Valentin Le Désossé
THE MAN IN THE QUADRILLE
The memory of this rubber man with the elongated silhouette is shrouded in mystery. He was a dancer who, according to legend, danced more than 39,962 waltzes, 27,220 quadrilles, 14,966 polkas and mazurkas and 1000 lanciers, for a total of 83,112 performances on the stage of the Moulin Rouge! The son of a notary clerk, Valentin was ‘high class,’ as his quadrille partner, La Goulue, used to say. He danced at the Moulin Rouge for his own pleasure, and his behaviour was as straight as his figure: he never accepted a single cent for appearing in the show that le tout Paris flocked to see.
He disappeared suddenly one day without a trace, and no one has ever found out what became of him.