16th Anniversary of Avant Que L’ombre… Tour

Avant que l’ombre… à Bercy … tour was held January 13, 2006 – January 29, 2006

If you would like to see full concert – follow the link: https://www.bilibili.com/video/BV1b5411V7pF/?spm_id_from=trigger_reload

This is a full concert with Russian translation: https://vk.com/video-4439870_456239246

Avant Que L’ombre… is Mylène Farmer’s 2006 concert in support of her sixth studio album, Avant que l’ombre…. It was the fourth tour of the singer. Unlike her previous tours, all 13 concerts took place at Palais Omnisports de Bercy in Paris; “Avant que l’ombre” can therefore be considered as a concert residency rather than a fully-fledged tour.

169,000 tickets were sold about a year before the concerts so NEVERMORE is not really an exception – although it is a new record 340 000 were sold within the first two weeks.

This tour is by far is your favorite among all the tours Mylene farmer did up to date. I have run the poll for a while now and as you can see in the results.

I have to be honest, at first, I was surprised to see such a results:

There were incredible Tours Mylene has done before: Mylenium for instance. I thought it would be hard to compete, incredible Timeless 2013 with all the futuristic robots and the stage decor straight form the molecule accelerator/ Sci-Fi, The Tour # 5 is a total jewel with Mylene looking stunning and the entire Jean-Paul Gaultier outfits and the joyful atmosphere of the concerts is impossible to beat.

And then of course very last 9 appearances of Mylene in 2019 – masterpiece! But yet Avant que l’ombre remains on the top of the list. Why is it? Mystery, Magic, Tons of talent and creativity and perhaps a few sprinkles of numerology?

If you didn’t take the poll, please do so below:

This Tour holds a numerological mystery: there were 13 concerts all together. The first concert was on Friday the 13, 2006. There were 13,000 spectators each night.

The first song of the concert (merged with the intro when monks carried out her time capsule) Peut-être toi is a track 13 on the album Avant que l’ombre …. And , if we add up the numbers composing the first date, 1 + 3 + 0 + 1 + 2 + 0 + 0 + 6, the total is 13. 😮 And finally the letter “M” (as in Mylene) is 13th in the Hebrew alphabet and the number 13 is often considered to be a token of strength and even luck.

The consumes were created by Franck Sorbier – please read HERE everything you wanted to know about this collaboration

I always wondered How such a poetic and deeply meaningful title came about? Of cource it is after the famous song – you’d say…right??😊But what is there is more to it?

IS IT POSSIBLE THE REASON MYLENE TITLED HER CONCERTS IN 2006 “AVANT QUE L’OMBRE” – BECAUSE OF THE MOVIE PLANNED BY THE BOOK ENTITLED ” L’Ombre des autres” AND WHICH WAS TO BE MADE IN 2009? it’s an “A-HA” moment!! What is your opinion, my friends? Please, comment on below

Mylene said it herself: “I have a project for a feature film. It’s a project that was initiated by Claude Berri, whom I loved deeply, based on a book by Nathalie Rheims and whose director will be Bruno Aveillan. And this will be his first feature film and, my goodness, after that, the future will tell… It will be for me a first role, a second film and, I hope, an encounter with the public.” Le Grand Studio – RTL, 12/09/2009″

It is unfortunate that Mylene never got to play Tess (main heroin of the book who she was relating very much. An atmosphere in the book is set to be somewhat reminiscent to Edgar Poe (perhaps, another reason to be drown to the role) Unusual phenomena are multiplying. Around the manor, in the shadows, followers of spiritualism and magic, secret societies weave a web where Tess could well find herself trapped.
The young woman is bewitched by the presence of Émile to the point of questioning everything, of leaving everything to go to the end of her fascination. What a wonderful movie might have been yet was destined to be under teh wraps or in the shadows. 🙁 Do you think Mylene fit well to the role of Tess?

stage design

But lets return to the concerts. Here is what one of the fans said about her impression per entrance: ” it was simply magnificent. The first night when I entered the room, I literally fell on my knees just by seeing the huge doors that hide the stage, already there it gave the tone.
I was very well placed, in the second row the first night, in the tier the second (for a more global view) and in the first row facing the stage my last night.

