Theatres and music venues in Bastille

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La Loge

  • Price band: 1/4
  • Critics choice

In a hidden courtyard (reminiscent of Swiss chalets) off rue de Charonne, the 100-seater La Loge offers performances that merge theatre, dance and music.  Every summer, the “Summer of Loge” festival invites eight theatre companies for performances, followed by post-show festivities that have previously included pyjama parties and concerts. The rest of the year, from Tuesday to Thursday, there are two shows a night, at 7pm and at 9pm.

  1. 77 rue de Charonne, 11e
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Théâtre de la Bastille

  • Price band: 2/4

This small theatre showcases innovative contemporary dance and drama pieces.

  1. 76 rue de la Roquette, 11e
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La Mécanique Ondulatoire

  • Rated as: 4/5
  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

This is one of Time Out's 100 best bars in Paris. Click here to see the full list. The Bastille area is well known as a haunt of rock fans, and La Mécanique Ondulatoire [the wave machine] is a fantastic bazaar of retro souvenirs and vintage furniture spread over two floors. On the ground floor, a stunning wall of every imaginable alcohol gives you an idea of the well-priced cocktails concocted here. Downstairs, there are DJs and rock, ska, punk and metal gigs (even on Sundays, sometimes), inviting you to hum along, tap your feet or, if you’re feeling really brave, to get down and mosh. Entry to the bar is free and downstairs is around €5-€6, so there’s nothing stopping you donning some leather and tattered jeans and giving that day’s act a look.

  1. 8 passage Thiéré, 11e
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Opéra Bastille

It is never going to be a beautiful building, but when the restoration of the falling fascia tiles is completed, it may at least become a safe one. The unfinished salle modulable, the unflattering acoustics and the miles of corridors combine to create an atmosphere more akin to an airport than an opera house, but the standard of performance is what matters and the Bastille looks set for some exciting evenings under new director Nicolas Joel.

  1. Place de la Bastille, 12e
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Ateliers de Charonne

  • Rated as: 5/5
  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice
  • Free

This spanking new jazz club is the place to see the rising stars of gypsy jazz (jazz manouche). If you want to grab a good spot near the front of the stage, reserve for dinner and the show.

  1. 21 rue de Charonne, 11e
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Le Motel

  • Rated as: 4/5
  • Price band: 1/4
  • Critics choice

This is one of Time Out's 100 best bars in Paris. Click here to see the full list. Squirreled away in an alleyway near the Bastille, Le Motel is the ideal hangout for fans of hip electro-pop-rock. The very friendly staff serve explosive cocktails like the Vodka-Tatin (apple and cinnamon flavoured, like the tart), the Joe (vodka and watermelon) or the Leon des Bois (vodka, lime, strawberry and mint), and the cheese and charcuterie boards are half price during happy hour (6pm-9pm). Find a seat on one of the semi-circle of second hand sofas arranged around the bar, and as the evening progresses, DJs perform electrifying sets that ensure a packed dance floor on weekends. On Tuesdays, Wednesdays and alternate Sundays there’s a pop quiz that attracts many regulars, with their impressive musical knowledge.

  1. 8 passage Josset, 11e
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China

  • Rated as: 5/5
  • Price band: 3/4
  • Critics choice

This is one of Time Out's 100 best bars in Paris. Click here to see the full list. The China is a chic Asian bar-restaurant and gig venue whose exotic décor seems inspired by a 1930s Shanghai colonial club. With padded leather Chesterfield sofas, red walls, dark wood panelling and a black and white checkerboard floor, the shadowy warmth of this lounge is in the best tradition of a British gentleman’s club. Behind a splendid chrome counter, discreet staff prepare distinguished cocktails, like the Hemingway (a visionary alchemy of brown Cuban rum, Cointreau, lime and grapefruit) – we recommend you take advantage of the happy hour (5pm ‘til 8pm) to sample them for €6 instead of €12. For those who prefer a good vintage, the wine list is enormous. If you’re not afraid to splash out on your credit card, head to the dining area to taste their Asian fusion cuisine, like a tender medallion of chicken gently scented with shiitake mushrooms and Thai lemon. Fancy an after-dinner tipple? Head upstairs for a good cognac in the cigar lounge, which sports a fireplace and a library of old books. You’ll also find a ‘genuine smoking room’ outside, in a winter garden livened up with bamboo plants. In the basement, there are two free concerts every evening, mostly jazz, soul, pop and world music (detailed program on the website).  As the venue is well known for its good gigs, the comfortable leather sofas soon fill up, so arrive early or reserve a table if you don’t want to finish propping up the

  1. 50 rue de Charenton, 12e
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