With good weather, crowded terraces, countless spectators and artists in love with Quebec City, the Festival d’été de Québec (FEQ) has got off to a flying start for its return after a two-year absence.

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“Extraordinary results, the weather, the people and the fact that the stages are all in the city centre […] It’s crazy. We are very happy,” says Émile Lebel, Manager of the Ozone Grande Allée.

  • Listen to Alexandre Moranville’s interview with Pierre-Paul Biron, journalist at the Journal de Montréal, on QUB radio:

Jean-Frédéric Laberge, who as co-owner of Dagobert has nevertheless been a regular guest at major events for many years, is impressed by the monster departure of the FEQ.

“After the shows there are 50-60,000 people on the street, it’s fun, it’s extremely good. We rejected 2500 people yesterday [samedi]. »

Across the street, Faite à l’os restaurant co-owner Emmanuel Côté admits traffic has exceeded his expectations for the first five days.

“The world is here, the weather is there, there is a great line-up, it’s really great for the moment,” he sums up and wonders about the weather forecast for the next few days.

Festival visitors use the pedestrian zones.

Photo agency QMI, René Leclerc

Festival visitors use the pedestrian zones.

Busy Saint-Jean

Even though the Festival d’été de Québec hasn’t put on a show on the Place d’Youville for the rare time since 1988, the pedestrian street Rue Saint-Jean has been packed since last Wednesday.

Before the shows the festival-goers are very numerous and after that the pubs and restaurant-bars fill up until they close.

Olivier Ménard, owner of Cohen, a bar he says is secretly on Saint-Jean.

Photo Louis Deschenes

Olivier Ménard, owner of Cohen, a bar he says is secretly on Saint-Jean.

Olivier Ménard, partner at Shaker restaurant and owner of the speakeasy-style bar Le Cohen, admits that this year traders were wondering if the already busy famous Rue Saint-Jean would be there during the festival.

“We didn’t know if it was going to go down, but there are a lot of people. Saturday after the show it was packed. We have a private bar upstairs [Le Cohen] and the shaker at the bottom. We couldn’t get anyone in. »

sound problem

Despite a great start, some negative points surfaced. Several readers have informed us that the sound quality left a lot to be desired on the grandstand side since the beginning of the festival.

The problem would have been particularly noticeable during Luke Combs’ concert on Friday night.

Asked about it on Saturday, the FEQ’s chief programmer, Louis Bellavance, said he hadn’t heard of it but suggested that with the changes being made to the Plains site, particularly the new stage, adjustments might be needed.

“There might be a sound hole in that corner. I will conduct an investigation. »

Another downside: Artists performing on the Plains of Abraham have criticized the lack of attendance and late arrivals of festival-goers from the gold frontstage area.

A situation that has irritated many for many years.

– With the participation of Cédric Bélanger

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