I remember that it was the most total excitement, I was impatient (like everyone else), I had really liked the little movie that was playing just before the concert (“Le conte du monde flottant” by Alain Escalle if I remember correctly), it was fascinating.

Then when the first” Shut Up “resounded in the room, the cries of joy and emotion came, the” Shut Up “follow one another, with the lighting effects (just to go back in my memories, I have goosebumps)”

The door of the concerts Before the shadow … in Bercy seems to reproduce The Sacrifice of Isaac

The panel produced by Lorenzo Ghiberti in 1401 for the north door of the Battistero di San Giovanni.

The water curtain of the show was not initially planned for the finale of the show Avant que l’ombre … at Bercy but rather for the Fuck them all background. A pyrotechnic final with magicians was in fact planned, but it proved to be unconvincing during the rehearsals at Bercy. It was only a few days before the premiere that it was decided to use the water curtain for the song Avant que l’ombre ….

It was initially planned to display only letters and words on the water curtain. It was during the rehearsals that a technician had fun showing the silhouette of Mylène appearing on the concert poster. Convincing results that will be selected for the show.

20,000 liters of water were used for each concert. The water was at a temperature of about 15°C. The use of the writing water curtain for the Bercy 2006 concerts was a world first. Michel Kintzig, the artistic director of the concerts, discovered this process during a convention for the company Renault and proposed the idea to Mylène. It was then being developed by the company Aquatic Show. Read more HERE

The scenic images of Avant l’ombre… created by Alain Escalle are inspired by the latent image of Christ appearing on the Turin shroud.

The sublime final dress worn by Mylène and designed by Franck Sorbier was entirely embroidered and adorned with genuine Tahitian cultured pearls. The red color was chosen to recall the coat created by Franck Sorbier for the opera La Traviata, which Mylène loved. This coat is one of the rare concert costumes that was not made in duplicate. It is therefore a unique piece. More about costumes HERE

I found s beautiful story of a fan traveling to see the concert and all the impressions during and afterwards – read more here.


In the 16th century, hundreds of skeletons were exhumed from the Roman catacombs and sent to churches in Germany, Austria and Switzerland, as part of the Counter-Reformation to replace relics destroyed by Protestants. These skeletons were adorned with jewelry (which took up to five years for some relics).

“The churches of Weyarn and Gutenzellin Bavaria (one of the spearheads of the Counter-Reformation) contain curious relics which constitute another aspect of Baroque death (Reliquaries of Saint Christine, Saint Alexander, Saint Valère, c. 1755 ***). The Council of Trent endorsed the cult of martyrs. The basement of Rome was rich in catacombs. One of them was discovered in 1578, which was the starting point of a very lucrative operation of resale of the skeletons of the alleged martyrs. From the beginning of the 17th century, the Church began to systematically unearth bones and resell them throughout Catholic Europe. An anonymous martyr, who could not be invoked, would not have corresponded to the expectations of the buyers. They were therefore “baptized” with a Christian name – Félix, Clément, Faustine, Alexandre… – and their origin is guaranteed by a certificate from the Curia.

In Bavaria, the buyers were nobles, church founders, bishops and abbots, all eager to attract pilgrims and their donations to their lands – in a way, it was an operation to promote religious tourism. Once the saint arrived there, he was installed in a chapel built for this purpose (for this, we appealed for months to the generosity of the faithful).

For relics presented in full view of the faithful, such as the skeletons of Weyarn and Gutenzell, female convents specialized in dressing. The bones were sometimes coated with wax and always covered with gauze to remove their macabre appearance. The basis of the decoration consisted of elements of colored glass, strings of pearls, braids of gold and silver threads, encased precious and semi-precious stones, etc. After which, the festivities could begin. A large procession led the saint to his home, accompanied by sermons, tableaux vivants (representing scenes from the saint’s life), and ending with a high mass. Sometimes the program of the festivities was printed.

