The immediate neighbour to the vineyard (see yesterday) is a small cabaret, called Lapin Agile. (I could tell the story behind the name, but that would take too much room here.)
The small building must have been there for a few centuries and it was obviously always some kind of place for eating and drinking. Around 1900 a personality with the nickname “Frédé” gave new life to it and it became a meeting place for all kinds of artists. “Frédé” played the guitar and the violoncello, sang and got the guests to actively participate. Already or later famous artists were regular guests, like Appolinaire, Marcel Proust and painters like Renoir, Utrillo, Braque, Modigliano, Picasso (always the same), but also Fernand Léger and Maurice Vlaminck.
Around 1920 “Frédé’s son took over.
A lot of musicians and singers have performed here in the beginning of their career, surprisingly also including some classic music performers like Alexandre Lagoya, Ida Presti, Siatoslav Richter, Leontyne Price…
The guestbook is also fantastic. There are drawings, poems, signatures by all the famous artists who have worked or visited the place, but there have also been some occasional visitors like Charlie Chaplin, Gloria Swanson, Ernest Hemmingway, Edward G. Robinson, Robert Mitchum, Laurence Olivier, Vivien Leigh, Paul Newman, Joanne Woodward, Laurence Bacall, Henry Miller and… Eleanor Roosevelt, The Empress of Japan… (I neglect here the local French celebrities.)
Steve Martin made a play called “Picasso at the Lapin Agile”.
The life of the cabaret goes on. What will become of today’s performers?