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Nine Private Concerts Celebrating French Music Performed in Historic Buildings

(NEW YORK, NY) — UK based Martin Randall Travel (MRT) announces the arrival of "The Seine Music Festival" brochure, a new 7-day music festival, taking place along the River Seine June 14-21, 2009. Performances are in châteaux, churches and concert halls beside the Seine or a short drive away, some of them seldom-visited architectural jewels.   The nine concerts are private and exclusive to festival participants (maximum 125).   Festival participants will live on a modern and comfortable river cruiser, which will sail from Paris to Le Havre. In addition to the private concerts and onboard accommodation, participants receive all meals, travel on first-class Eurostar between the United Kingdom and Paris (if required), travel by river and road, and talks on music and architecture.

The Seine Music Festival will celebrate and explore a wide-ranging selection of music – both sacred and secular – by French composers. The repertoire starts with the sixteenth century, progresses to the ‘Grand Siècle' of the Sun-King, on through the French Romantics to the ‘Impressionists', Debussy and Ravel, and ends with music by two post-war masters, Olivier Messiaen and Francis Poulenc.

The nine concert venues, ranging from the grand and splendid – the Chapelle Royale at Versailles – to small and charming, have been chosen to bring out the best in the performers and the music they play.   Often the music is of the same period as the building in which it is played, and sometimes there are specific historical connections. There will also be daily talks by Richard Langham-Smith , a leading specialist on French music, and architectural historian John McNeill , lecturing on the buildings and leading some of the waking tours.

In addition to the world-class concerts, guests will also have the opportunity to visit   Monet's Garden at Giverny and the nearby Musee d'Art Americain (while it is closed to the public), the town of Rouen, and the ruins of the once great Abbey of Jumieges.

The MS Viking Seine, launched in 2000, is charted exclusively by MRT for this festival.   As both hotel and principal means of transport, the ship enables passengers to attend the concerts and visit some fine buildings in the region without having to change hotels or drive long distances. Like MRT's other river festivals, there is little regimentation, no obligatory seating plan, no on-board entertainment and no piped music.   All cabins have windows and air conditioning. The crew is fluent in English.

Prices range from £2,840 to £3,660 (British pounds) per person, based on the cabin category, and includes admission to all nine private concerts, roundtrip train travel between London St Pancras and Paris (reduction in price if you do not wish to use the train), accommodations for seven nights on board a comfortable riverboat, all meals (wine included with lunch and dinner), lectures, all bus transfers, and all tips and taxes. Single occupancy rates are also available.

Also offered, one pre-festival tour and two post-festival tours.   The pre-festival tour is   a 9-day itinerary exploring Mediaeval Art and Romanesque and Gothic Architecture in Angers, Poitiers and Le Mans.   The two post-festival tours choices are a 6-day itinerary exploring the Chateaux and Gardens around Paris and a 7-day tour examining the Gothic Cathedrals of Northern France.  

Martin Randall Travel is the pioneer and leader in the phenomenon of all-inclusive music festivals. The key feature is matching music with place – putting music in appropriate historic buildings, with concerts, which are private to participants.

A detailed itinerary is also available online at

For booking information send an email to or call at 011-44-20-8742-3355.


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