From JFK to Marlon Brando: The secret world of Madame Claude, the "Steve Jobs of sex"!
All is revealed in William Stadiem's biography: 'Madame Claude: Her Secret World of Pleasure, Privilege and Power'
Madame Claude, one of the most powerful brother keepers in the world with a glamorous bevy of call girls, died in 2015 at the ripe old age of 92 years. Given that she serviced some of the most famous men in the world of glamour and politics, it is no wonder that she also knew about their secret needs and desires.
Author William Stadiem, who interviewed Madame Claude before her death, recently penned a biography titled, 'Madame Claude: Her Secret World of Pleasure, Privilege & Power'. In the biography, he notes down the conversations he had with her. He also tracked down Claude’s friends, confidantes and former clients among others in order to shed more light on the life that she lived. William was introduced to Claude in the ‘80s through a mutual friend in Los Angeles after she fled her native France in 1977 over tax-related woes.
As reported by New York Post, William noted that Claude was ready to spill the beans on what goes on behind the closed doors. “She’s probably the most successful self-made woman in France since Coco Chanel,” he said. “She came out of nowhere and created a business. She basically invented the call girl. She was the Steve Jobs of sex. She harnessed technology and romance together, becoming the world’s greatest matchmaker … And boy, did she have stories to tell … She was ready to tell her tale.”
William noted that Claude had a very normal life while growing up. She grew up in the small town of Angers where her father ran a food cart at a local train station. She arrived in Paris in the 1950s and decided to become a prostitute to make her ends meet. She later decided to start a business of her own. Claude was a sharp woman who knew just what was needed in order to help her high-class prostitution ring thrive and that is exactly what changed her life.
“Madame Claude thought, ‘Why should people go out to the streets to find girls when they could just call me?’” said William. “She pioneered the concept of a ‘call girl’ and got very, very rich in the process. “So if a powerful businessman was coming in and got lonely in his hotel, he could call the concierge and that person would then call Madame Claude. She would then set up a rendezvous … And she was flying girls all over the world to meet with the rich and famous … She became known as the ultimate experience in France for luxury romance.”
These “Claudettes” were different from other French escorts. Claude knew what she wanted to differentiate her business from the rest of the world. She preferred statuesque, supermodel-gorgeous women who either came from upscale families or were at least trained to appear so.
“Madame Claude had a thing about size,” he said. “She loved big. Bigger was always better … She wanted women to start at 5-8 or 5-9. She wanted tall, she wanted skinny and she wanted natural. She was not interested in bad teeth, bad skin or bad hair … She rarely, rarely sent her girls for plastic surgery.”
It wasn't long enough that some of the high-profile people got to know about Claude and her business. As it turns out, President John F. Kennedy took an interest. “At first Madame Claude did not want to do it,” William claimed. “She was worried the eyes of the world would watch … But she was talked into believing it was her civic duty …She asked, ‘What kind of woman would he want? He had the most beautiful woman in the world who was his wife. He really loved women and it was hard for him not to love them."
William also claimed that Frank Sinatra was a client of Claude’s. “He wasn’t a seducer. He didn’t want a big romance. Most of the men really wanted to get involved with the girls and they did. Frank had work to do. He had singing. And that always came first," he said. However, the most difficult client to please was Marlon Brando, according to Claude. “He always liked very exotic women,” he said.
He continued, “That’s why he moved to Tahiti … That’s the kind of women he wanted. So she had to find someone who was extremely exotic. And he wasn’t that much interested in sex so much. He liked to lecture the girl on the inequalities of the world … That was his idea of seduction … to convince them of all the wrongs in the world that were going on that needed to be right … They had to be open to change and be very liberal.”
Despite being charged with tax evasion in her later years, Claude returned to France during the mid-1980s. She was arrested on the outstanding charges and sentenced to a short prison term. She attempted to launch another call girl network, only to be arrested again. William noted that Claude spent her final years alone in a nursing home. She did try to connect to her estranged daughter but the duo fell apart soon. “She died alone,” he said. “The only people who came to her funeral were five gay hairdressers … I think not working is what really killed her. She eventually just faded away.”