Review of Lido Cabaret in Paris

Iconic Parisian Glamour and Glitz

A dancer at Lido cabaret in Paris.
©2002 Lido de Paris.

An evening at Lido’s iconic Paris cabaret on the Champs-Elysées is like stepping into another era. The question that you might ask yourself over the course of the evening, however, is which one. This show is exceptionally glitzy and often times resembles an over-glorified drag show. But if you’ve got deep pockets and a sense of humor, you’re sure to enjoy this mix of French can-can, circus, magic and cabaret.

It's an updated and arguably more elegant cabaret than the more famous Moulin Rouge-- but not to worry, you'll still get plenty of extravagance for your money.

Location and Contact Information for Lido Cabaret

Lido is located in Western Paris on the famed Avenue des Champs-Elysées, in the city's 8th arrondissement.

Address: 116 Bis Avenue des Champs Élysées
Metro: George V (Line 1) or RER A, Charles de Gaulle-Etoile
Tel: Call +33 (0)1 40 76 56 10 for reservations (required)
Open: Daily from 9am to 2am. Dinner is served daily from 7pm; Champagne-revue from 9:30pm to 11:30 pm. On certain days, guests can also enjoy a lunch-revue (1pm or 3pm) or a champagne-revue at 3pm. Call or visit the official website for more information.
Reservations: Dinner and show at the Lido (Book direct via TripAdvisor)
The Lido giftshop is open daily from 7:oo pm to 2:00 am.

Prices:

For current prices, visit the website.

Review of the Show: The Welcome

After you pass through the front entry at Lido, you’ll be greeted immediately by a smiling, tuxedo- donning staff member, who will show you to your seat. Preferred seating is up front at long tables. Plush booths sit further back from the stage, but still offer a great view.

Plus, you’re less likely to have to crane your neck to the side during the show, as is, unfortunately, the case at the long tables.

Dinner at Lido

If you arrive for dinner, you can enjoy the six-piece jazz band and singer, who will accompany you through your meal with hits by Nina Simone and other classic artists. You’ll choose between several meal options of varying prices, with most offering an appetizer, main dish, dessert, half bottle of champagne or wine and coffee. Or, you can opt for the dessert or champagne-only option while you enjoy the show. The food and desserts are all very good, and the service is excellent and very attentive.

Let the Show Begin!

And then the show begins. The Lido cabaret is full of pomp and circumstance and starts off with a bang. A feather-coated egg hangs from the rafters before dipping down to the stage to reveal our singing host, wrapped in white feathery angel wings. She will continue to make appearances throughout the evening, each time to varying degrees of showiness, but always offering a quite impressive (live) singing voice.

A raft of rainbow-colored, feathered dancers then appear on the stage, for the first of many extravagant, sparkly and generally over-the-top performances.

Dancers twist, twirl and kick, sometimes topless or exposing their derrieres – but not necessarily. While the main dancer offers fairly impressive talents and charisma, it is not enough to offset the fact that most of the other dancers here are basic at best, stiff and awkward at worst. Still, with 23 different sets and 600 costumes, it’s hard to focus on a few lackluster shimmies and kicks.

The show continues, as dancers take on an incongruous mix of themes, spreading widely over different eras: Marilyn Monroe, Cats, Chicago, the fashion catwalk, the 1920s and classic French can-can. Culturally sensitive types may find the “Legendary India” number not only thematically confusing but mildly offensive, as it mixes Indian, Thai and Arabian costumes and music without discrimination. A very lifelike elephant even appears to finish off the Bollywood-esque number.

From here, Lido mixes several non-dance performances into the show – a spirited Diablo artist, an acrobat, a magician and an ice skater (who manages, though precariously, to stay within the tiny square he is given to skate on). At one point, a real horse comes running out with a red-capped monsieur riding atop. The moveable center stage also allows for a real fountain to rise ceremoniously out of the floor, making you constantly wonder what Lido is going to think up next.

Closing Time...and the Bottom Line

As the end of the show rolls around, you’ll probably have seen enough sparkle, leather, fur, mesh, leopard print and feathers to last you into the next century. If Lido is anything, it's lighthearted, and its goal is to entertain you at all costs. For this reason, no amount of glitter, color or flamboyancy is spared. Lido doesn’t take itself too seriously and you shouldn’t either. If you’re going to splurge on a night here, leave your pretensions at the door and just enjoy.