The Last Year of the Bataclan: A Timeline

Billboard

Sunday marks the one-year anniversary of one of the greatest tragedies the world has endured this decade, and one that briefly turned entire musical world upside down. The attacks in and around the Bataclan theater in Paris, France, occurring during a gig played by hard-rock band Eagles of Death Metal, claimed 89 lives in total -- the center of a series of terror shootings and bombings that left over 100 dead and several hundred more injured.

A year later, the club is finally on the verge of its triumphant reopening. Here is a timeline of the events surrounding the Bataclan, from the original incident until today (Nov. 13), tracking the venue's long road to recovery in the face of seemingly insurmountable calamity.

Nov. 13: A series of a half-dozen coordinated attacks occur throughout the city of Paris, with the deadliest coming at the Bataclan theater, where the Eagles of Death Metal are playing. Gunmen open fire on the attendants -- thought to be in the range of 1,500 -- and throw grenades into the crowd, according to witness reports. As police surround the venue, gunmen take dozens of concert-goers hostage. The police eventually breach the theater -- based on reports that the assailants had started executing hostages -- leading to two of the perpetrators detonating suicide vests.

In all, 89 casualties are reported in and around the venue. Shortly afterwards, terrorist group ISIS claims responsibility for the day's attacks, saying they were conducted in response to French air strikes against its group in Syria.


Nov. 16: The Bataclan issues its first official statement following the attacks, announcing that the venue would be closed indefinitely. "No words can express the magnitude of our grief," the release reads. "Our thoughts are with the victims, the injured and their relatives... unfortunately the authorities still need to work on the spot. We will keep you informed as soon as it is possible to collect you in front of the room. We thank you for your support that affects us deeply."

Dec. 2: Managers at the Bataclan tell Le Figaro that they hope for the venue to be reopened by the end of 2016. "The Bataclan should not be a mausoleum or a place of pilgrimage ... it's necessary to see the doors open again," Jules Frutos explains to the newspaper. "The teams want reconstruction, the artists, too. It will be a cross to bear."

Dec. 8: A couple days after making a cameo at a U2 gig in Paris, Eagles of Death Metal return to the scene of the tragedy, making their first visit to the Bataclan since the night of their concert. According to The New York Times, the band "spent about 10 minutes outside the concert hall in a heavy rain, laying flowers at a makeshift memorial site and reading tributes to the dead," receiving a round of applause upon their arrival from spectators at the site.


Feb. 11: The Bataclan announces its official plans to re-open by year's end. "Today, we wish to share with you some important news: we have decided to [proceed with] the renovation of the Bataclan," reads a post on the venue's Facebook page. "We will do our best to accommodate to new shows before the end of the year 2016. We will keep you informed, of course, as soon as our project will be [ready]."

Feb. 16: Eagles of Death Metal returns to Paris to put their November concert to rest, but do so at the Olympia Theater, rather than the still-closed Bataclan. Nonetheless, the concert provides healing for those who were at attendance at the original gig: "This finishes the concert that was at the Bataclan," survivor Frank Auffret tells The New York Times. "It closes the book so that we can turn the page on the dramatic event that we all suffered through and begin other things."

March 10: The Bataclan responds to comments made the day before by Eagles of Death Metal's Jesse Hughes, concerning what he saw as the relative absence of security at the venue the night of their show: "It seems rather obvious that they had a reason not to show up."

"Jesse Hughes spread some very grave and defamatory accusations against the Bataclan teams," reads the venue's statement, as originally reported by Variety. "A judicial investigation is undergoing. We wish to let justice proceed serenely. All the testimonies gathered to this day demonstrate the professionalism and courage of the security agents who were on the ground on November 13. Hundreds of people were saved thanks to (these agents') intervention."

Shortly after the theater's response, Hughes apologizes for his original comments. "I humbly beg forgiveness from the people of France, the staff and security of the Bataclan, my fans, family, friends and anyone else hurt or offended by the absurd accusations I made," Hughes atones. "My suggestions that anyone affiliated with the Bataclan played a role in the events of November 13 are unfounded and baseless -- and I take full responsibility for them."


April 13: The first concert at the Bataclan since the November attacks is finally announced: Libertines frontman Pete Doherty, scheduled to play on Nov. 16, 2016. Senegalese star Youssou N'Dour and his Super Etoile de Dakar band are announced for the reopened venue's second show, on Nov. 18. Despite the news of the upcoming concerts, the managers say in a statement that "no exact reopening date has as yet been fixed."

Oct. 7: Charity A Peaceful Noise announces that the night before Doherty's scheduled concert at the Bataclan on Nov. 16, a memorial concert will be held at London's O2 Shepherds Bush Empire. Supergrass' Gaz Coombes, Maximo Park, Frank Turner and Travis' Fran Healy are announced as performers, with proceeds going to The Nick Alexander Memorial Trust -- named after the band's merchandise manager, slain during the attacks -- and the Sweet Stuff Foundation of Josh Homme, the EODM drummer who was not on tour with the band during their Bataclan performance.

Oct. 28: Nearly ready to reopen, the Bataclan reveals its new facade. Though the inside is clearly still a work in progress, the name of the venue is restored to the marquee in large red letters.


Nov. 3: The Bataclan announces that on Nov. 12, four days ahead of the scheduled Pete Doherty gig, rock legend Sting will instead play the first concert of the re-opened venue. "In re-opening the Bataclan, we have two important tasks to reconcile," Sting says in a statement published on his website. "First, to remember and honor 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."

I humbly beg forgiveness from the people of France, the staff and security of the Bataclan, my fans, family, friends and anyone else hurt or offended by the absurd accusations I made

Read More: : EODM's Jesse Hughes apologizes for Bataclan comments: "I humbly beg forgiveness from the people of France" | https://www.brooklynvegan.com/eodms-jesse-hughes-appologies-for-bataclan-comments-i-humbly-beg-forgiveness-from-the-people-of-france/?trackback=tsmclipI humbly beg forgiveness from the people of France, the staff and security of the Bataclan, my fans, family, friends and anyone else hurt or offended by the absurd accusations I made

Read More: : EODM's Jesse Hughes apologizes for Bataclan comments: "I humbly beg forgiveness from the people of France" | https://www.brooklynvegan.com/eodms-jesse-hughes-appologies-for-bataclan-comments-i-humbly-beg-forgiveness-from-the-people-of-france/?trackback=tsmclip