Archive for February 9th, 2021

February 9, 2021

Louis de Funés!!!!

Ok this is on my black and white series as do not like to put up external pictures other than mines. I like to tell you thus about one of the best actor/comedian of France. My hommage to Louis de Funés, an actor I have followed since my early infant years ! Hope you enjoy a bit of the 7th art phenomenon which I dwell on my blog once in a while. Again for those in the know ,no further title is needed, this is Louis de Funés!

This will be done in two parts, the first on himself and the second on his property. Hope you enjoy as I

Louis de Funès, his full name Louis de Funès de Galarza, is a French actor born July 31, 1914 in Courbevoie (92) and died January 27, 1983 in Nantes (44). He is buried in the town of Cellier (44) cemetery, his tomb facing the garden of his castle. A fervent Catholic, Louis de Funès was very practicing and had, according to his confessor, “a deep faith”.   His political ideas are close to those of Gaullism. With artists like Brigitte Bardot and Alain Delon, he is one of the actors calling to vote for Valéry Giscard d’Estaing during the presidential election.

Louis de Funès comes from a Castilian (Spain) family on the side of his father, Carlos Luis de Funes de Galarza . His mother Leonor Soto Reguera comes from a middle-class family, her own father being a great lawyer from Madrid. The two lovers arrived in France from Spain in 1904 after Carlos kidnapped Leonor, whose parents initially opposed their union. Louis is their third child, the two eldest being Marie (Maria Teolinda Leonor Margarita), and Charles (Carlos Teolindo Javier ), a soldier in the 152nd infantry regiment, died for France cut down by a Nazi machine gun in 1940.

Louis de Funés having played in more than one hundred and forty films, he is one of the most famous comic actors of French cinema of the second half of the 20C and achieves the best results of French cinema, from the 1960s to the beginning of the 1980s. also the best television audiences. Very little rewarded, he received however an honorary César for his entire career in 1980.

In 1942, at the age of 28, he decided to become an actor, and enrolled in Cours Simon, passing his entrance exam with a performance of a scene from Molière’s Fourberies de Scapin. Even though he only made a short stint there, he ran into other apprentice actors in the course, such as Daniel Gélin, which allowed him to debut later in Marc-Gilbert Sauvajon’s play L’Amant de Paille. In 1945, again thanks to Daniel Gélin, whom de Funès nicknamed “Ma Chance” when he met him, he made his film debut, aged over thirty, in La Tentation de Barbizon, by Jean Stelli. In the small role of the porter of the cabaret Le Paradis, he delivers his first line on the screen when he sees a client who tries to pass through a closed door.  It was in the 1950s that he became known to the public belatedly with La Traversée de Paris (1956), his first leading roles and the triumph at the Théâtre d’Oscar. In the two decades that followed, you found him in a series of popular successes, among which: Pouic-Pouic (1963), Le Gendarme de Saint-Tropez (1964) and its five suites, the Fantômas trilogy !!! (my favorites!!) (1964 to 1967), Le Corniaud (1965), Le Grand Restaurant and La Grande Vadrouille (1966), Oscar and Les Grandes Vacances (1967), Le Petit Baigneur (1968), Hibernatus (1969), Jo and La Folie des grandeurs (1971), Les Aventures by Rabbi Jacob (1973), L’Aile ou la Cuisse (1976), La Zizanie (1978) and La Soupe aux choux (1981). He also participated in the writing of some scripts for his films and co-directed L’Avare with Jean Girault in 1980.

In addition to France, Louis de Funès’ films were very popular when they were released in several European countries, such as Italy, the United Kingdom and Germany, but also the USSR and its area of influence in Eastern Europe and Cuba! (my first views of Fantômas films!) Despite his European success, Louis de Funès remained relatively unknown in the United States until 1973-1974 and his famous Adventures of Rabbi Jacob, nominated for a Golden Globe for best foreign film in 1975.

The Château de Clermont, built between 1643 and 1649, is a castle located in the town of Cellier, in the department 44 of the Loire-Atlantique, and region of Pays de la Loire. This castle is known to have been the property of the actor Louis de Funès, of which it was the last residence until the death of the actor in 1983. From 2014 to 2016, the orangerie of the castle accommodated the “museum of Louis” , dedicated to the actor. created by a local association to maintain the memory and work of Louis de Funès. Unable to acquire, for lack of subsidies, the walls of the premises it occupies, which their owner wishes to sell, the museum must close its doors on October 30, 2016.

