Cannes Fireworks Festival & Competition: 2023 Guide
This is a complete guide to the spectacular 2023 Cannes Fireworks Festival & Competition, written by a local insider. Below is all the information you’ll need, including the schedule, locations, ticketing, the festival’s history, and insider information.
Every summer, the French Riviera enjoys spectacular displays of lights, sounds, and colors during the Cannes Fireworks Festival (Festival d’Art Pyrotechnique Cannes). Enjoy summer nights filled with music, lights, and colors.
The fireworks are set off with the delightful backdrop of the Mediterranean Sea. The musical track, choreography, and the symbolism of the theme all orchestrate with the feu d’artifice. It will all fire up from the barges in the bay.
The themes, set by the organizers of the show, vary each year (find this year’s theme and program here) and participants must strictly follow them. The participants from different countries will not only charm the crowd but compete with each other as well.
It is the most prestigious fireworks competition around the globe today. About 700,000 onlookers see the show held in the 400-meter waterfront of Cannes. The crowd gathers at La Croisette, having the full view of the event. The reflections in the water and the combination of sound take the entire area into an enchanting world away from the daily monotone life.
Competing countries will fight for the “Vestale d’Argent.” Every four years, winners will return to battle for the coveted “Vestale d’Or“. Criteria include best music, stage, synchronization, rhythm, sequence, and colors.
The Festival’s History
The origin of the event dates takes place in 1967, when the company Ruggieri and the town of Cannes jointly developed, to the great amazement of the residents of Cannes and its visitors, an international competition between the most famous pyrotechnicians of the age.
With fireworks set off from barges anchored in the bay, the jousts were orchestrated to the rhythm of a musical track and choreographed along a symbolic theme: the bases for a brand-new concept were laid. They would vary slightly over the years, while the ever more spectacular performances by the pyrotechnicians would increase in sophistication and originality to make this Festival one of the most prestigious pyrotechnic meetings in the world nowadays.
The Fireworks Competition
The fascination for this universal art, which blends the most exuberant creativity with mastery of ingredients of an explosive nature, has given the Cannes competition a global reputation. Every year, the selected pyrotechnicians compete for the highly coveted “Vestale d’Argent” and, every four years, the winners return to battle for the “Vestale d’Or”, “Vestale d’Argent” and “Vestale de Bronze”, precious door openers awarded to “the best of the best”.
Innovation, rich aesthetics, stage setting, synchronization, rhythm… so many criteria considered by the jury to evaluate each of the multicolored musical frescos in the competition. At the same time, for several years spectators have had the chance to vote for the award of the “Public Prize”: for this, beyond the technical aspects of the performances, this is a true “love at first sight” and a recognition much prized by the artists, the tamers of bombs and magic powders.
Video of the Cannes Fireworks Festival
Cannes 2023 Fireworks Festival Details
Event Type: Fireworks / Pyrotechnic Festival
Date: At 10pm on nights in July and August (2023 dates are yet to be announced)
Social Media: Facebook
Website & Program: Official Website
Location: Watch from the beach or boardwalk
Transportation: Check out our guide to Cannes’s transportation options.
Similar Events: For more fireworks events, check out our complete Monaco & the French Riviera events calendar.
Please Note: As much as we want everyone to have fun on the French Riviera, we do not think that the noise (or pollution) from fireworks are a good thing, because fireworks are harmful to human health and very destructive to birds and wildlife. In Italy, they have made their fireworks silent and have set them to classical music. In Monaco, many events have switched from explosives to drones. We hope that everywhere else will soon follow suit.