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Weekend Activities

The year of gastronomy finally comes to an end.  Marseille’s Vieux Port will be the place to be for the ‘Grand Spectacle de Cloture’  with what sounds like an impressive fireworks display: starting at 22:30, Friday 13th, fireworks will be shooting into the skies from the port, the Digue du Large, Fort Saint-Nicolas and Notre Dame de la Garde.  Recommended spot to watch is the quai du Port (near the Mairie).  Beforehand, there will be music and free tastings in the Canebiere.  If you are planning to go, do look at details of the extensive travel restrictions which include tunnels autoroute, parking and metro closureshttps://www.myprovence.fr/article/mpg2019-un-feu-d-artifice-epoustouflant-le-13-decembre (more…)

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If you haven’t visited the Fontaine-de-Vaucluse, now is the time to bundle the kids in the car and take a trip over there as its famous spring is about to attain its highest level for 25 years.  The water, which was very low over the summer, is now pouring over the rocky ledge as it forms the river Sorgue. (more…)

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There was still smoke coming out of Les Deux Garcons yesterday morning, a good 4 hours after the fire-fighters arrived to tackle the blaze.

Behind police cordons, locals stood, looking on appalled at the obvious damage to both the ground floor brasserie and the reception rooms on the first floor. And we now learn that bedrooms at the adjoining hotel de Gantes, empty at the time, were damaged by smoke too. (more…)

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…seasonal fun ahead at the 5-star Hotel Piggonet in  Aix.  The patinoire will be open Dec 4th – Jan 19 and after a session on the ice, skaters can indulge in hot chocolate, vin chaud and gaufres gourmandes.

Cost: 15 € for over 15s, 10€ 6-14.  Times: https://www.aixenprovencetourism.com/fr/fiche/35065/

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…with 68 events featuring Corsican, Armenian, Gospel and Cossack choirs.  Most are in Marseille, but there are dates for locations around the Bouches-du-Rhone, with each choir performing once in Aix. (more…)

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The latest in the series of London productions to be transmitted in Aix takes place Sunday 1st December at the town’s 5-star Hotel Renaissance. 

The transmissions are organised by local theatre-lover Karen Wildau who writes:

A play by Arthur Miller barely needs an introduction.  This play, performed at the Old Vic and brought to us by the NTL stars Sally Field (Steel Magnolias) and  Bill Pullman (Independence Day).
It is America, 1947. Despite hard choices and even harder knocks, Joe and Kate Keller are a success story. They have built a home, raised two sons and established a thriving business.
But nothing lasts forever and their contented lives, already shadowed by the loss of their eldest boy to war, are about to shatter. With the return of a figure from the past, long buried truths are forced to the surface and the price of their American dream is laid bare.
Here’s  some of what The Guardian says in its review:

At a time of flux and fakery when lies masquerade as truth, we find reassurance in Miller’s moral rigour.. The play focuses on Joe Keller, a thriving businessman who escaped a wartime charge of issuing defective cylinder heads to combat planes by letting his partner take the rap. Exonerated but hardly guilt-free, Joe is suddenly confronted by the consequences of his actions. His wife, Kate, is obstinately convinced that their son, Larry, missing in action, is still alive. And when their other son, Chris, decides to marry Larry’s fiancee, Joe and Kate realise that the pretences by which they have lived are destined to be exposed.

Miller’s morality is accompanied by psychological insights that Herrin’s production largely captures. Pullman, with his granite profile and spiky hair, lacks the backslapping bonhomie that David Suchet brought to Joe in the last West End revival, but he is excellent at conveying the character’s strenuous self-justification.

Field, meanwhile, is superb as Kate. She combines an innate warmth with a nervy anxiety suggested by the way she encases herself in her cardigan as if it were a protective shield. It has been argued that Kate is the “villain” of the piece in that she puts the sanctity of the home before ethics, but Field endows the character with an essential myopic innocence.


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What a tonic on such a rainy day to read a little about the treat in store for us this summer, at Aix’s outstanding Hotel Caumont Centre d’Art.  They will be featuring the work of (more…)

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