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Lana Del Rey fulfills dream in Paris return

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Lana Del Rey at the Olympia, Paris, July 10, 2023.

Until two weeks ago, Lana Del Rey’s short European tour, which kicked off on Saturday, June 24, at the Glastonbury Festival in England, had no Paris dates. Until the American singer dreamt one night that she was playing the Olympia again. A diva’s privilege… While her French producer’s proposals to perform this summer in major venues such as the Accor Arena or Paris La Défense Arena had gone unheeded, an evening in the legendary hall on Boulevard des Capucines on Monday, July 10, was organized at the last minute to please her. Much to the surprise and excitement of fans deprived of her presence since her 2017 performance at the French edition of the Lollapalooza festival, three years after her August 2014 appearance at Rock en Seine. Her last concert hall appearance dates back to April 2013, at the Olympia.

The 2,000 tickets sold out in four minutes on Monday, July 3, with 420,000 people logging on to the online queue in the hope of buying a seat (prices ranging from 98 to 199 euros) for this intimate concert (the rest of the European dates being split between arenas and giant festivals). On Sunday, July 9, the day before the show, a column of admirers lined up on Boulevard des Capucines, camping out overnight as far as Rue Scribe in the hope of being in the front rows of the orchestra the following evening.

Del Rey owes this fervor to her rarity, but above all to a career that inspires admiration. Thanks to her character as the femme fatale of melancholy, to her ability to shape a visual and musical universe combining nostalgic obsessions and contemporary disillusionment. Thanks to her ability to create a body of work that is unmistakably her own, but also to renew herself, increasingly asserting herself as the master of her own destiny. Her most recent albums, such as Norman Fucking Rockwell! (2019) or the sprawling Did You Know That There’s a Tunnel Under Ocean Blvd, released in March, are not far from being her most exciting.

Album Review: On ‘Did You know That There’s a Tunnel Under Ocean Blvd’, Lana Del Rey dives deep

Hollywood mythologies

Ten years ago, on this very stage, she overplayed the glamour of a starlet with Lynchian strangeness. This time she returned, at 38, dressed in a long, floral dress of white, green and yellow, her hair bedazzled with jewels − somewhere between a 1950s prom queen and a fairytale princess. She seems to be having a lot of fun as a sort of cabaret vedette, surrounded by a quartet of instrumentalists, three backing singers in silver rhinestones and six dancers inspired as much by classical ballet, Las Vegas cabarets and sixties Motown shows as by rhythmic gymnastics.

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