Saturday 17 August 2019

'We will not surrender' - Le Bataclan manager says theatre will reopen following Paris attacks

Officers who stormed venue describe it as "seeing hell"

Le Bataclan concert hall, 50 Boulevard Voltaire, Paris
Le Bataclan concert hall, 50 Boulevard Voltaire, Paris
Woman hangs by her fingertips during the terror attack at the Bataclan in Paris Photo: Le Monde

David Kearns

The concert venue where 89 people were killed in the bloodiest moments of last week’s terror attacks in Paris “will reopen soon”, insists its defiant manager.

Dominique Revert, co-manager of the Bataclan theatre, said the popular music hall would open its doors again despite the devastating terror attack because “we will not surrender”.

“Le Bataclan will not be defined solely by this tragedy,” he said in an interview with Billboard.

“It will reopen, no question about it. Hearts will be heavy for a few months, a few years. But we will reopen.”

Read More: 'Paris has been wounded but it won't die'

Echoing this hope, former owner Joel Laloux, who had run the venue for nearly 40 years before selling it in September, said he was optimistic the hall would reopen. 

“I have huge hope that with the enormous outpouring of solidarity in France and worldwide there is a human desire to make sure that this place is not assassinated,” the 63-year-old told the Guardian newspaper.

Le Bataclan, first opened in 1864, has played host to names such as Kanye West, Jeff Buckley and Foo Fighters.

Following last Friday’s deadly attacks, David Guetta, one-time resident DJ at the venue, wrote on Facebook that the concert hall would always be a place of “music and joy”.

Mourners reflect on the city's great loss at floral tributes outside the Bataclan theatre in Paris
Mourners reflect on the city's great loss at floral tributes outside the Bataclan theatre in Paris

“The Bataclan has always been for me a place of music, sharing and joy.

“I never would have imagined that it would become the place of such a tragedy,” he said.

Read More: Profile of a female suicide bomber: The bubbly, outgoing girl who wore cowboy hats and drank

Je suis bouleversé et profondément triste.Le Bataclan a toujours été pour moi un endroit de musique, de partage et de...

Posted by David Guetta on Monday, 16 November 2015

Yesterday evening, some of the police officers who stormed a concert hall during the Paris attacks described what they saw.

"At first they thought they were walking in water, then they realised it was blood," police union spokesman Nicolas Comte told the BBC.

"They had to make their way in the dark, stepping over bodies.

"The wounded lying there saw the police. They were calling out to the officers, moaning, begging them.

“They tried to catch hold of my colleague as [he] went past but the officers couldn't help them.

“It was really like hell,” he added.

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