Le PianO du Lac 2020

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Le PianO du Lac is a series of outdoor concerts all performed on water, and at the heart of every show is a floating piano. These musical events take place across France and Spain in the summer months. Lakes, ponds, rivers, canals, and harbours all become the stage, and these locations are always beautiful.

a floating Yamaha piano being played by a girl whilst the other paddles.
“Melting Flotte” – Le PianO du Lac performance. Photo: Helene Roux

In 2019 the company toured three different floating concerts and attracted a total audience of over 45,000.

Le PianO du Lac first started in 2014. Covid-19 threatened to scupper the 2020 events, but fortunately, as the concerts are all outdoors, most of those planned could go ahead.

This year the concerts will take place on 100 different lakes and rivers across France and Spain. The public is invited to come along, bring their chairs/rugs/picnics and experience the magic of these piano-based shows from the natural tranquillity of the waters-edge. And some of the locations, especially those in the alps, are really spectacular.

A pianist, violinist and cellist, with their instruments floating on an alpine lake
“Musiques Flottantes” (Floating Music) – Le PianO du Lac performance. Photo: Sophie Goyard

There are four separate shows taking place across France and Spain:

  1. “Melting Flotte” (France) – piano and vocal duo – a classical recital and French songs
  2. “Floating Music” (France) – piano, violin, cello and vocals – various poetic compositions
  3. “Yoopi Jazz Boat” (France) – piano, trumpet, trombone, banjo and washboard – trad. jazz
  4. “Pianola” (Spain) – piano, trumpte, vocal – music and poetry.

But all have one thing in common… a floating piano.

The company uses Yamaha grands for most performances, although the “Yoopi Jazz Boat” show features an upright. These instruments are either mounted on floating platforms, or actually re-fashioned to look more like an actual boat.

image shows piano mounted within the deck of a catamaran in fornt of an audience
The floating Yamaha grand before a performance. Photo: Loïc Mollet

Outdoor Piano Recitals

Pianos are often at the centre of amazing, inspirational, outdoor performances. World Piano News ran a story about the Piano Vertical earlier this year which involved “flying” a piano from a crane over spectacular locations.

And mention must be made of the In a Landscape piano concert series, which takes place every summer in and around some of Oregon’s (USA) most stunning scenery.

jazz band playing their instruments whilst of a floating platform
“Yoopi Jazz Boat” – Le PianO du Lac performance. Photo: Etienne Renzo

Le PianO du Lac summer 2020 tour ends mid-September. Ticketing is voluntary, however the group suggests a price of 10 euros.

A full list of dates and locations can be found on the Le PianO du Lac website.

Note: The “O” in PianO is intentional!


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