The Château de Clermont occupies the site of the former monastery of Mont-Clair, destroyed by the Normans in 845. The current building was built by René Chenu, Lord of Lendormière, Clermont, Saint Philbert, from 1643 to 1649 , the day after Rocroy’s victory (May 19, 1643), where the one who would later be called the “Grand Condé” and who only bore the title of Duke d’Enghien, saved the throne of Louis XIV , as a child and for which he owed an immense favor. It reflects the enthusiasm of a time filled with glory. This family of great military administrators added to its name that of this land. Clermont remained in the descendants of the Chenu for two centuries.

During the French revolution, the Château de Clermont was sequestered and occupied for a time by Republican troops. After the revolution, Louis Marie Juchault des Jamonières, son of Rosalie de La Bourdonnaye, herself sister of Charles Bertrand de La Bourdonnaye, manages to regain possession. In 1814, he received the title of Baron of the Empire. The castle passes to the Nau de Maupassant family (1860-1963) without any known family link with the writer Guy de Maupassant.

The entire estate was finally put up for auction on January 25, 1967. Having become a great star, and then in full commercial success of La Grande Vadrouille, Louis de Funès decided to acquire it to return the castle of his childhood to his wife. who lived with him her years of hardship when she came from a bourgeois background. The actor sells his country house in Saint-Clair-sur-Epte and his summer apartment in Hyères . He leaves his wife to take care of the catering and instead devotes himself to the 25 hectares of parks and gardens surrounding as he was passionate about botany, the actor maintains a rose garden there.He prohibits hunting on his land and practices organic farming on his crops. From 1976, after his double heart attack, Louis de Funès also selles his Parisian apartment in Parc Monceau, to live only in the castle. He resides there until his death, which occurred at the Nantes hospital in 1983.

His sons , Patrick and Olivier de Funès, returned regularly to the Nantes region until the death of their mother in 2015, at the age of 101, followed by the closure, in 2016, of the Louis museum of which they were administrators.

The Château de Clermont had at this time had 30 rooms, 365 windows, large outbuildings and a 30 hectare park. His family could not maintain such a building, sold it in 1986 to the Association for the Development of Alternatives to Hospitalization (ADAH). However, the ADAH, faced with financial problems, must resolve to separate from Clermont, who was finally bought in 2005 by a real estate entrepreneur. This transforms the castle to fit out and resell 45 private apartments. At the end of summer 2009, the first residents move into the apartments created in the castle.

The city of Cellier on the Château de Clermont history:

Louis de Funés filmography on IMDB with trailers:

And I feel better given credit in my blog to this huge movie star very humble not much buzz as many do but with a huge talent ,just see his films and learn French along with it. I did way back in the late 60’s!!! Hope you appreciate a post like this on the great Louis de Funés!

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

February 9, 2021

Three theaters of Paris, Odeon, St Martin,and Edouard VII!

This was my introductory post on three wonderful theaters of Paris; since then have posts on each. Nevertheless, this is a memorable spots for my family to will post revised  and update links in my black and white series of posts; hope you enjoy it as I.

So this is wonderful in Paris ,even if I myself need to do it more, it has been done. Theaters in Paris, the fact of the areas are all romantic and quant, and the shows are of historical significance in a historical building and of course ,Paris makes all worth it. 

The ones that I know well there is the Théatre des Nouveatés but that was for an entirely different show to see a friend who started out in expats circles in Paris showing How to be a Parisian and gain great following at this theater. 

We have the Théâtre de la Porte-Saint-Martin  located at 16 boulevard Saint Martin in the 10éme arrondissement or district of Paris . (see post on the porte de  St Martin)  The theater is the biggest in the grands du boulevard area with  1 800 seating capacity and only took two months to built to host the Royal Academy of Music or the Académie Royale de Musique after that of the Palais Royal was burned. It opened in October 27 1781 with the lyric tragedy of Adèle de Ponthieu  by Jean-Paul-André Razins de Saint-Marc on a music by Piccinni. After closing after the French revolution, again in 1802 under the name of Théâtre de la Porte-Saint-Martin or theater of the gate of St Martin playing great pieces of comedies and ballets. The theater is part of a group to support these theaters under the Théâtres Parisiens Associés or the associated Parisians theaters group. You get here on the metro lines 4,8,and 9 Strasbourg-Saint-Denis , metro line 3,5,8,0, and 11 République as well as bus lines 20,38, 39,and 47.

