French Week in Pietermaritzburg

The annual French Week, in association with Alliance Francaise PMB, runs from Sunday, May 26 to Sunday, June 2, 2019.

Everyone is invited to join in a series of events held daily in Pietermaritzburg and enjoy the innate French / Francophone vibes.

*3pm, Sunday May 26 at Hayfield’s Lutheran Church. Organ recital by Dr A-J Bethke, featuring French organ compositions. Also, a poetry reading by Michael Lambert with poetry inspired by the Prince Imperial’s story. Prince Imperial, also known as Louis-Napoléon Bonaparte, was famously killed in an ambush by Zulu warriors while on a patrol in the Nqutu area of Zululand (his grave site is pictured above) on June 1, 1879.

An artwork depicting the final moments of the Prince Imperial, Louis-Napoléon Bonaparte. Picture: Wikipedia

*10am Monday, May 27: A guided visit of the Prince Imperial exhibition at Msunduzi Museum. Free.

*1pm Wednesday, May 29: Prince Imperial concert – Project Gateway, Old Prison Cafe. No cost.

*10am Thursday, May 30: A guided visit of the French-created stained-glass windows of St Mary’s Catholic church, a parish run by the French Missionary order of the Oblates of Mary Immaculate. Hosted by Michael Lambert. No cost.

*6 for 6.30pm, Friday, May 31: Official Reception at Tatham Art Gallery. The guest of honour is Vincent Frontczyk, director of the Alliance Française in Durban. Performances by local artists. No cost. A cash bar available. By invitation, however, if you are interested in attending, contact the project leader, Glenn on 082 677 9997.

*9.30am, Saturday, June 1: Memorial mass for the Prince Imperial at Allard House Chapel. No cost. After the mass, a convoy will proceed along the Route Prince Impérial to Pomeroy to have tea with the French Augustinian community, which tends to 550 Aids orphans. Thereafter, to Dundee where a soirée française will be held at Chez Nous B’nB. Accommodation and dinner are at own cost. (Contact Chez Nous, 034 2121014).

The following morning commemorative ceremonies take place at the Prince Impérial monument at Uqweqwe. No cost.

*Anyone keen to “venture into the interior” and to share transport, please contact Glenn on 082 677 9997. Any queries regarding French week can be directed to Glenn, also on email address: gflanagan@webafrica.org.za