Updated: Sep 5, 2021
Breaking News from France
After 18 months of theater closures in France, the two Aussie showgirls received their promotion to the principal role called Sublime, the most esteemed title in the company. This September they will debut as soloists at the Lido de Paris in Paris, France.
Sitting like a jewel on the Champs Elysees,
the Lido de Paris attracts movie stars like Johnny Depp, footballers like Neymar, and every tourist who visits Paris. Lido dancers perform next to celebrities at the Cannes Film Festival, appear on French award shows, and high profile sporting events. The theater
has a long history of hosting and developing France's most beloved stars. To perform at the Lido makes you a celebrity.
They were looking for the best of the best and they found it in Leah Dominiak.
“Aussies are taking over!” Leah said with a laugh when asked what she thinks about the recent promotion of two Australians. Hailing from Orange, New South Whales, Leah has been in high demand ever since she left home at age 18 to take her first international contract. 6 years later, Leah heard about the new revue at the Lido de Paris and jumped at the chance to try out. Auditions were held in Amsterdam, London, Berlin, and Paris with hundreds of hopefuls attending each one. Leah was one of the select few chosen to be the original cast of Paris Merveilles.
“I am proud to represent the Lido as one of their principal dancers.”
Their promotion coincides with the announcement that Josephine Baker, a showgirl and freedom fighter, will be receiving the highest honors in France. French showgirls are important influencers in society. French cabaret can be seen as the expression of beauty, liberty, and women empowerment in France.
French Showgirls are stars of Paris.
“I am so excited!”, exclaims Savanna Haenel, who also received this important promotion. Savanna arrived in Paris on her18th birthday to start her career at the Lido de Paris in 2017. She is from the Gold Coast, comes from a family of French Cabaret stars. Her aunt, Marissa Burgess, was a Moulin Rouge principal for 16 years. Her mother, Corina Burgess, was a principal at Lido de Paris. And her father, Gunnar Haenel, was a specialty act at the Lido where he met Savanna’s mother. One could say it’s in her genes, but it takes more than that to become a Sublime in France’s top cabaret.
“It’s like a breath of fresh air coming back.”
- Savanna Haenel
This is a great moment for Australia to feel pride about their international performers rising to the highest status in French theater. Mark your calendars for the day you can see these exceptional stars at the Lido de Paris. Or better yet, aspire to become a showgirl in the most glamorous city in the world.
Certainly, these two new stars of Lido are happy to return the stage after more than a year of uncertainty. They wish to tell Australian dancers to keep strong, train hard, and reach for their goals. If you need any inspiration, follow Leah Dominiak at @leah_dancing and Savanna Haenel at @shecreativeindustries where she highlights upcoming Australian performers.
About the Author: Hillary Sukhonos is an American Showgirl in France who believes sequins, feathers, and intelligence go together. Shine bright and read www.birdintheworld.com.