Here's one of my favorite bits of creepy history, compliments of the always amazing sixpenceee.
Cabaret du Néant (The Cabaret of the Void)
Basically this was a sort of gothic themed night club back in the 1890’s in Paris, but not like you imagine. Let me tell you about the cool and creepy things that went on here.
- After entering the Cabaret, spectators followed a “monk” down a blackened hall to a café with candles on coffin-shaped tables where they could order drinks from waiters who were dressed as if they were attending a funeral.
- A lectured called their attention to paintings of figures that dissolved into paintings of skeletons.
- While dark music played, the monk led the audience to a second chamber; here, a volunteer was asked to step up on a stage and enter a standing casket.
- After the volunteer was wrapped in a white shroud the spectators gasped at an apparent “X-ray” effect as the man dissolved into a skeleton and then once again returned to plain sight as the skeleton disappeared.
- In the last chamber, using a similar optical effect, a live spirit appeared to walk around an audience volunteer who mounted the stage to sit at a table.
Dark entertainment? But either way, I’d love to visit.
*just to be extra clear, this isn't my work- there's a link to sixpenceee's site at the top