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Sleepless in Paris

They say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. So, it’s no wonder that Mayor Bertrand Delanoë paid an official visit to Paris’ sister city, Rome, last weekend for the launch of its first La Notte Bianca. Meanwhile, Paris gears up for its second La Nuit Blanche this coming Saturday, October 4th.

You may recall that last year on this night, the Mayor was stabbed at the Hôtel de Ville by a lunatic would-be assassin, but the festivities went on unencumbered. I was impressed by his decision to not create a panic and of the press who played it down so as not to instill fear. And that unfortunate mishap didn’t affect this year’s plans in the slightest…there are more than 100 official events taking place throughout the Capital.

For some nightly art history, the Musée du Louvre will be open till 11:45 p.m. with a musical presentation in the Cour Marly at 8 p.m., 9:30 p.m. and 11 p.m.

If what you want is to take in some of the “high-lights” (light shows) at this year’s sleepless night in Paris, here are a few of our picks:

At the Parvis de l’Hôtel de Ville, William Forsythe’s “City of Abstracts” video presentation and Gilbert Moity’s, Serge Labrunie and Benoît Vedrenne’s sound and light show, 8 p.m. to 7 a.m.

In the garden at the Bibliotèque Nationale de France (François Mitterand), Jan Kopp’s “J’affirme que la lune a une face cachée” (I affirm that the moon has a hidden face), Métro Quai de la Gare And on the northwest corner of the Bibliotèque Nationale de France (François Mitterand), Fabien Lerat’s “Dormir, par une nuit blanche,” Métro Quai de la Gare, 8 p.m. to 8 a.m.

On the roof of the Centre Morland, Véronique Joumard’s “Quatre ballons pur un immeuble,” Métro Sully-Morland, 9 p.m. to 5 a.m.

At the Viaduc d’Austerlitz, Ange Leccia’s “Nuit Blanche,” Métro Quai de la Rapée, 1:15 a.m. to 5 a.m.

All along the Canal Saint-Martin, from the Bassin de la Vilette to the lock at Faubourg du Temple, Yann Kersalé’s “A Blanc,” Métro Jaurès, Stalingrad, République, Goncourt, 8 p.m. to 7 a.m.

When your stomach is grumbling, the Flo brasseries — La Coupole, Les Grandes Marches, Flo, Terminus Nord, Vaudeville, Boeuf sur Toit, Bofinger, Balzar and Julien — are offering a 15 euro two-course menu from 12 midnight to 8 a.m.

So you won’t be stranded, the RATP has published a special “mini-plan” listing the all-night transportation, available at all principal Métro stations. The normal service runs until 12:30 a.m. starting up again from 5:30 a.m. The Noctambus lines will be more frequent than usual, from 10 to 20 minutes between 1 a.m. and 5:30 a.m. Line 14 from Madeleine to Bibliothèque will be functioning all during the night. Access is free from 1 a.m. to 5:30 a.m. with 5 specific bus lines operating connected to the stations of line 14 and the terminals of the Noctambus.

Get a good night’s sleep Friday night, so you won’t “poop-out” at midnight (like I did last year) and celebrate with the rest of Paris all night long.

A la prochaine…

Adrian Leeds
Editor, Parler Paris
E-mail: [email protected]

P.S. For complete information, the city has published a beautiful printed brochure listing all the activities that you can pick up at any Mairie. Or visit the site at or call 08 20 00 75 75


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