People who love singing will have No Regrets about joining the cast of a special concert paying homage to the life and music of Edith Piaf.
Matthew Jones, musical director of Piaf – The Concert, is looking for singers from Bromley, Dartford, Greenwich and Lewisham to form the show’s choir.
News Shopper readers came together to create the large majority of the choir in Matthew’s last production, a musical tribute to Dusty Springfield, performed at Royal Albert Hall.
And the passionate conductor is hoping our music-loving audience will rise to the challenge once again.
He said: “Edith Piaf’s recordings were always in a big scale, it should be done that way.
“Most of choir last time were News Shopper readers – there’s lots of appetite for singing in that area.
“I believe anyone can learn to sing.
“A lot of people jump on that bandwagon, but I truly believe it.
“I’ve got people up to professional standard – we put a big choir together formed of beginners and professionals and we have to deliver a very high standard.
“The audience don’t care about the journey the choir has been on.
“All I need is enthusiasm and dedication.”
Matthew needs around 100 people to make up his choir, and rehearsals begin on February 11.
The concert will take place at Southbank Centre on March 13, with a very special guest star.
Matthew added: “June Brown (Dot Branning in EastEnders) will be narrating the story.
“We wanted an actress the public could relate to, someone who could give the story a bit of grit.
“June’s amazing – she’s 85 now and just made her comeback to EastEnders.”
Anyone over 16 is welcome to join the Piaf choir.
Celebrated hits including No Regrets and La Vie En Rose will feature in the show.
“Piaf never performed in the UK, so this is quite an exciting event.” Matthew added.
“She died when she was 47 but looked in her 70s.
“She had a very turbulent life, was riddled with arthritis and was a substance abuser.
“People said she was like two different people on and off stage – when she performed, you would never know she was ill.”
Matthew has been fascinated with Piaf for years.
He continued: “I’m a real fan of melodrama, as camp as it sounds, I love Piaf.
“She was the ultimate bearer of soul, the original Amy Winehouse.
“I’ve wanted to do this for many years - it’s what I’m all about.
“Now I’ve found the ideal lead singer, my sister.”
Matthew’s talented sibling, Eva Stanley-Jones, will be stepping up to the mic and leading the production.
If you would like to join the choir, call 0121 6322330 or 07941 918688.
Visit southbankcentre.co.uk for tickets to the concert.