Le Grand Rex

rex01.jpg

One of the largest movie theatres in Europe and the last one still open in Paris with the original auditorium, the Rex has history and character.

Built in 1932 by Auguste Bluysens, the Rex was subjected to much criticism at the time and its architect condemned for building a theatre that looked so out of place among the wide, tree-lined boulevards of Haussmann’s Paris (Haussmann being the civic planner commissioned by Napoleon III to redesign Paris).

In 1953, it was the first cinema in France to show films in cinemascope and, in 1981, it was listed as a historic monument.

This magnificent, atmospheric building dominates the street with its steeple-like turret, corner entrance and bold lettering. Inside, it is a sight to marvel at. The interior decoration has remained unchanged since the cinema first opened. Designed by Maurice Dufrene, it includes a bar of shaped mirrors.

American engineer John Eberson, who built almost 400 cinemas across the US during the 1920s, designed the vast space inside, including its most striking feature – an Arabian Nights-themed archway of midnight blue covered with a constellation of stars.

Still used as a cinema, its screen is probably the largest flat screen in Paris.

It can accommodate some 2,750 people over three levels.

If you will be one of those in attendance on 15 March – beneath the theatre’s enchanting, starry sky – do let us know. We hope you will have a fantastic evening in what is truly a magical setting.

Author: FEd

Features Editor of David Gilmour's official blog, The Blog ('Features' previously being its rather naff title), affectionately - or lazily - shortened to 'FEd'.

52 thoughts on “Le Grand Rex”

  1. These are all truly fantasitcally designed auditoriums. If possible, in one of your sooner photos of upcoming venues could you please post a photo of the Rosemont Auditorium as I cannot find a photo of the inside anywhere on the web and am truly curious as to the design. Also, looking at the history and acoustics, and intimacy of the venues David is playing I’m also curious as to why he didn’t book the Auditorium Theater in downtown Chicago based on its history and acoustical prowess.

  2. I will be at Le Grand Rex ! What you can’t see on this picture is the kind of arabians houses on each side of the theater. It is really surprising, the first time you go there.

    I already have seen some movies in this hudge auditorium , but I never have seen a concert, so I can’t tell about the sound’s quality.

    Anyway, it is a piece of Paris’ history.

  3. Hi !!!

    I’m a 20 y.o. huge fan of David ! Who said his audience was old ?

    I’ll be amongst the crowd on 15 March. Fifth row !

    I’m sure it’ll be a wonderful night spent with David and his musicians.

    See you in one month !

    PS : nice new Les Paul by the way 😉

  4. this Arabian Nights decor is the same as the historic Fox Theatre in Atlanta – where we hoped David would play. there, the starry sky changes during the course of the evening! the lucky ones attending this concert will be completely amazed, if it’s as fantastic as the Fox. beautiful venue!!!!

  5. Dear Ed,

    I’ll have the pleasure to be there at le Grand Red on March the 15th ! I’m 28 from Brussels, Belgium.

  6. Sounds a wonderful venue. I’ll be there, FE… and getting ever more excited about the tour and of course, David’s forthcoming album. Love the teasers on the home page, too.

    Keep up the excellent work everyone there, and have a great weekend.

  7. Ok Fet Ed,

    I repent… I apologize for whining about discussing ticket issues before the weekend. I expected it to have been the last entry til Sunday. At any rate… I won’t be at the venue in todays photo, but it looks like a really great place for a show. It made me think that in the States there are not that many venues like this left. Many have been torn down. Here in San Diego, Ca we used to have a place called the California Theater… I saw an artist named Kitaro perform there shortly before it was torn down… it was an amzing theater- very ornate architecture- and was the perfect setting for the show I saw (Kitaro performed his then new album “Kojiki”, an amazing instrumental album whose theme is the Japanese Creation myth). Anyway, it is a shame that so many of these grand, historic buildings are being demolished and replaced with very utilitarian structures. Its great to see David choosing venues that have an atmosphere. Can’t wait for the Gibson Theater on April 20th! By the way…. any pics of the Gibson forthcoming?

