1999–2008: The Festival Enters Its Second Decade!
A festival that is gaining momentum
By 2008, 20 years had passed since the inaugural Carrefour mondial de l’accordéon in 1989. The event had become one of the leading festivals in the Chaudière-Appalaches region, generating significant economic benefits for Montmagny and the surrounding municipalities. A study conducted at the turn of the 21st century estimated the economic impact of the event at $8.9 million. At the time, the festival was attracting more than 40,000 spectators—not only from Quebec but also from the rest of Canada, the United States and even Europe. From Rivière-du-Loup to Lévis, accommodations were sold out months in advance. Montmagny was teeming with visitors and local restaurants were packed. In short, the city was literally moving to the sounds of the “squeezebox.”
With constantly updated programming, the event was far from running out of steam. During its second decade, the Carrefour mondial de l’accordéon continued to feature artists from all over the world, including Scottish accordionist Gary Blair. This worthy representative of traditional Scottish music played the festival in 2002 and 2005. Having won the UK accordion championships at the age of 17, he quickly established himself as the standard bearer for Celtic music. He also plays popular and classical music. A teacher as well as a musician, Gary Blair enjoys using new technologies to promote the accordion. He harnesses the power of social media and communication software like Skype to teach students the world over, clearly demonstrating the limitless potential of the accordion in the 21st century!
Gary Blair— (captions available in both FR and EN) View the video with a description