The BnF

Performing arts department

Bertrand René. Max Dearly and Mistinguett dancing the swaying waltz. BnF | Performing Arts Departement

The Performing Arts Department holds the traces of all forms of performing arts: theatre, circus, dance, puppets, mime, cabaret, music-hall, street art as well as cinema, television and radio. One of its missions is to preserve all types of documents created before, during and after a show: manuscripts, letters, models, scenery pieces, costumes and objects, photographs, audiovisual documents, posters, drawings and prints, programmes and press clippings as well as books and magazines.The Department also houses many archives and collections from personalities or institutions (performance halls, festivals, companies...). A service of the Performing Arts Department is settled in Avignon.

The reading room is open to the readers of the Research Library: academics, researchers, students, professionals in the field of performing arts, librarians.

Performing arts department:Practical information


Mazarine gallery

Mazarine gallery

Richelieu Library
58, rue de Richelieu
75002 Paris

Opening hours

Reading room opening hours
From Monday to Saturday Sunday
10.00am-6.00pm closed

Closed on public holidays:

  • 1st of January
  • Easter Sunday and Monday
  • 1 and 8 May
  • Ascension Thursday
  • Pentecost Sunday and Monday
  • 14 July
  • 15 August
  • 1 and 11 November
  • 25 December

Annual closing of the BnF sites located in Paris (François-Mitterrand, Richelieu and Louvois, Arsenal and Opéra Libraries): During the annual closing of the BnF, various operations are achieved on the BnF premises and public spaces: repair, maintenance or cleaning work. Each year, the sites mentioned above are closed about ten days from the end of August to the beginning of September. The 2018 closing dates will be announced later.

Consulting documents

These specific opening hours concern the documents housed at the Richelieu Library.

Requests collection and document release times
  Monday to Saturday
Requests collection 10:30, 11:30, 12:30, 13:30, 14:30, 15:30, 16:30
Document release 10:00 to 18:00

Average release length: 30 to 45 minutes after the requests collection.

An item requested after 15:30 will be delivered the day after, starting at 10 am.

During renovation work at Richelieu Library, some collections were moved to other sites of the BnF. These documents remain available at Richelieu Library within 24 to 72 hours. You can prepare your visit by reserving your documents in advance.

You need a reader's card to have access to the Research Library's documents.

In case there exists a copy of the document, you will be invited to consult it in priority. Consulting the original document is submitted to prior authorization.

Nothing but paper, lead pencils and personal computers is allowed in the reading rooms. The other personal belongings must be left in the cloakroom or in lockers at the entrance of the reading room.

Tuesday, December 6, 2016


Joël Huthwohl
Phone : 01 53 79 37 30
Fax : 01 53 79 37 33
Email :

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