Euro Festival Recontres Trans Musicales is the United Nations of Music, but in an Airport Hangar

Bands from all over the world converge in France to participate in one of Europe's oldest festivals.

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Jan 3 2017, 4:04pm

All photos by the author

About a three and a half hour drives southwest of Paris, you'll find the university town of Rennes, France. Every year for the past 38 years the Rencontres Trans Musicales Festival (or Les Trans for short) takes place, making it one of the oldest in Europe. The festival itself takes place at a few venues in the downtown core but the main events are located at the Parc Expo, massive industrial halls located near the Rennes airport. 

Known for breaking new artists and showcasing talent at the beginning of their careers, the festival brings in acts from all corners of the world, spanning genres and styles: it offers everything from electronic music to hip-hop to folk from Estonia to feminist rap from Iceland.

We met up with a few of the bands performing this year for some portraits and they include locals acts from Rennes and France like ColoradoReykjavíkurdætur, an all female collective of rappers from Iceland; Nova Twins, a punk rock duo from England; a doo-wop trio called The Barberettes from South Korea; brass band Lucky Chops from NYC and glittery PWR BTTM also from the U.S.   


Christine McAvoy is a writer living in Vancouver. Follow her on Twitter.