• This Thursday, October 28, is the international day of Creole languages ​​and cultures.

  • For five years, the Festival du Mois Kréyol has been organizing a series of events and workshops over two months to promote this regional language, the most spoken in France, across France and overseas.

  • “Creole has its place in French cultural heritage”, explains Chantal Loïal, founder of the Difé Kako company and initiator of the project.

 Yekrik! Yekrak!

 “Behind the scenes of the Maurice Ravel Conservatory in the 13th arrondissement of Paris, Chantal Loïal, president of the Difé Kako company, puts the finishing touches before the entry on the scene of the Cercle equals semi-circle to the square troupe. About twenty dancers perform on this international day of Creole language and culture, as part of the Mois Kréyol festival.

After the health storm that swept the planet in 2020, the event, created five years ago, resumes its mission of promoting Creole cultures with a rich program of theater, dance, music, documentaries and round tables. , until November 28, in France, overseas, in Montreal and Trinidad and Tobago.

"The festival calls for the bringing together of the diversities of the world", rejoices Chantal Loïal, the conductor of the festival.

For an audience that has little or no knowledge of Creole culture… What is the Kréyol Month Festival, in a few words?

The Festival is already Creole.

In particular, we are holding round tables on this language to make it known.

We are still more than 10 million to speak it all over the world.

The Kréyol Month is also to promote culture, music, dance, theater and also cuisine.

The idea is that Creole-speaking artists can have visibility everywhere, both in France and overseas and above all to ensure that Creole culture is better known and to take hold of all Creoles. .

We also want all associations to be able to federate and be bearers of the project.

Creole is also the mix of people, in a unique and plural way.

Why did you launch such an event?

Because there was a lack in France. Creole is a rich culture that is part of the small and the great history of France. This culture happens to be intergenerational. We can transmit music, dance to our children. France could not do without such an event, which is both fueled by reflections and at the same time discussions with very festive round tables. We are peoples who have been in suffering and in resilience, which have sometimes led us to be in the tragedy but also in joy. We know how to tackle the political and societal issues with which we are confronted such as chlordecone, Sargassum ... On our small scale of island islands and territories, it is very important for us to exchange ideas, to make things happen,but also to live pleasant moments, to live together.

Creole is the most widely spoken regional language in France (with more than 1.6 million speakers) ... Can we say that Creole culture has its place in French cultural heritage?

Creole has its place in the French cultural heritage.

Should politicians already accept it… Creoles, like all other regional languages ​​such as Occitan, Basque or Breton, are fond of their language.

Besides, we talk to each other.

A language, which remains alive, which is part of the intangible heritage, is very important for building itself tomorrow.

How do you represent the diversity of the different Creoles (Guadeloupe, Guyanese, Réunion, etc.)?

The diversity comes first of all from our stakeholders who travel from their overseas territories, from the scientists present, from our artists regardless of their discipline, from the associations.

Are the various shows and workshops made accessible to those who do not speak Creole?

The festival is open to everyone.

We also speak French.

We have teachers who translate and work with people who are not Creole speakers, such as the storyteller Igo Drané or Manuel Allamellou, as well as with international associations, in Canada, in Trinidad-and-Tobago.

Everything is didactic.

We have also set up videoconferencing exchanges, available throughout the year.

Have you observed progress in the representation of Creole or, on the contrary, is this regional language threatened?

The language is no longer threatened.

Now the parents would have to agree to pass it on.

Creole is no longer forbidden as it used to be.

I find that today's children are very proud to speak Creole, to have the Creole accent, to support it so that we know where they come from.

It is very rich.

I am quite positive and convinced that it is a language that will endure.

An sèten mèm

(I am even sure of it).

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