I’m not just in France to do a French Immersion Course and to learn French, I want to study the French culture as well. From my time in Montpellier with my various French host-families and from spending time learning from French natives I find it amazing how in general the French and English are joined by so many things culturally but also so unmistakably distinct. So close but yet so far. As this is the case I’m always eager to soak up any French culture I can, obviously doing a French language immersion course with a host-family is the best way to do this so I feel very lucky. To this end me and my fellow French students found a perfect little gig to go to right in the centre of Montpellier.
French Students Head to the Heart of Montpellier
So me and my fellow French learners from Easy French Language Immersion School in Montpellier headed off into the streets of this lovely city. We were headed for ‘La Pleine Lune’; a little bar in the centre of town just a few hundred metres from our French language school and the name translates to ‘the full moon’. We had heard from a few natives about this place, the general consensus was that it was a little rough around the edges but for music it was one of the top the places to go in Montpellier. With the vast majority of their gigs being free and them getting some great local artists regularly we thought it was perfect. We also happened to hear that a band that was doing some covers of a really traditional French artist was playing so off we went in our quest for French culture.
Time to Put Those French Skills to Good Use
We arrived at ‘La Pleine Lune’ and there was a fair few of us from the EasyFrench Language school in Montpellier. A mixture of Swiss, Columbians, an Italian, a Japanese, a Brazilian and myself. So a great mix of three continents. The first thing that is cool about this place is that it has an absolutely HUGE outside terrace. So if you want to come out for a smoke, sit in the crisp air or cosy up next to a patio heater you can be almost sure to get a seat. As we went inside we saw the bar which is immediately in front of you as you go inside with chalk boards surrounding it showing what is on offer. Apparently they always have a drink or two around 4 euros so you can get a bargain. The bar tenders were absolutely lovely too and very welcoming. We saw they were taking out hot food to the terrace as well so if you do fancy coming for some grub you can.
The Traditional Music, Has the French Immersion Course Paid Off?
When we arrived the band was already in full swing. The venue was lovely, quite intimate with a couple of the locals dancing their hearts out already. The band consisted of a guitarist/ singer, a violinist and chap at the back who was playing the accordion and it looked like he was having the time of his life! The music was wonderful and it really felt like we were up close and personal with French culture. The classic musical style in a modern bar, it was perfect.
We were challenging each other to put those French language skills to good use and discern the lyrics of the songs and too my surprise I was able to follow a bit which was a great feeling. I was so pleased it wasn’t long before I was belting out the clearer lines myself.
The band switched from bouncy jovial tunes to a couple more solemn numbers that had us all silent and just listening intently. It was all lovely music however and as the night went on the dance floor got fuller as the French locals started to arrive in force. Realising we were foreigners a lot of them took a friendly interest in us and were asking us where we were from and gave us a chance to try out some of the new stuff we’d been learning at the French language school. A few beers and some musical enjoyment had us all pretty confident too.
So if you’re in the mood to get an extra dimension on your experience of the culture whilst you’re doing a French language immersion course in Montpellier you should head over to this bar. Full of French natives to practice and learn French with and good music of all types to enjoy.