By Emmelia Georgiou
Nicosia, Larnaca and Limassol are about to see what life is like in pink when the internationally acclaimed show Piaf! – which has left a success story behind in every country where it has been staged – plays at the start of next week.
Piaf! The Show was conceived and directed by the Nice-based theatrical maverick Gill Marsalla and stars the amazing Anne Carrere, who is considered to be Edith Piaf’s legitimate musical heir.
The show first premiered in 2015 and was inspired by the award-winning movie La Vie En Rose. In two 45-minute acts, it narrates the rags-to-riches story of the Parisian singer’s career through her unforgettable songs, complemented by a visual tapestry of previously unreleased photographs and images of well-known locations from the Edith Piaf era.
Marsalla first met future star Carrere when she auditioned for another of his productions. He was so captivated by her skills and natural charisma that he instantly offered her the role of Edith Piaf in his new production.
“I have worked in show business, on and off stage, for 25 years and have mounted shows around the world. But, to this day, Anne Carrere is my greatest artistic discovery. Don’t you dare touch or polish her, she is a diamond that you want to keep raw, such is the nature of her pure and natural talent,” says Marsalla of his leading lady. Equally impressed with Carrere are Piaf’s long-time collaborators, composer Charles Dumont and singer Germaine Ricord, who have described her skills as being “those of Edith Piaf at the peak of her career.”
As a performer, Carrere made her debut in large-scale musical theatre as the star of Piaf!. A native of Puget Ville, a small town in the south of France, she began preparing for a stage career in her early teens, studying voice, acting and a variety of dance styles at the renowned Salon-de-Provence art school. She later studied classical music, playing flute and piano. Before seriously pursuing her passion for the traditional French chanson, Carrere participated in numerous French talent competitions and TV shows, showcasing her singing and dancing skills in diverse styles including classical, jazz and breakdance.
Acclaimed in France, Brazil, Poland and the United States, and in more than 33 countries, Piaf! The Show has been a triumph wherever it has been presented, testifying to the famous songbird’s enduring popularity. The tour sold out in the most prestigious venues in the world. Carrere is also becoming a phenomenon on social networks. Her interpretation of ‘La Vie en Rose’ in the middle of a market in Porto Alegre was seen by a million people and shared more than 10,000 times in less than a week.
Piaf! The Show
Show dedicated to Edith Piaf. July 17. Skali Aglandjias, Nicosia. 9pm. €30. Tel: 22-462233
July 18. Larnaca Municipal Theatre. 9pm. Tel: 24-665795
July 19. Municipal Gardens Theatre, Limassol. 9pm. €30/25. Tel: 25-343341