Ahead of the twinning of the two villages, a small group of Pontevès villagers travelled to Montegrosso Pian Latte in northern Italy in 2013. Inspired by the Italianslove of singing, they decided to have a go themselves. CANTEM’ was born.

Outdoor Performance near Tavernes

CANTEM’ is a choir of some 50 local people based in Pontevès. But its members come from numerous villages around the region.

The CANTEM’ repertoire is eclectic, ranging from Giuseppi Verdi (Nabucco) and Joseph Noyon (Hymne à la nuit) to traditional Christmas songs like Gloria and Douce Nuit to political songwriters such as George Mustaki (Le temps de vivre).

Prior to the interruption caused by the covid pandemic, the choir performed in villages around the region, whether in village halls or in inspiring outdoor locations such as the grounds of the Chapelle Notre Dame de Bellevue, high above the village of Tavernes.

The choir has also played a major role in a number of performances for the Theatre Under The Stars series. But the highlight of the year has generally been regarded as the Christmas performance in the church of Pontevès. Taking place on the last Friday before the Christmas break, it is followed by fireworks and a gathering of the local community in the village square to enjoy a chat and drink warm mulled wine. As we write in 2022, it is unclear whether this will return soon. Our film here was recorded in 2015, at one of the earlier Christmas performances.


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