    Tim

    [No problem, Tim. We’ll cover every venue. I think there are nine to go. – Features Editor]

  8. hello, I’m so happy with your picture of the”Grand Rex”, I will be there on 15th march and also on 16th at the “Olympia” in Paris; no problem with tickets, no problem at all, just a great feeling of pleasure to see and hear M.Gilmour, I’m so proud he comes again in France, I saw him twice in 2002 in Paris at the “Palais des Congrès”, que de souvenirs!!!,he was so charming, often talking with us, simply, with much humour,so more intimate than with PF!

    If only I could speak english better, I miss the words…

    Welcome in France, M.Gilmour, thank you, and best wishes for all you want…
    Michèle.

  9. Glad to see we are finally giving the ticket situation a well deserved rest. What a gorgeous theatre to witness David and Co. at work. I wish I could be there, but I do have 10th row seats for Chicago on 4-12.

    Could you please give us some information about the rehearsals the guys must be into by now. How many hours a week are they practicing? Is Marc Brickman doing the lighting? Did they rent out a hall somewhere in London to perform rehearsals?

    Please give us a clue about how a major event like this gets coordinated. Thanks so much for your great web blog! Dave

  10. LOVE todays sound clip! Definitely sounds like David enjoyed himself immensely. 24 Days!!!! 🙂

    Lovely venue today too!

    Love ya, buh bye

  11. I live in Paris. I don’t have enough money to pay the show at the Grand Rex, but fortunately, I’ll come to the Olympia… 😉

  12. A challenge for Ed:

    Why not, from say 20 days before the album is released, do we not have a fact-per-day about the album that has not yet been made public.

    C’mon you know you want to!!! It can act as a nice countdown.

    I Like the colour shot in the Gallery. B & W certainly provides atmosphere and has an artistic edge but a few colour shots would be a brilliant contrast.

    Website is brilliant by the way.

  13. I shall indeed be attending Mr. Gilmour’s show at Le Grand Rex on the 15th March. The theatre looks great: I shall be sat somewhere in the never regions of ‘Balcon haut’. I’m wondering if Mr. Gilmour will play any songs in french as he did at his Royal Albert hall Shows as I believe that he’s fluent in the language (can this be confirmed by the delightful Features Editor).

    Anyhoo, To all those going, have fun et toute de sorte des choses. See you on the 15th.

    [I believe he most certainly is, Dom. – Features Editor]

  14. I think it is very cool that David has chosen to tour in theaters over the larger venues. More up close and personal. See you in Chicago David. I’m sure it will be a night I’ll never forget.

  15. I’m just curious, of the venues chosen here in the Los Angeles area, was the Hollywood Bowl ever considered for a show?? I’m quite confident selling out the Bowl would have been no problem.

  16. Hi!

    I will be there on the 15th March (as well as the 16th, in the Olympia).

    It seems to be a truely beautiful hall, let’s hope the sound will be as good as the shape!! (but i don’t worry, after seeing the Pete Cornish website and the section “Birth of a pedalboard”, the sound will be GREAT!!!)

    Thank you, Features Editor, for bringing us all these news, infos and pictures nearly every day for the last two months!

    Also, thank you David for spending two evenings in Paris!! and i hope these won’t be the last ones!!!

    See you 😉

    Ludo

  17. it looks and sounds wonderful. have a fab time everyone who will be there on 15 march. i hope you will tell us all about it!

  18. this bluesy theme reminds me of the Latin Playboys. very nice stuff. My tickets are for Massey Hall in Toronto…can’t wait!

  19. Last time I saw David Gilmour ( on a tour) it was in Paris, and next time that will be in Paris again…

    Le Grand Rex, strange feeling, more than 20 years ago while David GILMOUR was in le Zénith, in PARIS, I was with a band and they use to play in a kind of disco place, under the Grand Rex…Life is strange sometimes.

