Seven Ways to Celebrate Bastille Day in New York City


Yes, FIAF has already hosted its annual Bastille Day bash, so 60th Street has been cleared of cancan girls, but the fête isn’t over yet. Le quatorze juillet is actually Thursday, and in the spirit of the revolution, we will be celebrating all week. Below, a daily guide to keep the party going. Vive la France!

Tuesday, July 12th: Visit France, err, Governor’s Island, with the New York Classical Theatre! Travel from England (Battery Park) across the Channel (New York Harbor) and into France (Governor’s Island) in this inventive staging of Shakespeare’s Henry V. The French didn’t do well at the Battle of Agincourt, so if you’d rather not see an English victory opt for the extended run of Tony Kushner’s adaptation of Corneille’s The Illusion, in its last week at the Signature Theatre.

Wednesday, July 13th: Celebrate the eve of Bastille Day the way French revolutionaries did: by indulging in a feast as if it were your last. Storming the Bastille took energy, and so will tomorrow’s festivities. Try charming West Village favorite Buvette for delicious traditional dishes.

Thursday, July 14th: Le quatorze juillet! Don your Breton stripes and bring along a pack of Gauloises to Midsummer Night Swing’s collaborative fete with Gemini and Scorpio in Damrosch Park. Les Hot Sardines will be playing hot jazz, with tap dancers and an accordion player also in attendance. Wear your French-inspired best-it’s a costume party with serious prizes, and the competition will be stiff. Begins at 6pm.

Another option: Act like a French tourist, and take a picture in front of Dominique Strauss-Kahn’s Tribeca townhouse. Only time will tell if DSK has done for 153 Franklin Street what Carrie Bradshaw did for 66 Perry, but speculating about the IMF mogul’s Bastille Day plans is endlessly entertaining.

Friday, July 15th: Catch a special screening of Yves Robert’s La Gloire de mon Père in Riverside Pak. Part of the French Embassy’s free Films on the Green series! (8:30pm)

Saturday, July 16th: Head to Littlefield in Brooklyn for the only party in town that promises “hot mimes”, cancan girls, free gin cocktails, and a Marie Antoinette-themed burlesque show. Hosted by The Skint. (2pm-; $2 cover charge)

Sunday, July 17th: Visit the Hotel Novotel Terrace for sweeping views of Times Square and the finale of French Culture Nights’ two day Bastille Festival. Performances by French singers and DJs, exhibitions of the work of French artists, food and wine tastings, a Bastille Brunch, and more (Saturday 12pm-1am; Sunday 12pm-5:30pm). Entrance is free if you RSVP online.