Photos show the Bataclan theater moments before Paris attack

Just music fans enjoying some garage rock.


Joey Keeton


Posted on Nov 18, 2015   Updated on May 27, 2021, 3:29 pm CDT

Before ISIS attacked downtown Paris with coordinated, deadly violence on Friday, a packed crowd gathered in the Bataclan theater to see California’s Eagles of Death Metal. The show would come to an abrupt end when gunfire opened in the audience, before three heavily armed ISIS recruits went for higher ground and shot down at the panicked crowd from the balconies. 

Eighty-nine of the 129 deaths took place inside the Bataclan. And a member of the U.K.-based Vantage News service, who goes by the name “BestImage,” snapped a photo that proves the “before” scene of a tragedy can be almost as heartbreaking as what came next:

The Daily Mail got the exclusive release on that photo, and others that BestImage took. The loose, celebratory vibe captured in the Bataclan couldn’t be farther from the confusing hell that it’d soon become within the span of just a few minutes.

While the Daily Mail has more of BestImage’s photos, concert photographer Manu Wino was also at the event. He was there to do what his Facebook page, Twitter account, and website indicate that he does quite a bit: live photography. 

He’s opted to post them in a Facebook album, along with a message:

Ces photos sont libres de droits, merci de ne pas les modifier, ni recadrage ni retouche supplémentaire.
Par respect pour les victimes, merci de n’en faire aucun usage commercial. Zip de la série disponible sur simple demande.
Peace, Love & Death Metal
These pictures are copyright free, do not change them, resize them or anything…
No commercial use should be done with these pictures by respect to the victims. Zip file of the set available on demand.
Peace, Love & Death Metal

[Placeholder for embed.]

Plenty can be found in the form of photos, videos, phone calls, and security footage that showcases the horror experienced in Paris last week. These images capture something different: The joy experienced that night. 

H/T the Daily Mail | Photo via Pepsiline/Flickr (CC BY SA 2.0)

Share this article
*First Published: Nov 18, 2015, 1:38 am CST