Cairo joins international celebrations for France's Edith Piaf

Ahram Online , Monday 21 Dec 2015

On Saturday 19 December, the Cairo Opera House staged an evening commemorating French iconic singer Edith Piaf

Edith Piaf
Edith Piaf pictured on December 30, 1960, performing on stage at the Olympia concert hall in Paris. (Photo: AFP)

Joining the celebrations of the life and career of Edith Piaf, or Little Sparrow as her stage name Piaf indicates in French, the Cairo Opera House's small hall dedicated an evening to the iconic French singer.

On 19 December, the day that marks Piaf's birth centenary, singer Ketty Orzola, Pascale Rozier on piano and Patrick Rozier on clarinet reminded the audience of the late singer's beloved songs.

With tickets sold out days prior to the event, the small hall was filled to the brim with different generations. Some attendees were obviously delighted with the journey through memories, while younger listeners enjoyed revisiting the history of French music.

Orzola walked the listeners through Piaf's musical history with her smooth, mournful and dark timbre that was reminiscent of the early stages of the singer's career, before her voice became more raspy in Piaf's final years.

The evening included songs such as La Vie en rose, Padam... Padam..., L'accordeoniste, Mon Dieu, Non, je ne regrette rien, Hymne a l'amour, Sous le ciel de Paris, Mon amant de Sain Jean among many other known compositions.

During the performance, and before several songs, Orzola spoke about Piaf's life and the significance of each composition.

It was Milord that moved the audience the most as the listeners began to clap to the tune of this 1959 song with lyrics by Georges Moustaki and music by Marguerite Monnot.

Cairo's performance was one of the many celebrations commemorating Piaf held in France and across the world.

According to AFP, in Paris, "the new Philharmonie de Paris staged a one-woman show by French pop singer Camelia Jordana, while the Belleville's St Jean le Baptiste, the neo-Gothic church where Piaf was baptised, is holding a special mass and concert in her honour.

Earlier this year, the French National Library held a major exhibition dedicated to the singer, displaying more than 400 different objects from Piaf’s life. 

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