Le Lido

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Le Lido
Le Lido.jpg
Address116 Avenue des Champs-Élysées
Coordinates48°52′20.50″N 2°18′2.02″E / 48.8723611°N 2.3005611°E / 48.8723611; 2.3005611Coordinates: 48°52′20.50″N 2°18′2.02″E / 48.8723611°N 2.3005611°E / 48.8723611; 2.3005611
OpenedJune 20th 1946,[1] current location since 1977
ArchitectPeynet, Bartoccini and Veccia

Le Lido is a cabaret and burlesque show located on the Champs-Élysées in Paris, France. It opened in 1946 at 78 Avenue des ChampsÉlysée and moved to its current location in 1977. It is known for its exotic shows including dancers, singers, and other performers. Famous names have performed there including: Edith Piaf, Siegfried and Roy,[2] Sylvie Vartan, Ray Vasquez, Renee Victor, Johnny Hallyday, Maurice Chevalier, Marlene Dietrich, Eartha Kitt, Josephine Baker, Kessler Twins, Elton John, Laurel & Hardy, Dalida, Shirley MacLaine,[3] Mitzi Gaynor, Juliet Prowse and Noël Coward.


Founded by Joseph and Louis Clérico, Le Lido opened on June 20, 1946. Le Lido was preceded by an artificial beach in a townhouse basement in the 1920s, running as a nightclub/casino in the late night hours.

In 1955, after a visit by the entertainment director of the Stardust Resort and Casino, Las Vegas, the Clérico brothers along with Donn Arden brought the Lido to the Stardust Las Vegas. This started a series of imports of Parisian cabaret shows to Las Vegas: Folies Bergère to the Tropicana, Nouvelle Eve to Hotel El Rancho Vegas and Casino de Paris to the Dunes.[4] The Stardust edition of Le Lido closed in 1992.

Le Lido moved in 1977 to the Normandie on the Champs-Élysées.

In 2006, Sodexo, the international food service company, purchased Le Lido and has invested 24 million euro into developing its current show.[5]


The Lido was closed from December 2, 2014, to April 2, 2015, while a new version of the show was prepared.[6] The new version was developed by Franco Dragone. Each version of Le Lido is made up of 10–20 scenes and runs for about an hour and a half. Two shows are run every day of the week. A pre-show dinner, featuring a robotic orchestra, is offered with the first evening show of each day at an additional cost.

In spring 2015, Franco Dragone created a new show for Le Lido titled Paris Merveilles.[7]

Each Le Lido show features singers and dancers, which always include the famous Bluebell Girls.[8] A few featured dancers, showgirls and lead singers may be added. The Lido is known for its spectacular costumes featuring thousands of dollars in feathers and rhinestones, rich fabrics, and top quality furs.

The opening or "theme" scene welcomes the audience and sets the tone for the evening. It may also set the colour scheme for the show and will feature special effects and lighting. Music may be original or a medley of current popular songs mixed with music from Broadway or Hollywood films; often the opening number is a potpourri of styles and performers may change costumes several times. Between the production numbers, specialty "vaudeville/cabaret" acts are featured, such as jugglers, acrobats or magicians. At least one scene will feature water effects – another thing the Lido is known for. The stage itself can be raised and lowered, may change back and forth into an ice rink or swimming pool, and can feature elaborate set pieces which come up from below. The closing number often features a number called "Merci Beaucoup" (featured in the television show Shirley Maclaine at The Lido de Paris) and usually has some particularly spectacular costumes.

Among the last of its kind, the Lido has a special place in the history of nightclubs and floorshows and continues a tradition of the "naughty but nice" opulent production shows originally started by the Folies Bergère.

Bluebell Girls[edit]

Kelly with the Bluebell Girls in 1948

Founded by Margaret Kelly, also known as Miss Bluebell, the dancers of the Lido are known as the Bluebell Girls. Until her retirement in 1986, each dancer was selected by Kelly. The dancers were afterwards under the direction of Pierre Rambert until his retirement in December 2014.[8] According to Forbes, they are "some of the world’s most beautiful and talented burlesque dancers".[9] The cast comes from all over the world, and are noted for their statuesque height, averaging 5' 11".

Production history[edit]

Every few years, Le Lido develops a new version of its show. The show used to change more frequently, now each iteration may run for several years until the management feels it has run its course and a new production is called for. Each show can take millions of dollars to develop. The following are the titles of each show produced by the Le Lido:[10]

  • 1946 – Sans Rimes Ni Raisons
  • 1946 – Mississippi
  • 1947 – Made in Paris
  • 1948 – Confetti
  • 1949 – Bravo
  • 1950 – Enchantment
  • 1951 – Rendez-vous
  • 1953 – Voilà
  • 1954 – Desirs
  • 1955 – Voulez-vous
  • 1956 – C'est Magnifique
  • 1957 – Prestige
  • 1959 – Avec Plaisir
  • 1961 – Pour Vous
  • 1962 – Suivez-Moi
  • 1964 – Quelle Nuit
  • 1966 – Pourquoi Pas?
  • 1969 – Grand Prix
  • 1971 – Bonjour La Nuit
  • 1972 – Grand Jeu
  • 1977 – Allez Lido
  • 1981 – Cocorico
  • 1985 – Panache
  • 1990 – Bravissimo
  • 1994 – C'est Magique
  • 2003 – Bonheur (closed December 2, 2014)
  • 2015 – Paris Merveilles (Paris Wonders)[11]

Media featuring Le Lido[edit]

Shirley Maclaine at the Lido (1979) produced by Gary Smith and Dwight Hemion – Nominated for a Primetime Emmy for Outstanding Comedy-Variety or Music Program.[3]

The Bluebell Girls were featured in a 1960 episode of Close-Up, a Canadian TV show broadcast on the CBC[12][13]

Numerous clips of several of the shows of the last 20 years and even full videos of all the production numbers from some editions are available on YouTube.[14][15][16]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "The Founders". Lido.fr. Le Lido. Retrieved 29 December 2014.
  2. ^ "Siegfried and Roy at Lido de Paris". Youtube. Youtube. Retrieved 30 December 2014.
  3. ^ a b "Shirley Maclaine at the Lido". IMDB. Amazon.com inc. Retrieved 30 December 2014.
  4. ^ "Lido at the Stardust". Digital Collections at UNLV. UNLV.
  5. ^ "SODEXO INVESTIT 25 MILLIONS DANS LA REFONTE DU LIDO". Hospitality on think tank. Archived from the original on 2014-12-30.
  6. ^ "Lido". Le Lido. Le Lido. Retrieved 30 December 2014.
  7. ^ http://www.lesoir.be/674814/article/actualite/fil-info/fil-info-styles/2014-10-08/spectacle-du-lido-mis-en-scene-par-dragone-debutera-au-printemps-20
  8. ^ a b Gentlemen, Amelia. "Founder of Bluebell Girls dies at 94". The Guardian. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved 29 December 2014.
  9. ^ Hossenally, Rooksana (2016-09-26). "5 Things to do When Visiting the Champs Elysées in Paris". Forbes. Retrieved 2017-10-22.
  10. ^ "Former Shows". Le Lido. Le Lido. Retrieved 29 December 2014.
  11. ^ "Spectacle". Le Lido. Retrieved 4 August 2015.
  12. ^ http://www.cbc.ca/archives/entry/close-up-goes-to-france
  13. ^ http://www.cbc.ca/player/play/1869406343
  14. ^ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3r6iOIP2eeY
  15. ^ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7M5OzbgghV4
  16. ^ https://www.youtube.com/user/LeLidoDeParis/videos

External links[edit]