The Vatican did not put an end until the middle of the 19th century. to this traffic in relics, which is increasingly contested. Belief in true martyrs quickly died out in the twentieth century, and many churches found themselves greatly embarrassed by their unknown Roman, allegedly Alexander, Placide or Justine. They were banished and hid in modest chapels. In 1972, the inhabitants of Endorf found a clever solution by walling their “Clement” in the bell tower. “

There is a slight resemblance of Mylene’s costume with those martyrs. From the interview with Franck Sorbier we also know of the inspiration by film Cleopatra


The Shroud of Turin is a yellowed linen sheet 4.42 meters long by 1.13 meters wide showing the very blurred imprint image (front and back) of a man presenting traces of wounds corresponding to a crucifixion. The depiction of certain details of the Crucifixion of Jesus of Nazareth described in the canonical Gospels is the object of popular piety and is considered by the Catholic Church as an icon. Some believers venerate it as an emblematic relic, the “Shroud”. The shroud has been kept since 1578 in the Chapel of Guarini in the Cathedral of Saint John the Baptist in Turin.

Reference confirmed by Alain Escalle, designer of the concert scene images: “ This painting is taken directly from one of my video installations entitled“ I will be a flame. ”The basic purpose for me was to bring to life this latent image of Christ appearing on the shroud (Shroud of Turin). This is not provocation of course, just a desire to humanize this image. The installation happened to fit perfectly with the theme of  Before the shadow … ” ( IAO – 2006 )

Stage light design


Apparently an unusual hairstyle for the spectacles was inspired by no-one else but…the Little Prince himself!

Reference confirmed by John Nollet, creator of Mylène’s hairstyle for the concerts Before the shadow … at Bercy : ” Mylène wanted me to create a new image for her, a new head, she wanted us to see her differently. So there was a whole process of creation. I started from the Little Prince and Mylène adhered to this idea. ” ( MF & Vous – 2006 )

Mylène had already referred to this tale by Saint-Exupéry in the song Dessine-moi un mouton on the Innamoramento album in 1999.


Virginia Woolf | Biography, Books, Death, & Facts | Britannica

I wanted to talk about death, but life broke in as usual”   ( Journal of Virginia Woolf , February 17, 1922)

Virginia Woolf is an English woman of letters and feminist born January 25, 1882 and died March 28 1941.

The reference to Virginia Woolf in the program of the concerts Before the shadow … at Bercy reminds us that the song Dans les rue de Londres is featured on the album Avant que ombre … (2005) and performed during these concerts is dedicated to Virginia Woolf

ETTY HILLESUM – A LIFE interrupted

“Everything is chance, or nothing is chance.If I believed in the first possibility, I could not live, but I am not convinced of the second.”

Etty Hillesum is a Dutch Jewish author who was born January 15, 1914 and died in the Auschwitz extermination camp on November 30, 1943. She kept her diary between 1941 and 1943, later published under the title Interrupted Life .

Influence also in the continuity of the album Before the Shadow … (2005) in which the lyrics of two songs, Dans les rue de Londres and Tous ces combats  were in part inspired by this book by Etty Hillesum


Peut-être toi
Dans les rues de Londres
Porno graphique

Act II
Sans contrefaçon
C’est une belle journée

Ange, parle-moi…
L’Autre (Replaced by Ainsi-soit je… on the first 2 dates)
Nobody Knows

Act IV
Je t’aime mélancolie
L’amour n’est rien…
Les Mots (duet with Abraham Laboriel Jr.)
Fuck Them All
Avant que l’ombre…

Juliette Gréco had attended the concert Avant que l’ombre…which she speaks about in the interview of Europe on January 27, 2006: “She [Mylene] has a little side like that sado .. (laughs). She has a winning side. She has a little leather side … with that fragile physique like that, lit by candles and all of a sudden, she rocks that. I like it.

Mylène had greeted her presence by concluding the Déshabillez-moi song with these words: “I just wanted to share with you my joy to have Juliette Gréco in this room. I stole her song from her. I admit that it’s a huge pleasure and I really love this artist. Thank you for being there.”

The page last edited January 27, 2022

Published by E.V. Sky

Writer. Poet. Woman. Soul

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