The official webpage of the Theater of the Gate of Saint Martin

Next ,lets move on to the Théâtre Édouard VII,  aka Théâtre Édouard VII – Sacha Guitry, and located between the Madeleine and Opéra Garnier. This one have seen the most fyi

The square Edouard VII (see post) opened in 1911 founder of the association of the rue Edouard VII at the place of the stables of a company of horse drawn carriages. It had immediately the support of the king of England Edward VII aka the most Parisian of the English kings. At the times the boulevard  ended at Maxim’s and here an Englishmen William Sprague built a spectacle place in 1913.

In 1920, there was a declaration of love that attracted the public to the Theater Edouard VII , called Je t’aime, Sacha Guitry did the declaration to Yvonne Printemps. All of Paris was witness to the ravishes of this love.  ” No spring is more delicious than the one in Paris, but when it is called Yvonne, it becomes incomparable… it is impossible to embody more exactly Paris ”  During many years Sacha Guitry gives the theater a prosperours future .Today we can see the unique poster of Sarah Bernhardt n the lobby of the theater.

Noel Coward played in French the Happy Sorrows  and  Raymond Rouleau features A Streetcar Named Desire of Tennessee Williams with Arletty. Orson Welles confirms his vocation to this Anglo-Saxon theater, in 1950, he played The Lobster in English for two months. In a brief direction, Raymond Rouleau staged one of his great successes, dangerous turn of John Boynton Priestley, which he performed with Gaby Sylvia and Mylène Demongeot. The theatre Édouard VII then knows beautiful evenings. The  Theatre Édouard VII, decide to join forces under a common sign,  the Association of Parisian Theaters.

The official theater of Edward VII:

I like to tell you about an unique theater. The Théâtre national de l’Odéon,  aka since 1990 the  Odéon–Théâtre de l’Europe, is located in the Place de l’Odéon in the 6éme arrondissement or district of Paris . The theater de l’Odéon can be reach by Metro lines 4 and 10 at the station Odeon as well as by RATP bus lines 58 63 70 87 86 87 89 96 and REC B and C. This is the most historical of them all.

Opened in 1782 to host the French theater or Théatre Français. Since 1971 the Odeon is part of the National Theaters of France . It is done in the Italian style and the exterior is neo classic. In 1767, the Marquis de Marigny director of the king’s properties asked for a project to built the French theater . The archtects chosen finally in 1778 were Marie Joseph Peyre and Charles de Wailly ,and worked began in 1779.

The exterior is sober with an austerity looking façade the original façade was flanked by pavilions linked by an arc and a semi circular layout, this is the first Italian inspired theater with an orchestra ,benches while the public attended on foot.  The crew of the Comédie-Française came here in 1782  and the salon was opened by queen Marie Antoinette. In 1784, it was played Le Mariage de Figaro by Beaumarchais created by Dazincourt also played before the queen Marie Antoinette and the court. Theater until 1789 ,the French revolution renamed it the Theater of the Nation. The theater of the Odeon was given by emperor Napoléon to the Senate and restored to its identical look to opened in 1808 under the name of her majesty the emperatrice and queen theater or Théâtre de Sa Majesté l’Impératrice et Reine of which again a fire destroyed it in 1818.

The new theater opened in 1819 and place by king Louis XVIII under the management of the Comédie-Française, as the second French theater or Second Théâtre-Français.  During the days of the Trois Glorieuses revolution in  July 1830 the theater was the center of the insurrection of the revolutionary youth. In 1848 Victor Hugo writes   “The Odeon is still deserted. putting a theatre in a deserted neighborhood that you want to vivify and imagine that you will bring the public, it’s as if you figure that by posing a fish on the earth somewhere, you will bring water”  As the area of the Faubourg Saint Germain does not attract as many folks as those of the Tuileries, Palais-Royal, and the now call Boulevard des Italians. Sarah Bernhardt made her beginnings here at the Odeon in the role of Aricie du Phédre by Racine giving for the feast of the emperor in 1866. However, it was in 1869 in the small act by François Coppée Le Passant that she entered in the costume of a Florentine trobabour and take off on her glorious career.  In 1872 she triumph in Ruy Blas by Victor Hugo before joining the Comédie-Française.

By 1946 it passes again under the management of the Comédie Française with the room Salle Luxembourg for 13 years , and really it is not until 1990 that the Odeon is really independent and takes the name of the Odéon–Théâtre de l’Europe  or Odeon theater of Europe in honor of the European theater project developed here by Giorgio Strehler in 1983.

The official theater of the Odéon/Europe:

The Association of Parisian Theaters  or Théâtres Parisiens Associes webpage:

The National Theaters of France are: Comédie-Française, Place Colette 1éme. Théâtre National de Chaillot ,1 pl du Trocadéro 16éme. Théâtre national de la Colline 15 Rue Malte Brun 20éme. National Theatre of Strasbourg; 1, Avenue of La Marseillaise, Strasbourg. And the above mentioned National Theatre of the Odéon/Europe.

