Since 2012, French Night, also known as “La soirée de la francophonie,” has been a beloved annual Needham High School event to celebrate French language and culture. This year, it will be held on Friday, March 1, at 7 p.m. in the NHS auditorium. The event is free and open to all. 

“French Night is a celebration of French culture with many fun performances and delicious, free, French food,” said French Club president Jason Wu. He explained the goal of the event is to expose people to French culture and entice eighth grade students into taking French. “But most importantly [it’s] to have fun,” he said. 

Participants at NHS French Night 2023/ Credit: Reina Hneidi

“The event provides an excellent opportunity to promote language learning, as students can share their knowledge of French language and culture with the community,” said French Night founder and faculty advisor Maurice Louis. 

“As someone who takes French, I am really looking forward to French Night,” said sophomore Chloe Wantman. “I think even if you don’t take French, it’s still a very enjoyable experience, and definitely worth it to go.” 

For the first hour of French Night, students from elementary to high school perform exclusively in French. Afterward, “the audience enjoys a variety of famous French and Francophone foods, such as croissants, baguettes and crêpes,” said Louis. “All in all, French Night is an exceptional occasion for teachers and the public to celebrate students’ competence in French. It allows students to showcase their knowledge of French language and Francophone cultures to their teachers, peers and parents.” After 12 years of French Night, the event is still going strong and won’t be going away anytime soon. 

French Night is sponsored by many local businesses, and raises money for international causes such as safe drinking water, child education and women’s health.

Lizzie Idelson is a sophomore at Needham High School.

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