Thousands of people have gathered outside the Moulin Rouge cabaret on Sunday at night for fireworks and French can-can mega fest to commemorate the 130th year of the storied Montmartre institution.
Police restrained off the boulevard for the extravaganza, which started with music and a light show displayed onto the iconic red windmill, recalling the venue’s Belle Epoque origins.
A sole dancer then came on the roof, braving the autumn chill in one of the cabaret’s skimpy sequined dresses — though she was not without dress, possibly an indication to the families in the crowd.
Then, as fireworks went crazy overhead — red, generally, later laced with whites and blues — around 50 long-legged dancers spotting the same colors came our to deliver their famous can-can.
Yiftah Bar-Akiva, an Israeli who has stayed in Paris for 11 years, was drinking her champagne from a flute glass with mates who came for the party.
“It’s as legendary as the Eiffel Tower, it’s a big part of the history of the Belle Epoque,” he said.
“In my opinion, it is not in bad taste of women, I think it’s a Magnifique art,” he added. “It’s not like it’s a peepshow!”
Joanna Cavarzan came from her home, close to the city of Chartres, not far from Paris, with a friend, Joe McGinty, who has arrived from Toronto.
“I have never seen what’s inside, and I was hoping to get a peep of what it was like,” Cavarzan said.
But like others in the crowd, she could hardly spot the dancers — no stage had been set up on the boulevard for their show.
Debuting in 1889 — the same year as the Eiffel Tower was finished constructing — the Moulin Rouge has become a hot spot for millions of the tourists to the French capital, even only an outside look was allowed.