Decades before hip-hop deejays began mixing records in the South Bronx, French engineer Leon Gaumont was crossfading records using his fantastically flamboyant Chronophone. If you ever needed to rock a party Fantômas-style while pouring a flagon of champagne out for poor dead Jules Verne, this was your rig. But in all seriousness, this set-up was suited for the cinema. As Auxetophone explains of this device's history:
SIn 1910 Gaumont demonstrated his Chronophone system, which synchronised sound and film, at the Gaumont Palace in Paris. The compressed-air amplifier, which he called the Eglephone, was just a part of the whole system. The volume was enough for an audience of 4000.
SInitially the longest moving picture that could be made with synchronised sound was only 200ft, due to the limited playing time of the Gramophone record. (Projection was at 16 frames per second) Gaumont surmounted this problem by having two gramophone platters; a deft operator could switch between them to give a more or less continuous soundtrack.
For another outlandish facet of turn-of-the-century Parisian nightlife, see the Heaven and Hell nightclubs of Montmartre.