Astérix et Obélix, Lucky Luke, Iznogoud, and Petit Nicolas. To celebrate his legacy, the Musée d’Art et d’Histoire du Judaïsme will be putting on a temporary exhibition subtitled ‘Beyond the Laughter’. This will be the first retrospective of Goscinny’s oeuvre and it will bring together more than 200 items including previously unpublished material. Between October and March, the Cinémathèque de Paris will also be holding a series of events in his honour.

Tickets: €8 for the exhibition and €9 for the museum’s permanent collection.

📍 Musée d’art et d’histoire du Judaïsme, Hôtel de Saint-Aignan, 71 Rue du Temple, 75003 Paris, France. +33 1 53 01 86 53

CULTURE │ Festival d’Automne

📅 Tuesday, September 12 – Friday, January 5

The Festival d’Automne is almost singularly responsible for dragging many culturally minded Parisians through the long, dark, wet nights of autumn. Between mid-September and early-January, it stages dozens of top-quality events in the fields of dance, cinema, visual arts, and theater (and often two or more in combination). These performances are staged in 47 venues in Paris and its suburbs, bringing the healing power of culture to as large and broad an audience as possible.

Tickets: Prices vary depending on the performance and number of bookings made.

📍 Venues across the Paris region.