Crazy Horse Paris: Wiseman’s Docu

Celebrated documentary director Frederick Wiseman spent ten weeks with his camera exploring one of the most mythic places dedicated to women, the CRAZY HORSE PARIS.

This legendary Parisian cabaret, founded in 1951 by Alain Bernardin, has become over the years the Parisian nightlife ‘must’ for locals as well as any visitors, ranking alongside the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre.  Wiseman’s impeccable eye allows us to enter into this intriguing international temple of the Parisian cabaret world and to discover what makes the Crazy Horse tick: elegance, perfectionism and a grueling schedule (with 2 shows a night and 3 on Saturdays, 7 days a week).

The film follows the rehearsals and performances for a new show DÉSIRS staged by Philippe Decouflé, a celebrated French choreographer, as well as the backstage preparations of the dancers (make-up and costume fittings) and the various issues involved in the planning of the show and the administration of the cabaret. The show DÉSIRS is an artistic, modern, humorous and colorful spectacle that is the pinnacle of ‘nude chic’.




May 19, 1951: Alain Bernardin opens the Crazy Horse.   An avant-garde artist and passionate admirer of women, he was fascinated by the United States and driven by a single idea: to make artistic creation and women the focus of his cabaret.  At that time it featured a succession of racy burlesque routines interspersed with musical or humorous interludes from variety artists. 


In 2005, the Bernardin family decided to sell Crazy Horse.  A new team took over the company, headed by Andrée Deissenberg as Managing Director.  The new management saw Le Crazy as a legendary venue with its own special expertise. As Andrée Deissenberg said, “it was never a matter of revolutionizing Le Crazy, we just had to evolve it, awaken it, make it sparkle again”.


In Autumn 2008, the talented choreographer and dancer Philippe Decouflé was asked to expand the company’s repertoire.  This was the beginning of the show named DÉSIRS, which premiered on September 21, 2009 and is still running today.  Bringing a contemporary feel and a new tone, though still respecting the Crazy Horse Paris’ original canon.