Tuesday, November 30, 2021, Joséphine Baker enters the Panthéon. On April 10, 1975, when the artist was urgently hospitalized in Paris, at the Salpêtrière, another great lady rushed to his bedside, faithful until her last breath, Princess Grace of Monaco.
In this month of April 1975, at the age of 68, Joséphine Baker bluffed the All-Paris by making a triumph on the stage of the famous music hall of Bobino. A more than unexpected return, tells the biographer Emmanuel Bonini in The real Josephine Baker (Ed. Pygmalion-Gérard Watelet), because of a part the one who had a terrible childhood badly in need of money and on the other hand because she cannot do without fame. But the next day, while the public and his troupe were waiting for him, the artist was rushed to the Salpêtrière. According to the first rumors, she would have entered a deep coma.
Immediately informed, Princess Grace of Monaco, who had recovered the ultimate fireworks display from Josephine to Bobino, left her palace to go to her bedside. The two women are close. In 1969, the second even came to the aid of the first, when the latter was ruined, welcoming his family of 12 children.
Discreetly, the princess is led into Josephine Baker’s room through a back door. In the hallway leading to the bedroom, she sees the troop of dancers, floored. Grace kneels by the dying woman’s bed. ” Upset, she mixes her fingers with his, comes closer and whispers in the hollow of his ear a few words that will remain between them and God., says Emmanuel Bonini. And it will be her princely whispers that Josephine will take with her in her last sleep, as the most beautiful of his victories: the consecration of his dream of universal brotherhood with the symbol of these two Americas here reconciled, that of arrogance and discrimination and the other, that of a negritude enslaved for centuries. “
Joséphine Baker’s last wishes
Josephine Baker will not wake up. In the early morning of April 12, it goes out at the same time as the neon lights on the facades of the music halls. The stroke was not a victim was fatal. A fiery chapel is erected in a room of the hospital.
During the funeral, in the church of the Madeleine, the organ plays one last time I have two loves. Princess Grace would have discreetly wiped a tear as she descended the steps and delegated to the theater designer André Levasseur: ” If it hadn’t been for Bobino, she would have gone as quietly as an old lady who died in a hospice. »Then, according to the wishes of Josephine Baker, all the flowers of the ceremony arrived by entire characters are placed on the tomb of the unknown soldier and on the many commemorative plaques of the brave” fallen for France “in the streets of Paris.
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