Sting took to the stage at the iconic venue to perform songs from his latest albums for survivors of the Paris attacks and their families, along with a thousand other guests November 12.
In the first show at the venue since 90 people were killed nearly one year ago, the British singer took a moment to speak in French about the tragedy.
“Tonight we have two important tasks,” he said. “First, remember and honour those who lost their lives in the attacks a year ago. And second, to celebrate life and music in this historic venue.”
“So before I begin, I would like to start with a minute of silence. We will not forget them.”
Performing hits like “Message in a Bottle”, the singer also dedicated his song “50,000” to Lemmy, Motorhead’s frontman, Leonard Cohen, and The Eagles’ Glen Frey — all musicians who passed this year.
In re-opening the Bataclan, we have two important tasks to reconcile. First, to remember and honour those who lost their lives in the attack a year ago, and second to celebrate the life and the music that this historic theatre represents. In doing so we hope to respect the memory as well as the life affirming spirit of those who fell. We shall not forget them.
“The reopening of the Bataclan, in music, is a sign that we are turning to the future through the creation, sharing, and gathering around artists,” French Culture Minister Audry Azoulay wrote in a Facebook post Saturday.
“This return of life to the Bataclan is also the victory of youth and the ideals of humanism against terror and division.”
Sting had announced the concert on November 4, tweeting:
130 people were killed in the attacks on November 13, 2015, the worst of which occurred at the Bataclan, where 90 people lost their lives after two terrorists stormed a performance by Eagles of Death Metal.