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Théâtre de la Gaîté-Montparnasse

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(detail)1868 | opening


The Concert de la Gaîté-Montparnasse theatre was created in 1867. The soft drinks manufacturer, François Jamin, salvaged materials from the demolition of the Théâtre de l’Exposition in 1867 to construct a "café-concert" which he located in the very popular rue de la Gaîté. The concert hall opened its doors in September 1868. Its entrance was situated at 67 chaussée du Maine, before a public entrance was opened on the rue de la Gaîté. The Concert de la Gaîté-Montparnasse was very popular. In 1945, Agnès Capri, a renegade from the Jouvet and Pitoëff companies and Charles Dullins former student, rented the Gaîté and installed an authentic and modern theatre there which hosted sketches, singing acts, parodies and poem recitals of texts by Alphonse Allais, Courteline, Apollinaire, Prévert, Desnos, Jean Tardieu. In 1949, Madame Dorfeuil, bringing about the end of 62 years of family ownership, let the theatre to Thanos and Christine Tzingos who also went into partnership with Roger Blin. Several plays were scheduled there, in particular 'L’épouse injustement soupçonnée' written by Jean Cocteau, directed by Sacha Pitoëff.Michel Fagadau renovated the concert hall. He remained the director associated with the theatre for 37 years until 1995. In the first two years, Michel Fagadau and Michel Vitold managed the theatre and the first shows that they scheduled were a big success, particuarly 'Douze hommes en colère' in 1958 and 'Bon week-end M. Benett' with Denise Grey in 1959. In March 1978, Michel Fagadau entrusted J. Sandor and then Daniel Colling with the theatre scheduling. Nicole Charmant took over the direction of the theatre, refurbished the auditorium and changed and reduced the number of seats. In 1988 and 1995, the theatre was threatened to be demolished. In 1998, it was taken over by Louis-Michel Colla who still manages it. In 2003, all the seats were replaced, the auditorium was completely refurbished and it regained all its prestige.


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