One of Monaco’s most exciting cultural events – Le festival Printemps des Arts de Monte-Carlo – celebrates its 30th anniversary this year.

Opening on March 14th, this month-long festival presents a superb array of cultural events from the world of art, music, theatre and dance – featuring an impressive line-up of international artists, from the Principality and from countries around the globe.

In 1970, the Festival International des Arts de Monte-Carlo was created, under the Presidency of Princess Grace. It was her wish, and that of Prince Rainier III, that the festival should embrace as much diversity as possible.

Poster for Printemps des Arts de Monte-Carlo 2014

In December 1982, following the death of Princess Grace, Princess Caroline (now HRH the Princess of Hanover) was named president of the organising committee of the newly-formed Le festival Printemps des Arts de Monte-Carlo, which Her Royal Highness insisted should reflect a continuation of the spirit of diversity established by its predecessor.

Thus, in addition to the range of art forms represented, cultural films were also introduced into the programmes, and invitations extended to the winners of major international youth competitions, providing not only a platform for some of the greatest artists of the present, but presenting a showcase the stars of tomorrow as well.

Highlights of this year’s festival include performances by the Orchestre Philharmonique de Monte-Carlo, the Orchestre Philharmonique Royal de Liège (pictured below), the Orchestre Symphonique National de la RAI, the Ensemble Intercontemperain, the Zengö Ensemble from Hungary, and French pianist, Philippe Bianconi.

Orchestre Philharmonique de Liege

There’s a programme dedicated to Japanese culture, another to the music of Morocco, and an exhibition of photographs of the Royal Ballet of Cambodia. In addition, there are lectures by musicologists, and masterclasses in which established artists share their knowledge and passion for instruments such as the saxophone (Carmen Lefrançois), the cello (Anne Gastinel), the harpsichord (Nicolau de Figueiredo) and piano (François-Frédéric Guy).

As with each year, la Nuit suprenante du Printemps des Arts extends an invitation to discover new worlds of sound in a night of surprises – “one evening, three different worlds and three surprises to look forward to”. This presentation includes a performance by dancers of the Academie de Danse Princesse Grace, and by 100 saxophonists drawn from the music conservatories of the region – Monaco, Nice, Antibes, Cannes, Grasse, Menton, Roquebrune Cap-Martin and Vence.


Le festival Printemps des Arts de Monte-Carlo runs from March 14th to April 13th. For full details of the events, venues, ticketing, and programme, please visit the festival website.


Opéra de Monte-Carlo
Salle Garnier
Place du Casino
MC 98000 Monaco

Tel: +377 98 06 28 28

Check in here on foursquare

Auditorium Rainier III
Boulevard Louis II
98000 Monaco

Tel: +377 93 10 84 00

Check in here on foursquare

Gilly Lloyd is a journalist, copy and creative writer, and editor of Preview, as well as a regular contributor to the Arts section of

All images courtesy Festival Printemps des Arts de Monte-Carlo; lead image © OPMC/Alain Hanel; photo of OPR Liège © A.S. Trebulak



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