L he cultural and associative center of Courtenay (PCA) is one of the beautiful performance halls of Montargois, and it now wants to make it known. After a full house with Les Impromptus Molière , the gypsy jazz of Laya and Streba will be heard there on Friday 27 January. While the full program will be released soon.

The pole inaugurated in 2019 was weakened by the Covid

An invigorating wind blows through the new rooms of the Courtenay Cultural Center… Revitalizing the “Sleeping Beauty” is the objective sought by the new municipality. A few months ago, Julien Bardeille, the former “Mister culture” of the Gien conurbation, became the director of this establishment, which includes a performance hall but also a media library, a music school and an associative space.

By hiring this programming professional (he was the president of the Musikair festival), the new municipality seeks to develop an important cultural facility for the territory, inaugurated in 2019, and which cost more than 5 million euros. Until now underemployed, ignored by part of the population and further weakened by the Covid period, the site is today teeming with activities and projects.

“The PCA is very well placed: it is close to schools and the city centre. It has a strong socio-cultural vocation, by offering live shows, exhibitions, conferences, but also by being a pleasant place to welcome associations and the general public”, analyzes Christel Hecquet, culture assistant, a post which did not exist before.

Julien Bardeille adds: “The PCA must be a strong, beautiful, pleasant public space, a nerve center for everyone, a real place of life, meetings, exchanges. The WiFi is free there, there is furniture to accommodate people, magazines for free consultation. »

On the programming side, Julien Bardeille has selected quality professional shows, such as the January 27 concert bringing together clarinettist Ioan Streba and guitarist Jean-Baptiste Laya, two big names in gypsy jazz.

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The director insists on the policy of prices revised downwards at the pole, with a maximum of 10 euros. “There is an awareness of the local socio-economic context. A senior rate has been created,” he explains.

Target youth

Added to this is the desire to support this programming with peripheral cultural actions. In December, a first show Impromptu Moliere ticked all the boxes: both popular and qualitative, it sold out during the public performance and free for all. It was accompanied by meetings with actors and theater workshops at school and college. “The primary objective is to target young people and make it snowball with families. It is necessary to establish habits of attendance. There is a clear political will to address young people, which has never been done before,” emphasizes Julien Bardeille.

In addition, Christel Hecquet insists on the pole’s desire to open up: “For the first time, we are in contact with the other cultural players in the area. The fact is that the pole is the only public cultural establishment in this area. The actions that are carried out there, through the music school, the media library and the shows, undeniably have a territorial influence. Furthermore, in terms of programming, while continuing the collaboration with the music school, we have initiated a collaboration with local associations (such as the Arcana concert or the well-being fair). »

Courtenay – The awakening of the Cultural Center of Courtenay