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Dans les Jardins de William Christie

About the festival

Every summer since 2012, Les Arts Florissants and the Département de la Vendée have joined forces to offer a unique festival event, combining the pleasure of baroque music and the beauty of the gardens. 

Open-air or candlelight concerts, operas, musical walks in the gardens, workshops, meetings... numerous events punctuate each day, from morning to night, to offer the public a unique experience, in a relaxed atmosphere with the artists of Les Arts Florissants. 

Where is it?

Vendée — Pays de la Loire is a region close to the heart of William Christie and central to the Fondation Les Arts Florissants — William Christie. For more than 30 years in the Vendéen village of Thiré, the conductor has pursued a project of passion, combining gardens, music and heritage within an international center for the arts designed around an exceptional garden and facilities for hosting artists-in-residence.

During the Festival, the William Christie Gardens become the idyllic setting for the festivities, which extend more and more each year to the different areas of the Quartier des Artistes, the international artistic and cultural center created by the Fondation Les Arts Florissants - William Christie in the heart of Thiré.

Venues

In 1985, William Christie fell in love with an estate in Thiré, in the Vendée, where he set about creating a garden from scratch. Since then, it is not a single garden, but a succession of spaces as remarkable as eclectic that he has imagined over the years, in a process of permanent creation and inspired by the art of gardens as it knew its apogee in France and Italy in the 17th and 18th centuries. 

Today recognized as a "Remarkable Garden" and registered in the Inventory of Historical Monuments, this exceptional place of 12 hectares serves as an idyllic setting for the Festival Dans les Jardins de William Christie. During the day, musical walks allow you to explore different areas of the Gardens: cloister, main courtyard, Wall of the Cyclops... before giving way to the evening concerts, on the spectacular stage of the Reflecting Pool or in the meditative atmosphere of the village church.  

Why visit the festival?

The Festival Dans les Jardins de William Christie displays a unique experience mixing the beauties of nature in the unique setting of William Christie’s Gardens, and the pleasures of baroque music performed by the world-famous artists of Les Arts Florissants.

How to get there?

By train

The nearest train stations to Thiré:
Luçon station (20 km from Thiré);
La Roche-sur-Yon station (40 km from Thiré);
Nantes TGV station (100 km from Thiré).

We also recommend taking the TGV from Paris to Niort, from where it is possible to take a bus to Fontenay le Comte (20km from Thiré).

By car

Thiré is:
40 km away from La Roche-sur-Yon
55 km from La Rochelle
100 km away from Nantes
450 km away from Paris

By plane

Via Nantes Atlantique airport (100 km from Thiré) or La Rochelle airport (55 km from Thiré):
from Paris: daily flights from Paris Charles de Gaulle and Paris Orly;
from London: daily flights from London Gatwick and London City Airport.

© Julien Gazeau
© Julien Gazeau
Local accommodation

Accommodation is an important aspect of your stay in Thiré, to make the most of your festival experience. You will find many bed and breakfasts, charming hotels and campsites in the vicinity of the village.

Dress code

No specific dress code is required. However, as the Festival takes place at the end of August, we invite you to bring light clothes for the day and something to cover up in the evening, especially for the open-air concerts on the Reflecting Pool!

Food & drink

During the Festival Dans les Jardins de William Christie, several options exist in Thiré to allow you to eat or have a break over a coffee. 

The Garden Café is located in the center of the village and in the "Quartier des Artistes", 400m from the Gardens. It offers light meals as well as hot and cold drinks. 

You can also eat in the Gardens between two concerts, at the Pépinière Café-boutique. Finally, it is also possible to picnic at the camping of Thiré, located outside the Gardens at the public entrance.