France Gall

Birth Name:
Isabelle Geneviève Marie Anne Gall
Birth Date:
October 9, 1947
Birth Place:
Paris, France
Death Date:
January 7, 2018
Place of Death:
American Hospital of Paris, Neuilly-sur-Seine, Hauts-de-Seine, France
Cause of Death:
Severe infection complicated by cancer
Cemetery Name:
Cimetière de Montmartre
Claim to Fame:
France Gall was a French yé-yé singer who first rose to fame in 1965 when, at the age of 17, she won the Eurovision Song Contest for Luxembourg. What little did she know at the time was the song that she won the Eurovision Song Contest, Poupée de Cire, Poupée de Son, was later adapted for the song My Way made famous by Frank Sinatra. Between 1973 and 1992 she collaborated with singer-songwriter Michel Berger who she later married. Although she had a long and successful career, it wasn't without it's troubles and tragedies. Serge Gainsbourg later plunged Gall into controversy when she had a massive hit with his sexually suggestive song, Les Sucettes (Lollipops), complete with promotional images of her dressed in a skimpy bikini and licking a lollypop. She said later she had been too young to understand the double entendre of the lyrics, and refused either to perform it or to work with Gainsbourg again. She had another major international hit in 1987 with the album Babacar – including the song Ella, elle l’a, her tribute to Ella Fitzgerald – with music and lyrics by her husband and musical partner Michel Berger, who died in 1992 aged 44. She retired from recording and performing in 1997, following the death from cystic fibrosis of their eldest child, Pauline. She devoted herself largely to humanitarian work until a comeback performance in a 2015 stage show based on her and her husband’s songs.

Fun Facts

Born Isabelle Gall in 1947, she was the daughter of a songwriter who had penned hits for Edith Piaf and Charles Aznavour.

When we think of Michel Berger, it is impossible to dissociate him from France Gall, who was his muse and his wife for years. But what few people probably know is that before his death the singer had started an affair with a German model, Beatrice Grimm. Many believe the stress of keeping the affair secret, the pressure to deliver new material and the fact that he stopped taking his medications for high blood pressure all contributed to his untimely death.

As the story goes, the singer took advantage of a few days of rest in his house in Ramatuelle with his partner, France Gall, and several of their friends. As often, he played several games of tennis against Marie-Françoise Buart, better known to the general public as Framboise Holtz, without knowing that he was going to lose his life only a few hours later. Exhausted, he collapsed on the court victim of a first heart attack. At one point, Michel abandons the game ” said composer and friend Michel Pelay. He sat on a bench along the court and then gets up saying to us: ‘It’s really not okay, I’m going back home’. “We don’t worry more than that, because we know he’s a little tired at that time.”

His relatives and especially France Gall failed to reason with him to call emergency services so that they could examine him. Victim of two new heart attacks in the evening, Michel Berger died at the age of 44, struck down in the middle of vacation. “The cardiologist tells us that he had three heart attacks before the arrival of help, which took an hour to come because of the traffic jams in Saint-Tropez”, continued those close to the singer. Upon arrival Michel was already dead.

Cemetery Information:

Final Resting Place:

Cimetière de Montmartre

20 Avenue Rachel

Paris, , 75018




Map of Cimetière de Montmartre in Paris, France
Map of Cimetière de Montmartre in Paris, France

Grave Location:

Division 29

Grave Location Description

Three graves from the intersection of Avenue de la Croix and Avenue Montmorency on the road directly across from Division 30 in roughly the center of the cemetery.

Grave Location GPS

48.88748450286802, 2.3295625324219738



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