Philippe Decouflé

Likes new challenges

A choreographer impossible to categorize, Philippe Decouflé is a man who enjoys new challenges.

After having successfully directed the opening and closing ceremonies of the Olympic Games in Albertville, as well as those of the Rugby Union World Cup in 2007, the legendary Crazy Horse Paris offers him a new stylistic challenge.

It is not an easy one to take up: new acts are to be created in which women, and in particular, the women of the legendary cabaret, the sublime Crazy Girls, in all their wondrous and mysterious beauty, are to be glorified.

And all this, in a magical setting where strict aesthetic codes and principles are to be respected, in a confined, intimate and historical stage and in the heart of the Golden Triangle in Paris.

At age 50, he picks up the task there where other great artists have left it and who have illuminated with their work the formidable Parisian institution, which was founded by Alain Bernardin in 1951.

Philippe Decouflé, Production Director of the show

Between tradition and modernity

In 2008, as Director of the new Crazy Horse show he starts creating new numbers within the framework laid down and strategy set forth by the group’s new managerial staff and under the impetus given by Andrée Deissenberg, General Manager Creation and Development.

In 2007, after having transformed the cabaret into a modifiable and more intimate venue, the Crazy Horse Paris wants to renew its historic repertoire, by putting artistic creation back on center stage.

« I have always been attracted by the style and precision of this house and am much honored to be able to be a part of it. I would like to add a touch of modernity, humor and geniality, whilst still adhering to the codes and principles set forth by its founder, Alain Bernadin.”, Philippe Decouflé explains.

Alain Bernardin’s take on beauty

Skillfully making the best of the small, but intimate stage, the choreographer deftly uses light, forms, color and music to create acts that enhance and highlight the heavenly Crazy Girls and their gorgeous bodies…

« The stage is very compact, the formatted bodies of the dancers are wearing makeup and the whole difficulty consists in trying to produce an entirely novel creation, while at the same time preserving Alain Bernardin’s take on beauty. The Crazy codes of aesthetics are not only essential, but also need to be ferociously kept intact by those who would be the guardians of this sanctuary”, the artist pursues.

Producing the « Désirs » show

The first number he created is called « Upside Down », a play of lights and mirrors, poetic, yet disconcerting and performed to a tune by Yaël Naim called “Toxic”; and the artist-director keeps them coming. Every evening a new act is tried out and rehearsed on stage.

On the 15th of September, 2009, 15 years after the demise of its founder, the Crazy Horse Paris, inaugurates its new show, Désirs, composed of both new acts created by Philippe Decouflé and also ones from the historic repertoire of the legendary Parisian cabaret.

Choreographer, dancer and director

Born in Paris in 1961, Philippe Decouflé is a choreographer, director and dancer. He founded his company DCA (Decouflé Company of Arts) in 1983, before moving it ten years later to Saint-Denis. His shows are seen both in France and abroad and he actively pursues his career in contemporary dance, movies and commercials.

After his « Mêlée des Mondes », a grand parade held for the 2007 Rugby Union World Cup in the streets of Saint-Denis, he went on tour with « Solo » and later “Coeurs Croisés” in which he explores the burlesque.

End of 2008, he presented « Sombreros » at the Theatre National de Chaillot in Paris. Always looking for new challenges and projects, Philippe Decouflé is working on a show for the Cirque du Soleil that is to open on Broadway in 2016.

DID YOU KNOW THAT... ?

  • Fifi Chachnil signe la tenue de la PDGère dans « Crisis ! What Crisis ? »

  • The cabaret is considered a national monument in France. It is a cultural phenomenon and part of the national heritage.

  • Hilton McConnico a crée la première affiche du spectacle “Désirs” en 2009.

  • La voix féminine sur la bande son du numéro “Spoutnik” appartient à la danseuse Fiamma Rosa.

  • Christian Louboutin a dessiné les souliers d’une majorité de tableaux dont « Teasing », « Rougir de Désir » et « Upside Down ».

  • At least six pairs of shoes are tailor made for each dancer.

  • Le nom du cabaret parisien est en hommage au chef Sioux Crazy Horse.

  • All dancers are classically trained. It takes three to five month of hard work to transform a classical dancer into a Crazy Girl.

  • Poupie Cadolle a crée les corsets de « Red Shoes ».

  • Chaque danseuse est baptisée d’un nom de scène lors de son entrée au Crazy Horse.

  • 300 “Crazy Red” lipsticks are used each year by Crazy Horse Paris’ dancers.

  • Chaque année, les danseuses du Crazy Horse utilisent 250 paires de bas, 500 litres de maquillage et 300 tubes de rouge « Crazy ».

  • Crazy Horse Paris was founded by Alain Bernardin in 1951 and has been an illustrious cabaret ever since.

  • Internationally acclaimed corsetiere Poupie Cadolle, whose grandmother invented the bra, designed the corsets for « Red Shoes ».

  • Deux danseuses du Crazy Horse ont été les modèles pour David Lynch pour son projet « Fetish », en collaboration avec Christian Louboutin.

  • Two Crazy Girls modelled for David Lynch’s “Fetish” photo series

  • La 1ère Guest Star dans l’histoire du Crazy Horse est Dita Von Teese en octobre 2006.

  • Inauguré le 21 septembre 2009, le show “Désirs” est signé Philippe Decouflé et Ali Mahdavi.

  • More than 30 dancers currently work with Crazy Horse Paris.

  • Celebrity shoe creator Christian Louboutin designed the red-soled shoes for many acts including “Teasing”, “Rougir de Désirs” and “Upside Down”.