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Theatre / Crazy Horse

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Le Crazy Horse de Paris, formerly Le Crazy Horse Saloon, is a Parisian cabaret famous for its stage shows performed by female dancers in the nude with suggestive songs and creative stage lighting, and for its stage magic and variety numbers between each nude number (singers like Charles Aznavour performed there before becoming successful). It was founded by Alain Bernardin in 1951 at 12 Avenue George-V, in the 8th arrondissement of Paris.

Many of the songs that are staples and trademarks of the cabaret's numbers were composed and written by Jacques Morali (1947-1991), the disco record producer and songwriter who wrote songs for The Ritchie Family and the Village People.

The company has expanded a bit since, producing shows in places such as the MGM Grand in Las Vegas and (for a short period of time) in Singapore.

The Crazy Horse shows provide examples of:

  • All Women Are Lustful: Most of the songs are loaded with Intercourse with You, but there are subversions like "Baby Buns", where a girl complains about being followed everywhere and lusted after.
  • Artifact Title: The cabaret had The Wild West as theming originally back in the 1950s, including the Native American name that remained despite the changes.
  • Body Paint: In some numbers, the dancers are completely naked (i.e. not even a G-string) and paint a black band on their intimate parts so nothing will be visible there.
  • British Royal Guards: The shows' traditional opening number: female dancers wearing stripperiffic British Royal Guards uniforms with white gloves, furry hats, spaulders, garters and boots and nothing else, with a choregraphy based on the Changing of the Guard. It was also recreated from the dancers' homes during the first COVID-19 Pandemic lockdowns to celebrate the cabaret's 69th anniversary in 2020.
  • Burlesque:
  • Cover Version: One of the numbers, "Upside Down", uses a slower and more moody cover of "Toxic" by Yael Naim as soundtrack.
  • Curtain Call: "You Turn Me On" closes the shows, and it's usually performed by all the dancers that took part to the show that day.
  • Distaff Counterpart: The number "Monsieur Jules", launched in 2016, has male dancers, for the first time in the cabaret's long history.
  • Every Episode Ending: Every show ends with the pole dance number "You Turn Me On".
  • Everything Sounds Sexier in French: Many of the songs have English lyrics, but they're peppered with French words for precisely this effect.
  • Gay Paree: The cabaret itself is of the symbols of festive and glamorous Parisian nights. Comes with most clichés associated to them in some songs.
  • Gold Digger:
    • The number and song "I am a good girl" imply this.
      "Darling, what did you do for those pearls?"
      "WHAT?! I am a good girl!"
    • The same with the English spoken lyrics of "You Turn Me On".
  • Hotter and Sexier: The original intent of Alain Bernardin, going further in the nude spectacle department than the other Parisian cabarets, and it's safe to say he succeeded.
  • The Immodest Orgasm: Expect to hear at least one in some of the songs.
  • Intercourse with You: Many of the songs are just about this.
  • Ms. Fanservice: The dancers, of course. It's the raison d'être of this cabaret.
  • Punny Name: Per this cabaret's tradition, dancers have suggestive Stage Names such as Lova Moor, Polly Underground or Trauma Tease.
  • Sex for Services: One of the spoken English lyrics of "You Turn Me On" goes like this:
    "After all, sex is fun but it doesn't pay the rent... Well, not all the time."
  • Sexy Silhouette: Some numbers are solely based on silhouettes, or feature them before the dancers show up under the spotlights.
  • Shout-Out: The German spoken lyrics of "You Turn Me On" include "Ich bin von Kopf bis Fuß auf Liebe eingestellt" (literally "I am, from head to toe, ready for love", which goes by the title "Falling in Love Again" in English otherwise), which was famously sung by Marlene Dietrich in The Blue Angel.
  • Special Guest: Starting with Dita von Teese in 2006 (she came back in 2016), the cabaret periodically invites a celebrity to perform in the shows. The list includes the likes of Pamela Anderson, Arielle Dombasle, Clotilde Courau, Conchita Wurst and Viktoria Modesta.