So last night Meyles and I put on our glad rags and sodded off to the Cessnock Performing Arts Centre to see a tribute to the life of Edith Piaf (Ay-dit Pyaff) in story and song.
Piaf was a very famous French singer and if her name is not familiar to you, you would certainly recognise her songs. She had an unmistakeable voice which carried with it the rawness of life growing up in the wrong end of Paris in the early 1900s. Born 1915 and died at 47 in 1963 (a month before I was born). Abandoned by her parents, she lived with her grandmother who managed a brothel. She began as a street singer and her voice opened doors for her to sing in posh clubs in Paris. She stood at 4’10” and what she lacked in height, she made up for in heart. She was described by her manager as a ‘pushy little sparrow’ and the name ‘Sparrow’ stuck with her. Piaf became famous around WWII. She lucked out with love and had her heart broken many times. One lover had the unfortunate name of ‘the Slasher’ and another was killed in a plane crash. Her voice was described as being the ‘soul of Paris’ and it seems this was true as when her voice was silenced by death, and she was deemd to have lived a life of public sin by the church, more than 5 million people visited her grave within a few days.
We enjoyed the performance last night and the immersion in all things French. I am now on the hunt for a CD of Edith Piaf as I really like her style. Click here to hear and see some of her music and movie trailer of her life.