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Review: So Frenchy So Chic

Arts & Culture

So Frenchy So Chic kicked off the Adelaide Festival Centre’s inaugural French Festival in style, delighting the city’s Francophiles with an evening of chanson Française, picnic-style dining and relaxed joie de vivre vibes.

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After successful runs in Sydney and Melbourne in previous years, this year So Frenchy So Chic added Adelaide to its line-up, with a Friday night concert at Pinky Flat featuring four headline acts from France.

I’m a self-professed Francophile and long-time listener of French music, so the event had my name written all over it – and it didn’t disappoint. From the psychedelic surf-rock sounds of ’60s-inspired girl band Juniore, to upbeat rapper Féfé, the line-up was both varied and star-studded, and had me jumping out of my seat to join the dance crowd.

Juniore on stage at Pinky Flat. Photo: Karl Schwerdtfeger

Parisian all-girl trio L.E.J was a standout, bringing a mix of classic pop covers (Destiny Child’s “Survivor”, anyone?) and originals to the fore. With millions of hits on YouTube and a debut album on the way, the group proved why they’re so popular in France, and the Adelaide crowd embraced their mash-ups of both familiar and unfamiliar songs.

The intensity was lifted when audience favourite Féfé entered the stage, delivering on his promise to make the crowd “go crazy.” The French-born artist of Nigerian descent performed a selection of tracks from his recent album Mauve, and left many (myself included) with sore legs after what felt like one massive dance party.

General Elektriks. Photo: Karl Schwerdtfeger

After an intense set from Féfé, the festival ambiance dropped somewhat when final act General Elektriks took to the stage. Despite their obvious talent and passion, the band wasn’t able to match the hype of the previous set. Revising the festival’s line-up and cutting the amount of time between sets might help to leave audiences engaged right up until the end.

Overall, however, So Frenchy So Chic delivered on its promise to capture a sense of joie de vivre reminiscent of long afternoons in the Parisian sun, carving out a niche in Adelaide’s bursting festival scene.

So Frenchy So Chic was presented at Pinky Flat on Friday night as part of the Adelaide French Festival.

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