As we wrote for our blog last year, la fête de la musique is an international celebration, started in France, held on June 21st. The day is usually marked by free live music performances in restaurants and bars as well as community spaces like parks. This year, we have decided to round up some DIY (do it yourself) ways to celebrate from home… or take your show on the road with your new instruments!


Make a Kazoo with Amy

Last year our library team went live to craft a musical instrument of our own! To make one Kazoo, you’ll need: a toilet paper roll, a piece of paper, tape or glue, an elastic band, wax paper, a pen, and any decorations you’d like to add.

Make 3 Instruments with La Maison des Maternelles et des Parents

In collaboration with l’association Talacatak, which specializes in the intersection of music, arts, and the environment through instrument creation with common recyclable items, this high production quality video will teach parents and kiddos to make shakers, a different kind of kazoo, and a cuica (a Brazillian friction drum that takes under 30 seconds to make)!

Make 3 different instruments with Julie

In this one video Julie (whose youtube alias is ManzaBull) provides three tutorials. The first is for castagnettes which are called castanets, clackers or palillos in English. Then she progresses into a mini banjo. Finally, she also creates un tambour (or, drum en anglais) to really round out our band of instruments.

Get creative with Solène!

With an abundance of ideas, Solène shows that just about anything can be an instrument with a little imagination. No need to go out and get new materials, get creative and create your own unique sound!

Henri Dès raconte - La fête de la musique

To round out this post, here is a story of a band of jungle animals that rock out on their own DIY instruments! I hope your DIY band is just as eventful and garners just as many applaudissements!

We hope that this post helps you enjoy celebrating la fête de la musique as it was intended - with plenty of music (or maybe just some DIY noise)!

Ingrid began her passion for French through the immersion program in Milton, MA, and has followed it around France and the world. She took a break from this first love to pursue a B.A. in English with a minor in Irish Studies at Boston College and a Masters of Library and Information Sciences at Simmons College. She is thrilled to meld her excitement for libraries and French language and culture in her position at the Center!

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