Fête des Vignerons, a UNESCO Recognized Cultural Event Taking Place in Vevey, Switzerland
Updated: Dec 6, 2019
The Fête des Vignerons (Winegrowers’ Festival) is a traditional festival which takes place in Vevey four or five times per century. It has been organised by the Confrérie des Vignerons (Brotherhood of Winegrowers) in Vevey since 1797. We attended the last Fête, which took place in July/August 2019. For nearly one month, the city of less than 18,000 people hosted this pageant that was performed in a purpose-built arena along the shore of Lake Geneva.
The 2019 edition of the festival was recommended as one of National Geographic's "world's most exciting destinations".
The daily show had more than 5,500 actors, singers, and dancers, most of them amateurs, who performed before 20,000 spectators.
This year's performance was directed by Daniele Finzi Pasca, who previously worked with Cirque du Soleil. He also created the closing ceremony for the Turin XX Winter Olympic Games in 2006. They had day and night shows. We attended both of them. The show represented a year in the life of the vineyard through 21 action-packed scenes. This year’s event also received a technological boost with the world's largest LED floor with a size of 870 square meters.
The shows are great, but what makes this event extraordinary are the festivities happening around the city of Vevey during the Fête des Vignerons. From morning into the night, a dozen stage areas host concerts, performances and various activities. They also have a number of free parades where you can see the thousand of participants walking in the streets of Vevey.
The wine cellars are an essential ingredient to the Fête des Vignerons. They are open to the general public. There are dozen of cellars. The majority of cellars are dedicated to the troupes participating to the event. All located within a three-minute walk from the arena, they propose the great wines of the region