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What we liked (and least liked) at the Ronquières Festival

  • Post category:Entertainment
  • Reading time:10 mins read

Ten years ago, the Ronquières Festival set up its stages at the foot of the inclined plane. For the first time this year (better late than never), we decided to treat ourselves to a three-day pass. After a good-natured weekend with friends, a few concerts, and a little rest, we take stock.

Rilès (and others)

The performance of the French rapper alone deserves to be mentioned. We loved his songs when they were randomly played on Spotify, we fell in love with the artist we discovered on stage. Landed running, huge white flag in hand, Rilès announced the color for the rest of his concert. For an hour, he chained the pieces (with choreography on each of them, please), heated his audience, broke a guitar and even managed to cram in a small demonstration of capoeira. A studied and powerful show that definitely convinced us.

Special mention also for Louane, who gathered an impressive crowd on Bâbord on Saturday and did not hesitate to mingle with her for her last piece, and Julien Doré, the eternal showman. For his fourth visit to the festival, the singer provided the show and even gave himself a long ovation from the public who were still chanting his a cappella “oh oh oh” long after the end of the concert.

Long-awaited – and still very impressive on stage – Orelsan meanwhile lost us a bit with his depressed-guaranteed setlist. Chaining “Best day”, “Together”, “Athena” and “Notes for too late” at the end of the evening, it was perhaps not his best idea.

The car parks

As we know, they caused a lot of ink to flow on social networks on the first evening. Many people were stuck – sometimes for several hours – at the exit and blamed the organizers for a certain lack of organization. However, on our side, nothing to report. Parked just a few meters from one of the festival entrances (and promised, it was not a VIP parking lot), we even had the luxury of leaving a sweater and jeans in the trunk of the car to change into during the evening and not suffer the cooler weather. When leaving the premises, no line in sight. And what’s more, they’re free. We’re looking at you, Werchter and your car parks at 15 euros a day.

Payments with the bracelet

We stay in the practical-practical. On this aspect, Ronquières has nothing to envy to the greatest. And would even have a few tricks to teach some of them. No paper tickets lost in the bottom of the pockets, no tickets flying: on the festival site, everything is paid for using the wristband. All you have to do is scan the QR code with the Payconiq app, recharge and pay for your consumption by placing your wrist on the terminals at the bar or in the shops. Magical. The future is now.

Julien Doré on stage at the Ronquières Festival. © PhotoNews

The unbalanced poster

We know that Ronquières is a family festival and there is something for everyone. The problem, in our opinion, is that these tastes were not sufficiently spread across the poster. The Friday evening was aimed more at a young audience. Saturday was dedicated to French-speaking artists, while Sunday offered more rock programming aimed at a more mature audience. So when you have a pass for the three days, and you are, let’s say, not necessarily a fan of French variety, you quickly find yourself living a day that is not musically unforgettable. Admittedly, we could have taken day tickets, you will tell us, but isn’t the pleasure of a festival precisely to vary the pleasures and to discover new artists? We let you choose your side.

A jerky rhythm

There are those who like to sit on the grass with friends and a beer, and then there are those who like to jump from stage to stage and from concert to concert. Too bad, we belong to the second category, and Ronquières is definitely not made for that. The concerts alternate between port and starboard, and so does the crowd. Result, if you do not like an artist, no way to go to the other stage to kill time or discover another: there is no one. Good. Shall we have a drink?

Ten years is something to celebrate…right?

The “RF” celebrated its tenth anniversary this year. But apart from the logo and a festival spread over three days instead of two, this anniversary was not obvious. The poster did not particularly hold its own compared to previous editions. And on Sunday evening, nothing indicated that the event had just celebrated its tenth candle. Not even a small rocket or a few party favors to mark the occasion. As for the installations, we regret a general “unfinished” appearance, with mismatched tents and poorly camouflaged cranes still hanging around behind the stage. But a decade goes by quickly. Can we really expect such a recent festival to offer the same services as the oldest in the country? See you in five, ten years (or before), to appreciate the evolution of the young Ronquières.



A new “historic” edition for the Ronquières Festival, which should start again over 3 days in 2023