The Ministry of Culture on the National Theaters of France webpage in French:

There you go, wonderful theaters of my eternal Paris and wonderful times with good friends always. You too should make time to visit one or two or…many. They are wonderful institutions full of history and architecture and you may like the presentations.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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February 9, 2021

The Petit Palais of Paris!

Well I am amazed always of the many wonderful monuments in my eternal Paris. I have to say better and more than anywhere else, one reason is call the most beautiful city in the world, and I agree. Here we have a wonderful building call the Petit Palais a wonderful expression of architecture and history. There is another bigger building across the street literally but for some reason the little palace is my favorite, that is the Petit Palais. Let me tell you a bit more on it as I update/revise an older post from 2018.

paris petit palais feb14

And here is another marvel of Paris. The inner courtyard cafe is just superb and surrounded by such beauty is incredible. My first encounter here was on a Incas of Peru exhibition about 10 years ago, and it remains close to me. I am talking about the Petit Palais de Paris.  The Petit Palais, was built on the occasion of the Universal Exhibition of 1900, houses the Museum of Fine Arts (Beaux-Arts)  of the city of Paris. It is located in the 8éme arrondissement or district of Paris, Avenue Winston-Churchill, facing the Grand Palais. The Petit Palais is served close by the Metro lines 1 and 13 at the station Champs-Elysées-Clemenceau and Metro line 9, station Franklin-Roosevelt , as well as by the bus lines RATP 28,42,72,73,80,83 and 93.


The Petit Palais is organized around a semi-circular garden. The exhibition sites are located on the first floor (2nd US), the ground floor (1st US) being originally dedicated to offices and reserves. The façade is about 150 meters long, centered by a monumental porch topped by a dome. Ionic columns with diagonal scrolls adorn the main facade as well as the semi-circular peristyle of the inner courtyard. The décor is complemented by numerous bas-reliefs. The sculptures on the façade are, the city of Paris protecting the Arts  with a woman seated holding in her left arm a ship symbolizing Paris and surrounded by the Muses; on the right, a group with the Seine river  and its tributaries. On the left, the Four Seasons group  with young women carrying sheafs of wheat and fruit.


From 1902, the Petit Palais becomes the Palais des Beaux-Arts of the city of Paris to host a permanent collection from antiquity to the end of the 19C, these collections were enriched by multiple donations of which one can cite the most important are of Eugène and Auguste Dutuit ceded their collection in 1902, rich of nearly 20 000 works and featuring several major works of the Dutch school including a autoportraits of Rembrandt and the abduction of Proserpine of Rubens, Greco-Roman Antiquities, Art objects of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, engravings and drawings of masters such as Martin Schongauer, Albrecht Dürer, Rembrandt, Fragonard etc.); in addition Edward and Julia Tuck ceded in 1930 their collection of 18C French art objects; Ambroise Vollard yields several modern works at the museum, including the portrait of Ambroise Vollard in the chat by Pierre Blackwell (1924) or another portrait of the painter by Paul Cézanne (1899); Roger Cabal bequeathed to the museum a collection of icons in 1998. Alongside these donations, the museum will acquire many works, including several paintings by Gustave Courbet.

For the past several years, contemporary photography has entered the Petit Palais when it was decided to present, in introduction to major international exhibitions, images of photographers inspired by the civilizations . Some of these photographs were then acquired by the museum. The museum’s graphic arts funds consists of 18 000 engravings and 9 000 old and modern designs. The collection of drawings includes many more much more, too numerous to mention in one blog post.

Additional exhibition spaces are created on the ground floor , with reserves moved to the basement. The permanent collection is exposed to the left by entering, the temporary exhibits to the right. In between the two, at the bottom of the garden, a coffee shop is wonderfully done to eat in a stunning garden. The windows of the exhibition spaces and the canopies of the permanent collections are designed for natural lighting. The offices are located above the temporary exhibition spaces. An amphitheater is created on the ground floor under the garden.

All and much more, this is nice and cute and lovely, a must to see in a wonderful area of Paris. You must come to the Petit Palais, enough said. Another wonder of Paris and now better covered in my blog.

paris petit palais ent PF jun06

Some webpages to help you plan your visit to this wonderful little palace are

The Official Petit Palais webpage:

The Paris tourist office on the Petit Palais

And remember , happy travels, good health,and many cheers to all!!!

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