DANCERS from 125-year-old Paris cabaret Moulin Rouge have won three world records, including the most circular French Cancan kicks – 29 in 30 seconds.
A line of 44 showgirls wearing patriotic red, white and blue costumes performed the kicks on the street outside the theatre, earning them a place in the Guinness Book of Records, which has just launched its 60th edition.
A Moulin Rouge soloist, Greek Adonis Kosmadakis, won a world record by high-kicking behind his head 30 times in 30 seconds, one of the most complex moves of the French Cancan dance.
Another dancer, Frenchman Nicolas Pihiliangegedara beat his own 2010 record by performing 36 spinning splits in 30 seconds.
The chorus line, from the Féerie du Moulin Rouge show, failed in their attempt to beat a fourth record, for the most high-kicks in unison.
See them beat the world records here.
The Moulin Rouge already holds records for the most kicks – 720 in 30 seconds by a line of 30 dancers – and the most number of French Cancan splits performed in a row – 62 in 30 seconds performed by 30 dancers.
The Montmartre institution which is currently celebrating its 125th anniversary welcomes 600,000 visitors a year and was made famous in paintings by Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec. It has hosted stars including Edith Piaf, Charles Aznavour, Frank Sinatra, Liza Minelli, Mikhail Baryshnikov and Elton John.
Dancers at the Moulin Rouge – many of whom are Australian - must be at least 1,75m tall and be trained in classical or modern dance. They are not allowed to gain more than 2kgs after being hired, but they must be fit, performing two shows a night six days a week, often wearing heavy costumes.