  20. Dear feature editors and Mr. Gilmour:

    If I sit back and close my eyes and can just only begin to imagine the concert. All of the theatre’s that Mr. Gilmour no doubt chose to perform in a spectacular to say the very least. They are exquisit just like Mr. Gilmour. Not only beautiful and breath-taking but appear to be ‘up and personal’. I would imagine this is the way that Mr. Gilmour intended..The man is beyond words and so are the wonderful venues all around the places that he will be touring. I can sit back and close my eyes and vision myself in one of those beautiful seats surrounded by breathtaking beauty not to mention the breath-taking sounds of Mr. Gilmour and all of the other artists that will be performing with him on this grand tour..Thank You again feature editors and to Mr. Gilmour.

    ps: Still no ‘luck’ with obtaining tickets to any shows here in the US & Canada. I never quit though that is and always will be my motto. Mr. Gilmour I ‘WILL’ be seeing one of your shows somewhere….Do I sound convincing yet? I am trying and i must admit you have to give me a ‘E’ for EFFORT. At least a ‘D’ for DREAMING!

    As always and with much respect:
    Linda Penner

  21. Waouhhh !!! I’ve just heard for the first time by the web on radio “q1043” from NY David’s new single “On an island” !!! What a guitar solo !! What a pity we cannot hear it in France… See you soon, David, twice in Paris…
    Michèle.

  22. Totally love the clip that I hear late Sunday night. This is more on the Floyd side. I will certainly be listening to my CD with my headphones on, risking hearing loss as I listen again and again, probably with incense and a glass of wine. Looking forward to it!

  23. I second Dave Hollingsed’s request for more behind-the-scenes tidbits. How about a guest blogger from the band/crew to give Feat. Ed. a day off every now and then? (Not that we don’t enjoy your infuriatingly vague teasing, F.E.)

    If Marc Brickman is to be involved with the shows, it will be interesting to see just what visual treats are in store.

  24. Nice picture of the theatre.

    I can’t wait for April 20th at the Gibson in Los Angeles.

    By the way On an Island is getting tons of airplay in Los Angeles 95.5 KLOS

  25. It’s killin me, but it seems that the version on the bbc website is the radio edit, i.e. no guitar solo (guessing). As such I am not listening to it, I want to hear that bad boy in its full glory.

    Now for something completely different…

    I feel it is our duty, nae privilge as we are in the know of what exactly GREAT music is. There are lots and lots of people out there who have never ever heard of David Gilmour, or even pink floyd. I went to 2 different music stores over the weekend there and tried to preorder the album. Both idiots at the counter had never heard of DG or PF, turns out its not on their preorder system yet…. So I put it to you … spread the word. This album & single MUST get to number 1 in the charts both sides of the pond. Do it for the sake of the kids man! Won’t anyone think of the kids! The Sh1te they are subject to today as an excuse for music is no longer tolerable, we must educate them now!! Sit em through Meddle/David Gilmour/DSOTM/About Face/WYWH/TDB etc etc…

  26. Beautiful theatre. Can’t wait for the show!!

    From what I have heard on the radio and trying to figure out lyrics. So many times albums refect/mirror the musicians current life and this one seems that way too. Dave is very happy and finally found peace and is completely happy. Enjoy Mr. Gilmour you deserve it.

  27. You definitely know how to get anxiety soaring.

    Yes, we’ll be there. Can’t wait.

    Ralph & Marit, Mortsel (Antwerp), Belgium

  28. Great suggestion by Dave Hollingsed. I’d love to hear those details myself. One request though, no information on WHAT is being rehearsed please. Personally speaking I love the suspense of NOT knowing a set list going into a show. Thanks and keep up the great work. Love the photos of all the venues.

  29. Hey Features Editor and David,

    Wow each time I log in to my computer your website automatically comes up and the first thing I hear is some music clips from OAI. So far what I’ve heard is great…haunting and beautiful, just what I love about the Gilmour sound. Really makes me anxious for the release date as I can’t wait to hear the whole thing. Thank you David, and I hope you always keep recording.

    A fan in St Louis who will see you in Chicago,

    Elizabeth

  30. Today’s sound clip is awesome – I thought I was hearing some rare sound clip of feedback from Jimi Hendrix at Woodstock for a second!! It’s good to be able to anticipate the upcoming balance of rocking tracks along side the more “pastoral” ones.

