Venue Details

30 Star Starred
The Marsh Berkeley Arts Center
2120 Allston Way Berkeley, CA 94704
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12 events
1 review
13 stars
We sat at second last row. It was hard to hear sometime. If your hearing is not perfect, sit closer to stage.
Stereotypo: Rants and Rumblings at the DMV
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42 events
14 reviews
6 stars
Bring pillows for the hard plastic chairs.
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Reviews & Ratings

"The Songbird of Paris, Edith Piaf"
32 ratings
3.4 average rating
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79 events
16 reviews
15 stars
attended Nov 01 2012

talentless performer..... singing badly...would not recommend

also venue excessively noisy...

and music played pre-show was too loud, constant, unpleasant..

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234 events
221 reviews
23 stars
attended Nov 24 2012

Well, we both found ourselves nodding off, despite a caffeine bev. prior, so guess it was ok, but not engrossing. Her singing voice was fine, but sometimes her speech was a bit hard to distinguish with ambient noise, and her life story just...continued

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367 events
70 reviews
73 stars
attended Nov 10 2012

Tremendous insights into the life and times of Edith Piaf. Well-written and performed, although the timing in the opening duo section needs to be relaxed and the background noise in the Bar - although authentic - needs to be tamed.

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More Information


This play has a running time of one hour, with no intermission. It is recommended for audiences ages 13 and over. 

“Joni Takanikos gives a simple, truthful performance as “Le Mome Piaf” (The Little Sparrow) telling Piaf’s unique story of hardship, fame, art and love. The play is elegantly written by Martha Furey, and features several of Piaf’s songs soulfully sung a capella.” 

- South Whidbey Record 

The Marsh Berkeley is proud to present “The Songbird of Paris, Edith Piaf,” a one-act play written by Martha Furey.

Edith Piaf, the iconic French singer, sits on a park bench in Belleville, the working class neighborhood of her impoverished childhood, wrapped in a blanket against the cold. Knowing she is nearing the end of her life, she shares her vast triumphs and hair-raising tragedies with us the audience, as though we represent the ghosts of her past. It’s a wild ride, a final reckoning: funny, romantic, raw, passionate, sensual. Her famously heart-rending songs are performed a cappella, an evocation of the young Piaf busking on the streets of her beloved Paris.

Playwright Martha Furey is known for capturing the essence and depth of some of the world’s most engaging and compelling women (Emily Dickinson, Frida Kahlo) in her nine one-woman plays. She wrote “Songbird” specifically for Takanikos, a singer-songwriter who lives on Whidbey Island, near Seattle, where the two met over 20 years ago.