London is currently enjoying a wave of Parisian culture. We’re dining on macaroons, living in our Breton tops, and re-watching Breathless countless times. But the latest French import comes in a more risque form—you could even say hot-to-trot. This week marked the debut of Paris’ infamous Le Crazy Horse cabaret, lasting only a month at the secretive Supper Club in Notting Hill.
Those savvy enough to score an invitation to the Tuesday premiere were treated to dinner and erotic French burlesque just this side of salacious. Here’s how it went down—or came off, as it were. A glittering drag queen belting out Diamonds Are Forever kick-started the evening, followed by an impossibly flexible girl suspended on a revolving hoop. Then came strip teases galore, with ample peek-a-boo moments, naked flesh dashing between string curtains, and the performers campily, coyly miming along to pop classics. Though the girls were completely nude at times, light patterns on their bodies made staring at a harem of naked women for an hour seem less perverted.
The original show in Paris (which began in 1951) made the leap from seedy to glamorous with the help of Christian Louboutin, whose red-soled shoes are the one item of clothing that doesn’t come off. It’s one more detail that has earned Le Crazy Horse a cult following, with clientele such as Jean Paul Gaultier and Madonna, and celebrity performers such as Pamela Anderson, Carmen Electra, and Dita Von Teese.
The Supper Club’s red-carpet debut brought out the city’s, ahem, titeratti. They included rock royalty Ronnie Wood, still-mad hatter Philip Treacy, celebrity hairdresser Vidal Sassoon, Alice Dellal, Kings of Leon, Jacquetta Wheeler, Graham Norton, Julia Restoin Roitfeld, and Katy England.