The official photos of the Fête des Vignerons 2019 TO THE OFFICIAL WEBSITE OF THE WINEGROWERS FESTIVAL

4, 5, 7, 8, and 9 AUGUST 1905: A JOINT EFFORT

Morax and Doret in perfect unison

The 1905 Winegrowers Festival belongs to René Morax and Gustave Doret. The poet and the musician fully expressed the artistic ideal of the Winegrowers Festival for the very first time:

“…(it) was truly the celebration of an entire people gathered to exalt not only the work in the vineyards but the grandeur and beauty of the land. The path between the vineyards became the royal road along which, like during ancient triumphal processions, an entire people march behind the floats of the gods and the parade of the crowned winegrowers.” René Morax, in Ch. Apothéloz, Histoire et myths de la Fête des Vigneroons, Le Cep et la Rose

The culmination of the Festivals of the 19th century

A poet and man of the theatre, Morax was the first to structure the Festival and to create a scenario. The Festivals of the 19th century were like patchwork, because many authors worked on them. The 1905 Festival is consistent from start to finish. The performance was entirely produced on the Market Square, and was separate from the pageant, which had little in common with the parades of the 18th century or the dancing pageants of the 19th century.

Winter opened the Festival

Gustave Doret: a popular air

The music is a splendid artistic cascade transported by the poetry of Morax’s lyrics. Some 1,800 singers and musicians executed Doret’s score. The 1905 Winter act included a choir describing “the Earth’s sleep”, one of Gustave Doret’s most remarkable pieces of music.

Attention to detail

Additionally, as if striving for even more authenticity, women were finally accepted without restriction, with the Bacchantes played by charming young girls. For the first time, a film was shot from the stands and amateur photographers were also present. Thanks to the profits made, in February 1906 the Brotherhood reimbursed the participants 40% of the value of their costumes.


Abbot-President: Emile Gaudard
Direction: René Morax
Music: Gustave Doret
Libretto: René Morax, first true poet, first real writer to create a plan for the Festival, wrote a poem and not a patchwork
Costumes: Jean Morax


Louis Chessex and Louis Curchod (61 winegrowers also received distinctions and awards)


Ancient temple in neo-classical style
Altar of the three gods
3 gates connected by colonnades
Horseshoe shape
Centre block higher than side stands
12 500 seats


Shift in cycle of the seasons, performance opened with Winter and closed with Autumn
Sacred celebration of the tasks and the days
Cow-herders in Summer
New characters: elderly men and women; spinners, Swiss and cantonal banners in the arena
Bacchantes were women
5 brass bands and, for the first time, Basel Pipers and Drummers
1 orchestra including, among others, 2 military bands and 12 harps
Pageant totally separate from the performance


1,800 participants
6 performances and 2 parades
Prices of seats CHF 2.00 to 25.00.
Festival costs CHF 625,338
Profits CHF 40,664.70


Summer Scene: harvesters and haymakers, Winegrowers Festival 1905
The cow-herders and their herd, Winegrowers Festival parade 1905
VENDANGEUSESGrape-picker: drawing by Jean Moray, costume designer of the Winegrowers Festival 1905
One of the canteens at the Winegrowers Festival 1905
The Wedding Notary, Ch. Rebmann during the Winegrowers Festival 1905