    By the way if you haven’t heard the 6:47 version of “On An Island” you’re in for a real treat! David’s inspired middle guitar solo is hacked to death on the “radio edit”. All in all this stands to be a new guitar solo classic in David’s quiver of oft mentioned gems – Comfy Numb, Time, Dogs, Shine On, etc. So tasty, lyrical, and unique, it’s almost too painful to take it in!! Nobody, but nobody, sounds like him, or ever will!

    …and I humbly re-submit that I will be hearing the entire “On An Island” disc on Thursday 2/16! Somehow the rock gods have smiled on me, as I am one of the 10 winners of the SonyBMG contest to win glorious access to the listening party in L.A. I hope hope I don’t pass out half way through, as I expect to be totally overwhelmed by the experience! What an honor!!

    Thank you again for the daily gift of this blog, courtesy of David, his amazing staff, and in particular his wonderful Feature Editor!

    Cheers!

    tom from san diego

  31. I’m a 21 year old fanatic of David. I was fortunate enough to score tickets to his US show @ Radio City on the 5th even though tix sold out in 60 seconds!! I am more than overjoyed to witness this performance…At my young age, I was unfortunately unable to really start to appreciate PF at a younger age, though David being my favorite band member, this is considered to be a miracle for me. And Rick W. as an added bonus??!! Wow…I must say these venues are breathtaking and I am impressed by the locations you’ve chosen for your upcoming memorable shows.

    I’ll be checking back daily, take care David, everyone!

    ~ Mike

  32. For the first time in my life, I want to be a Brit. Then I could turn on radio 2 to hear David with his band. By any chance, would there be plans to re-broadcast the BBC concert here in the United States? (NPR likes to broadcast stuff from the BBC, nod nod, wink wink…)

    [If so, we’ll let you know, Dan. – Features Editor]

  33. Todays clip f*cking rocks, David. I cant wait for the album, hah nevermind waiting for April 4th. Yeeaaaaaa guy

  34. Agree with Ripper we need to promote David more. My music store is not ordering album on spec, only on order and I will not get it until 8th or 9th March. I dont live out in the outback, unless you call Caithness North of Scotland remote, we have 25,000 people. Thats 25,000 who could pop into a shop and pick up “On an island” but cant. Shame

    Ian

  35. I also will be in the Grang Rex concert, and I’m very delighted to see my favorite musician for the 5th time (after 1988 Versailles, 1989 & 2002 Paris, 1994 Chantilly).

    The single “On an island” is simply and purely excellent and wonderful !

    I saw my other favorite musician Mike Oldfield in the Grand Rex and the sound is very good in it.

  36. To-day, in France, it’s “la saint Valentin”, the lover’s day, I don’t know if it’s so in England, but I wish David and Polly a happy “st Valentin” celebration day!

    Have a nice day you also, dear Ed….
    michèle.

    [Thank you! The same to you. – Features Editor]

  37. Hi,

    … unfortunately, I can’t see David au Grand Rex, but, don’t you know, the Olympia hall is a nice place too… See you, on 16 March…

    And, good Saint Valentin to all of you!!!

    Ikkar, with love

    [The same to you, Ikkar. – Features Editor]

  38. Tom in San Diego… congrats dude! I’m sure the listening party will be a blast! I gotta admit though… I’m looking forward to sitting with a pair of headphones on to hear it for the first time… I want to hear every detail (course I wouldn’t turn them down if I got picked to go to the listening party!!!). By the way, my wife and I hope to catch Pink Froyd next time you play in San Diego! I keep hearing you guys put on a great show!

    Tim

  39. Did David pick these smaller venues just because they were intimate or was it because they all look so splendid? (and I thought it was the others in Floyd who were the architecture students!) Now I just wonder if you can manage to do a feature on The Bridgewater Hall without mentioning the fact that it is built on “springs” to dampen down the vibrations from passing trams!

