Vienne’s Jazz Festival… with the Club Val Thorens special guests
3 years ago saw the start of a beautiful relationship between Jazz in Vienne and Val Thorens; our shared values and desire to create crazy projects drawing us together. We came up with the idea of offering a totally new experience, which became a reality this year with 20 Club Val Thorens members being invited exclusively to enjoy a made in Val Thorens evening… at Vienne’s Jazz Festival!
A month before the official VIP evening, I was desperate to be there already… and given the excited reactions by Club members to take part in this unique event, it seemed I was not the only one! 30 days earlier, we felt as though we were there. I can still hear Justine and her boyfriend Kevin on the phone saying “thank you so much for our gift, we couldn’t wait for you to call us!”
Saturday 1st July finally arrived. It was pouring down as Jérôme, Thibaut and I arrived in Vienne, and we got stuck in traffic…But then all of a sudden, the sun came out through the clouds, lighting up our cosy Val Thorens’ themed VIP area.
And as one good thing leads to another, Guillaume and his wife appeared, followed closely by Jean-Charles and a good friend of his. Nibbling on tasty snacks and sipping a delicious glass of rosé, it felt like we were transported to the mountains of Val Thorens: “when we came to the resort for the first time 30 years ago, there was so much snow, we could ski over the top of the parked cars”, “I love Boismint, it’s my favourite area”, “I always warm up on the Caron red run to start off the day the way I mean to go on!”. Dressed in summer clothes, with Mc Solaar playing in the background, it was almost as if we were back in Val Tho… Gradually, all the VIP guests got together and started chatting, sharing stories, laughing… and so did we! Stéphane took a polaroid snapshot of Sophie and her younger sister, while Gilles and Sylvie sampled the delicious amuses bouches. Not forgetting Eric, who was chatting away with Guillaume, as Justine and Kevin relaxed in the deckchairs…. I stood back for a moment to soak up the scene… everyone was happy and it felt good to be together, with no fuss or airs and graces.
Ding-a-ling… 8pm, time for the concerts to begin! We grabbed our cushions and our ponchos just in case, and headed off to the area set aside for us in the Roman ampitheatre. As we sat down, I wondered why everyone was looking up towards the top of the amphitheatre. I turned round and there….. wow, I was lost for words!
There were concert-goers sat right up to the very top, and it’s high up there! It was breath-taking. Apparently, singers and musicians are often left speechless too (which could be problematic….). In a relaxed atmosphere, where people from all walks of life sat side by side, chatting, the voices of Mc Solaar, Arsenik, De La Soul and so many others rang out, filling this vast expanse. It was a unique moment shared by Club members, the Club team and other festival-goers, who were thrilled to find out more about how and why Val Thorens had ended up here.
After the crowd’s cries of “encore, encore” died down and the lights went off on stage, this amazing experience came to an end. A little sleepy perhaps after a long day, we left starry-eyed and happy, safe in the knowledge that we would see each other again next winter.
If you think you never win anything, just ask Sophie who said “but I never win anything, I’m gobsmacked!”. Eric, Guillaume, Sophie, Jean-Charles, Justine, Gilles, Sylvie and Stéphane had a go at becoming one of the Club Val Thorens special guests. What if it’s you next time? I don’t know about you, but I was always told that you have to be in it to win it... ;)