Jade Goody's life inspires opera

Reality star Jade Goody's life story has been turned into an opera by playwright Afsaneh Gray

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Jade Goody

Jade Goody

Jade Goody's life story has been made into an opera.

The late TV star has inspired playwright Afsaneh Gray to pen a dramatic stage production called 'And the Crowd (wept)', which will focus on the outspoken star's rise to fame, tumultuous love life, race row and battle with cancer.

Jade - who shot to fame on 'Big Brother' in 2002 - polarised public opinion and the "heightened drama" of her life lent itself perfectly to the opera format.

Afsaneh told The Independent newspaper: "I was a medical secretary just at the time when Jade Goody got ill with cancer, and the two women I was working with were coming in everyday with The Sun and OK! magazine.

"And they took really opposing ideas of her. One was like, 'Poor Jade, she's a mother-of-two she's dying of cancer.' And the other was like, 'She's a racist, she deserves everything she gets.' Everyone has an opinion about her."

The opera is directed by Pia Furtado and is being conducted by Adam Gatehouse, the editor of Live Music at BBC Radio 3.

Three different women will take turns playing Jade, as well as a critical commentator and a sympathetic voice, with everything tied together by a narrator.

Afsaneh explained: "The fairytale narrative is that there's this girl who always looks up to the heavens and dreams of being a star. And the final conceit is that she becomes a star, but it's not what she wanted. I think it's quite moving."

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