I'm making July Josephine month in Black Paris. Why? Because there's a couple more exciting ways for you to celebrate La Venus Noire.
The Josephine Baker Pool
In her debut, she got a reputation for 'taking it off'. Test your own sense of adventure by stripping off the summer finery, slipping into a swimsuit, and taking a dip in the Josephine Baker pool. Encased in glass, this floating barge of serenity is moored to the
The pool opened in July 2006 but closed unexpectedly because of a fire in the gym section. It re-opens July 21st. It's not exactly for Olympic swimmers - but you can get in a 25 meter (82 ft) lap. Or take it easy and just soak up the rays streaming through the sleek, retractable sun-roof, meditate on the
Though the location may seem off the well-traced tourist path, it's a great introduction to this 13th district, once an obstacle course of industrial buildings now home to branché artists' squats, very hip clubs (some on the boats nearby) and the new library. Until Aug 20, the piscine Joséphine Baker offers a cool dip off if you're lounging on the makeshift but hugely fun
If you go: Metro: Bibliotheque F.Mitterand, line 14. Tel 01 56 61 96 50 Entrance:5E.
'In Search of Josephine' Show at Casino de Paris
If you never got to see Josephine in one of her dazzling shows, you've got until August 17 to check out the spectacular 'In Search of Josephine', now playing at the Casino de Paris in the 9th district,
Josephine actually performed at the Casino in 1930 (it's not a gambling casino, in fact, but a luxurious concert hall), shaking up the entertainment world and enraging her rival Mistinguett. Josephine's 'The Show That Shakes' did just that.
Just as important: this place is home to African-American jazz in
One our tour participants (Shirellia Moore), kindly took these photos as we visited the Casino during our Walking The Spirit Tours Tour #2 The Entertainers. This is upstairs at the Perroquet Room today, same as in the 1930s.
Stateside, the US Post Office has just issued a series of stamps commemorating the greats of Black Cinema, including our Josephine. Buy them at your nearest outlet or through the website.