  40. this is john in liverpool and i am going to the gig at the grand rex…flying in in the morning and leaving the next day..and im bringing my girlfriend along to educate her in some dave(live)….looks a great venue…come on ed…give us some teasers of the set-list..you know you want to….see you all there row 5..by the way

  41. Dear Mr. Gilmour,

    My fingers are shivering as this is the first time I have the opportunity to communicate with you, even if on an indirect way. (I apologise for my poor English) I am 31, and I was 19 when I first heard Pink Floyd on the radio, namely “What do you want from me?”, followed by “Keep talking”. I had never heard such wonderful music before, it was so very different and better than everything else I had heard before. So I bought TDB and immediately loved it from the very first to the very last second. Later I discovered all other great PF albums, my favourite one being Meddle, which contains One of these days and Echoes, in my opinion the best two musical pieces ever.

    It’s hard to explain how your guitar playing affects me, listening to it is a spiritual experience, not to say near-death experience. It can make me smile, it can make me cry, it can make me sweat.

    My biggest regret in life is to have been unable to see you and your band during the Division Bell tour. On the 15th March, you’ll be so kind to give thousand of fans the possibility to enjoy your music at Le Grand Rex, and I am so lucky to be one of them. I’m taking a friend with me, secretely hoping she’ll become a fan of you and of PF. I’ll be sitting on the first row of the mezzanine, which should ensure me a nice view. I am sure your show will go beyond all my expectations and I enjoy every minute of the waiting until the show.

    Once again, Mr Gilmour, thank you for all the happiness you have given and will give to me and to millions of music lovers around the world.

    Thanks to you as well, dear Features Editor, for all the hard work related to this website, and for allowing us to share our experience with David.

    Vincent from Brussels

  42. Wonderful place!

    In Rome we’re waiting for David and the band at the “Auditorium”.

    Do you think next 26 of march Mr Gilmour is going to arrange a press conference?

    Thank you!
    diana

  43. I`m so excited about david`s new album coming out soon,.Also the tour.As of right now,I don`t have tickets to the new york shows but I`m working on it.I saw floyd in 87 and 94 a couple of times, and it was the best time. David is my favorite musician in the world, and I can only pray that I get tickets.So good luck to everyone out there getting to see the show.

  44. Je serais également au concert de David Gilmour le 15 mars au Rex Club mon rêve serait de pouvoir écouter Take it back .
    Rendez vous tous le 15 pour une soirée de fou.

  45. Can anyone here tell me whether the new album will be available to buy in download form(mp3)? Living on an island does have its drawbacks – it’s very difficult here in the Caribbean to get music via music stores (there aren’t any!) or via post (takes about four months to get anything sent here). I notice that itunes don’t have any of David’s albums (shamefully)….think I might move to the mainland!

    [I’ll find out for you, David. Please bear with me. – Features Editor]

  46. bien sûr que j’y serai au Grand Rex le 15 mars !!!

    j’attend avec impatience le 6 mars,date de la sortie de son album en france

  47. Hi all,

    Mark here from Dublin. I am delighted to say I will be in Paris on the 15th. A dream come true to see David live. Would anyone object if I brought my “in the Flesh” T-shirt?????

  48. ça y’est!!! j’ai commandé “ON AN ISLAND” et je devrais le recevoir en avant premiére le 3 mars!

    J’ai pu apprecié la mélodie de “on an island” sur RADIO BBC2: que du bonheur.

    Le programme est simple, du 3 au 15 mars :écoute du nouvel album en boucle et le 15 au soir : je retrouve DAVID GILMOUR à Paris(pour la 3eme fois) pour 2 heures de pur bonheur!

    Pascal.

  49. Hi there people!

    I will be in Paris to see this man…Mister Dave!

    I’m from portugal and i’m so proud to can see him with my eyes!! It’s almost like a dream!! Thank you Dave for this album and for this shows!!

    Rui Gomes

  50. Hi there.

    I will be there on the 15 March to see Dave. Me & the wife coming all the way from South Africa.

    See you guys soon.

  51. My friend and I are coming from the U.S. just for this show. Thankfully, I entered my confirmation number into the ticketing system today to re-confirm and found out that my tickets are not for the Olympia on the 16th, but for Le Grand Rex on the 15th. What a sad night that would have been on Thursday on the outside looking in and finding out that we missed the show a day earlier ! There’s no way I would admit that to anyone back in the States. I would never live it down after all I have talked it up.

    Looking forward to the show. Enjoy. RD

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