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About Festival de Lanaudière

History and mission


Around 1975, Joliette claimed to have a good number of active music organizations: a cultural centre that supported the city’s concert activity, several music schools, three youth orchestras, a summer music camp, a regional music competition, and various choirs. In other words, it was a musical setting waiting for something greater.

The opportunity for this “something greater” arose in 1977, when Father Fernand Lindsay, Cleric of St-Viateur and Director of the Cultural Centre, took a leap of faith and invited the Montreal Symphony Orchestra to give three concerts at the Cathédrale de Joliette. They were well received by the people of Joliette. The time had therefore come to take a step further. Recalling the European festivals he had visited some years earlier, Father Lindsay knew the time had come to make his dream come. He was joined by two friends who would be at the centre of the Festival’s development for years to come: Marcel Masse and René Charette.

An outstanding

The Festival had become a true engine for tourism and economic development for the entire Lanaudière region, but lacked one essential ingredient to completely fulfil its mission: an outdoor amphitheatre. “Its construction,”  said René Charette, Board Chair, “represents a golden opportunity to expand our cultural market by creating a centre for excellence.”

The Festival thus came to a critical turning point in 1989 with this new amphitheatre, which seats 2,000 listeners under its roof and 6,000 more on the lawn. Many musicians and music critics who have experienced similar venues in the United States are unstinting in their praise for Lanaudière’s amphitheatre, particularly with respect to its impressive acoustics.

Architect Michel Gallienne and his colleagues, set designer Yvon Sanche and acoustician Lionel J. Lortie—all from Quebec City—created a gem, and everyone agrees the setting is magical. “Music has built a nest in Lanaudière, and this will lead to great things,” said Father Lindsay on the night the structure was inaugurated.

A story of success
and loyalty

With the appointment of a co-artistic director, Louise Forand-Samson, and new general manager, François Bédard, the 1990s saw further developments built on past achievements. The quality of performances remained high and attendance increased, as did the Festival’s reputation and the enthusiasm it generated among critics and music lovers. The Festival de Lanaudière had carved an enviable and unique niche for itself as one of the top musical events.

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Quality policy

Festival International de Lanaudière is committed to welcoming visitors in a professional and friendly manner to ensure an enjoyable experience. Visitors will be kept in the loop about our activities and services and about any changes that might occur. We ensure our visitors a safe and secure Festival visit, and make every effort to accommodate those in need of adapted services. Your satisfaction is important to us, and will respond to any feedback you have in a timely manner.

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Board of directors

Executive committee

Dr. Denis-Richard Roy

Pierre R. Desmarais
President – Fondation Pierre Desmarais Belvédère

Vivienne Cadorette
Owner – Pharmacy Jean Coutu

Pierre Lambert
Consultant in damage insurance

Marlène Larue
Director – Training and Development Director
Vice-president – Human Resources


Denis Andlauer
Director of Operations – CDPQ Infra

Evelyne Caron
Pharmacy Owner

Julie Gauthier
Regional Director of Government Affairs and Health Policy – Amgen Canada

Dr. Claude Godin
Clinique d’orthopédie Saint-Urbain

Christian Jetté
President Publishing, Book Sector – Québecor

Pierre Messier
Lawyer, consultant and administrator of societies

On July 4th 2019, Mr René Charrette, aged 86, passed away. He was a founder and member emeritus of the board for 42 years.

Festival staff

Executive Office

Xavier Roy
General Manager

Sylvie Gagné
Administration Director

Mychèle Arbour
and Sponsorship Coordinator

Emma-Geneviève Murray St-Louis
Executive Assistant

Émilie Brideau

Paul Lafortune
IT Services Manager

Artistic Direction

Renaud Loranger
Artistic Director

Pierre-Luc Moreau
Artistic coordinator


Chantal Neveu
Marketing Director

Normand Paquette
Tourism Consultant


Louis Carpentier
Technical Director