A page turns for an emblem of Parisian nights: the cabaret Le Lido will give way to a “musical performance hall”, decided its buyer, the hotel giant Accor, thus signing the imminent end of feathered reviews.

The management of the Lido presented, Thursday, May 12, to the staff representatives “a reorganization project”, which will result in the disappearance of the permanent troop. She promises instead “the creation of a renewed musical theater program, as well as an overhaul of the dinner show and revue model.”

Created in 1946 by the Clérico family and famous for its house troupe, the Bluebell Girls, dancers dressed in feathers, the Lido has suffered greatly, like the whole sector, from closures linked to the health crisis: the turnover of cabarets dropped 80% in 2020.

The new project at the Lido aims to “give this Parisian hall its full place in the concert of the French, national and international creative scenes (…) thanks to an ambitious new artistic line”, announced the management in a press release.

A redundancy plan provides for “the elimination of 157 permanent positions” out of 184, “mainly within the room and artistic services”, accompanied by “reclassification and retraining measures” for employees, she detailed.

80 million euros in cumulative losses in ten years

This concerns in particular “about sixty people” from the “artistic plateau”, underlined a union source with Agence France-Presse (AFP), according to which the majority of employees of the Champs-Elysées cabaret are close to retirement . This project “will be done in agreement and in consultation with the social partners, there will be no storm”, assured this trade unionist to AFP. The artistic activities branch of the FO union will be “vigilant that the interests of employees are preserved”, assured the majority union at Lido to AFP, wishing that Accor “reclassify as many employees as possible”.

In December 2021, the French hotel giant Accor had bought the cabaret, which had been in deficit for years, from the collective catering group Sodexo, its owner since 2006. Sodexo had failed to relaunch the place, whose “cumulative losses amounted to 80 million euros over the past decade,” management said Thursday.

The Lido will now create original shows under the direction of Jean-Luc Choplin, former director of the Théâtre du Châtelet, who was also the programmer of La Seine musicale, according to concordant sources. Its management assured Thursday to provide “significant investments in the renovation of the facilities”.

In 2015, the establishment began its metamorphosis by modernizing its review under the leadership of Belgian director Franco Dragone, who had worked for Cirque du Soleil and organized spectacular shows, including that of Celine Dion in Las Vegas. However, this relaunch did not meet with the expected success.

In early December 2021, Sodexo announced it was divesting cabaret, a “separate portfolio activity” of its subsidiary Sodexo Live! which no longer “fit[ed] into its growth strategy”. The group had explained that they wanted to refocus Sodexo Live! on catering and services developed with the brands Lenôtre, Bateaux parisiens, Batobus and Yachts de Paris.