Jean Cocteau & Darius Milhaud

Le Boeuf sur le Toit

Directed and Choreography by

T. Daniel & Laurie Willets

Le Boeuf sur le Toit

or The Nothing Doing Bar

Pantomime by Jean Cocteau


The year was 1920. The War was over. And, the roar was about to be heard. Life was free! In America, Prohibition was introduced. Pent-up energy was being released. Crime was about to take off. In this calm before the storm, Frenchman Jean Cocteau wrote his imagined view of an American Bar.

Who would walk thru the door of The Nothing Doing Bar? There is the inebriated Gentleman, the charlatan Bookie, the almost has-been Boxer, the Boxer’s sidekick Boy, the Lady-in-the-low cut gown, the flirtatious Red-haired Lady and the overseeing Barman. But wait! The frolic for this is ‘the nothing doing bar’ is interrupted by the arrival of the fuzz, - the police. Life must change! Only the rebellious Americans will have a thing or two to say about that! The story takes on a new intrigue.

Today, we can still see these characters frequenting a bar. And, while life has changed in the 90 years since the pantomime premiered in Paris, there is a familiarity about this pantomime. The relevance to today’s life is uncanny. Cocteau was a visionay-picturing in his mind a bar that was relevant for his time – relevant for all times.

The Nothing Doing Bar is alive and well – open every night – at least every time that T. Daniel Productions performs Milhaud’s jazzy, Brazilian-flavored music that entices these characters to hang out at Le Boeuf sur le Toit.


Help us bring this fascinating pantomime back to Chicago!

And may be to Paris!

"...offered a glimpse into the experimental, artistic, and intellectual climate
that existed in Paris around 1920....
It was an exhilarating performance delivered with expert timing and professionalism.
The audience was moved and astonished by the authenticity and character of the performance. ...
an extended standing ovation..."
Fiona Queen

Relive the climate of Paris in Chicago!

Donate to open the Nothing Doing Bar in Chicago!
and maybe Paris!