With the Cultural Olympiad, projects resonating sport and culture are planned throughout France. A way for the territories to come together for a unique event: Paris 2024.

It is an event that, despite its name, will irrigate its values throughout France. The 2024 Paris Olympic and Paralympic Games will, of course, highlight the capital of France, but also – do we know enough about it? many French cities and territories. The same applies to the Cultural Olympiad, this vast cultural program that will, under the leadership of choreographer Dominique Hervieu, artistic director of the Organizing Committee of the Olympic Games, deploy throughout France disruptive events and inclusive and participatory events.

So, sport and culture, two worlds that don’t know each other? Not so sure, according to François Laurent, ministerial delegate to the Olympic and Paralympic Games at the Ministry of Culture, who reminds us of the importance of culture in the Games, especially with the opening and closing ceremonies, which are major artistic events. « Pierre de Coubertin insisted that culture be at the heart of the Games, he adds. Until 1948, the Games also included tests in literature, music, sculpture, etc. » Today, these events have disappeared, but significant cultural programming remains, beginning at the end of the previous Games and ending at the end of the Paralympic Games. « It is an opportunity to bring together the world of sport and culture to showcase our creativity and heritage ", he continues.


Highlights of the Cultural Olympiad, archives...

Among the highlights supported by the Ministry of Culture, we note the holding of major national events that will put themselves in the colors of Olympism, such as the Cultural Summer or the European Heritage Days in 2023, or the Music festival and the Reading nights 2024. The course of the flame, which will cover all the territories, will also be an opportunity to program cultural events.

The Cultural Olympiad is also the Great collection of sports archives. Organized on the model of the Great Collection of the Great War by the Service des Archives de France, this project aims to ask the French to provide family documents that give a more personal focus to this historic event. « This initiative is aimed at all: community sports department, federations, local clubs but also athletes, supporters, coaches, OEMs and of course the general public and schools Brigitte Guigueno, Assistant to the Deputy Director of Archives Management, Communication and Promotion at the Ministry of Culture. Everyone can bring paper or digital documents on sport in the very broad sense of the term, including for example the notions of leisure and entertainment. « The idea is to create intergenerational dialogue, whether children go to their parents and grandparents or discuss it in class ». The services of the National Archives can advise the communities and host the documents and then promote them through exhibitions or workshops. « This is an eminently civic initiative. These documents reflect the history of individuals and society with topics such as the feminization of sport. It’s another way of valuing the territory ” adds Brigitte Guigueno.

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... at the cinema

Other initiatives: those to be launched by the National Film Centre. The first is a series of concerts on films about sport. Two feature films were chosen, The great passion by André Hugon, staging a rugby team and The novel Carpentier, biopic of boxer Georges Carpentier. For these two works, a musical accompaniment is planned and available from the European Heritage Days 2023.

The second initiative concerns the domain of video games with a partnership with Ubisoft, the publisher of the game Just Dance, which allows dancing by following the dancers' movements on the screen. This partnership also includes the Palace of Versailles as players will have to imagine choreographies around court dances with a competition all over France. « The goal is to marry heritage and video games and to show the body in motion from a new angle ” said Leslie Thomas, Secretary General of the National Film and Motion Picture Centre.

The Cultural Olympiad, the Drac Ile-de-France and the partner communities

The Cultural Olympiad is also the involvement of regional cultural affairs directorates (Drac) who work on a daily basis with local authorities, in particular the Drac Ile-de-France. The latter has already started several events with communities such as the cities of Nanterre and Colombes (both will host Olympic events in 2024) that work together, the Paris University Club which hosts authors, the department of Val d'Oise, where cultural structures meet on the subject of sport. The Drac Ile-de-France also has a project with theRegional Health Agency, which brings together artists with disabilities and disabilities. “ These are concrete projects that show how we are meeting these Games with the communities and the Ministry of Culture. We will keep these 2024 Paris Games a souvenir of a great sporting and cultural adventure Laurent Roturier, Regional Director of Cultural Affairs for Ile-de-France, said: