History

The history of El Molino begins in 1898, when the owner of the tavern La Pajarera, a modest hut situated at the corner of Vila Vilà with Rosal, sick of rowdy drunken sailors and builders, sells his business for 100 pesetas. The new owner, an Andalusian who had come to Barcelona to make his fortune, changed the name to La Pajarera Catalana and mounted a small stage. After three years, the new venue was offering a stable programme of musicals, an a la carte restaurant and even a free car service to facilitate the short journey from Las Ramblas to the premises. La Pajarera Catalana in 1901 had found its way into the entertainment world of Paralelo Avenue.

After a brief flirtation with film under the name Gran Salón Siglo XX, in 1908 a new change of ownership occurs and it is renamed as the Petit Palais. The new business was designed to bring the evening shows of the cabarets in Paris, but in a Spanish version. These are the years of music hall, which takes over the Petit Palais and Paralelo, whose fame as an avenue that brings together the largest number of shows in Europe grows.

In 1910 the original building made of wood was subject to a major reform by the Barcelona Modernist architect Manuel Joaquim Raspall (1877-1937), which gives the interior of the premises a new configuration that is still visible today. The renovated theater is now called Petit Moulin Rouge, imitating the famous Moulin Rouge in Paris. Three years later, with the artistic agent Antoni Alstell as owner, the name was shortened to Moulin Rouge. When the architect Josep Alemany i Juvé places the emblematic rotating wings on the facade, in 1926, the Moulin Rouge becomes an icon of Paralelo.

The victory of the army in the Spanish Civil War entails a ban on French related names and on all adjectives that refer to communism, forcing the name to change again to El Molino, this time for the last time. The married couple Francisco Serrano, owner of the historic theater Bataclan, and Vicenta Fernandez buy the premises and the style of coffee & concert that had been lost in the previous period gradually returns.

From the forties onwards, El Molino emerges in the Paralelo as a unique theater with its own rules, offering a constant lesson in freedom, popular sublimation, of grandeur and healthy eroticism. These are the years of the legendary Bella Dorita, the first great star of this place. The turning of the blades of the mill set the pace of the city in the following decades and on its stage paraded legendary artists such as Lander and Leanna, Mary Mistral, Mirko, Piper, Johnson, Escamillo, Christa Leem, La Maña y Merche Mar , among many others.

El Molino wins, in 1976, the first edition of the FAD Sebastià Gasch prize paratheatrical arts, which celebrates innovation in the entertainment world. However, the highest form of recognition that El Molino could ever receive has been numerous signs of affection and support after its closure in 1997 that the residents and citizens of Barcelona have shown for the mythical coffee concert in Paralelo. Aware of the priceless historical and sentimental value that El Molino has to Barcelona, the company Ociopuro buys the small premises and in 2007 the reconstruction process began, returning illusion to Barcelona and its citizens.

In 2010, El Molino rises the curtain again on Paralelo and sets the bar for shows in Barcelona.

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Contact

Phone Number
+34 93 205 51 11
E-mail: info@elmolinobcn.com
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Where we are

Vila i Vilà street, 99th
08004 - Barcelona
Underground Lines 2 and 3, “Paral·lel” station
Bus 21, 88, 91, 121, D20, H14, V11, N0 and N6
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© El Molino 2016

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