La Fête de Marquette is a Madison festival that shines because of the little things, according to its organizers.
There’s Paint it Magnifique, an art competition where Fête-goers can watch local painters decorate whitewashed tabletops. There's the Family Fete, the two acres of park strewn with ball pits, climbing walls and bouncy houses for children. There’s the Willy Street Co-op’s annual membership party on Thursday, plus the Acoustic Cafe Brunch on Sunday, featuring acoustic music with French fare provided by Bunky’s Cafe.
“They’re examples of all the small parts that come together and make (the Fête) so big, and so universally appealing,” said Beatrice Hadidian of the Wil-Mar Neighborhood Center, the near east-side community hub that the Fête fundraises for.
La Fête de Marquette, which takes place this Thursday through Sunday in McPike Park, also draws crowds for its music. The fest is a perennial offering of Francophone, Creole and Louisianan music, with a hearty serving of electronic, funk and other flavors of music from around the globe to boot. This year’s lineup features just over 30 artists performing on two different stages, and inside the “Bistro tent.”
“It’s always a pleasure, and a little nerve-wracking, wondering what people will think of it,” said Hadidian of the line-up.
That said, Hadidian said she's confident that this year’s is the best lineup in the festival’s 12-year history.
Here are six artists on the lineup that may be worth checking out. Note: The Sun Stage is adjacent to Ingersoll Street, and the Moon Stage is adjacent to Brearly Street.
Ginkgoa is a pop ensemble so nice, the Fête booked them twice. The duo is a routine performer at the festival, and this year it has performances slated for both Saturday and Sunday. The collaboration between Nicolle Rochelle, a singer from New York, and Antoine Chatenet, a producer from Paris, takes the spirit and sound of old-school swing and updates it with a 21st Century pop and hip-hop sensibility.
Ginkgoa performs at the Sun Stage on Saturday at 4:15 p.m., and on the Moon Stage on Sunday at 7:30 p.m.