Organizations of outdoor festivals – including the Montreal Jazz Festival, which begins Thursday – are not alarmed by the episodes of smog that have suffocated Quebec in recent days, but continue to monitor the situation closely.
“That’s one of the challenges that events have to face,” says Naomie Rousseau, communications and digital development coordinator for FestiVoix, a music festival that will begin Thursday in the heart of Trois-Rivières. “We have protocols and measures in place” in the event that the air quality deteriorates, Rousseau said, without specifying the measures. The organization says it is working with the authorities to ensure that the event takes place safely.
The story is similar on the side of Team Spectra, which notably organizes the Montreal International Jazz Festival, whose launch is also Thursday, in Montreal. Oscar Jerome, Kokoroko and Christone “Kingfish” Ingram are among the performers scheduled to take to one of the outdoor stages that evening.
“We will monitor developments this week and work with the relevant authorities,” Spectra advised in writing.
La Noce festival, which kicks off on July 6 in Saguenay, where the number of fine particles in the air was high on Sunday, will make a decision shortly before the festival, “depending on the conditions at the time”, informs Greg Kitzler, relations of press. “We will have to check with an expert in the field who can then advise us,” he says.
Air quality was considered poor on Sunday in the largest city in Mauricie, but the FestiVoix is continuing its preparations for the festival. The aftermath of the pandemic has prepared organizations for all eventualities, Rousseau explains. “The events industry is constantly adjusting,” she adds.
On Monday, the improvement in air quality in Trois-Rivières delighted the organization, as did the rain forecast for the next few days.
“For the first time, for a festival, it would be good if he got wet,” she laughs…but before the festivities begin.
On Sunday, the air quality in Montreal was the worst in the world, according to the IQair site. Environment Canada’s smog alerts, which affected most regions, including Montreal, Mauricie and Saguenay–Lac-Saint-Jean, were lifted on Monday.