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10 July 2018

The Big Smoke Festival: The Voice Behind The Stars


This one-woman show tells the story of the most prolific ghost singer of all time, Marni Nixon: the best film diva you (almost) never saw. Dubbing for over 50 Hollywood films, she was the singing voice for stars such as Audrey Hepburn, Deborah Kerr, Natalie Wood and Marilyn Monroe. Featuring much-loved tunes from West Side Story, My Fair Lady and The King and I, this show is not to be missed.

In a classic story of old Hollywood, Marni Nixon had to sign her life away. She was forbidden from telling anyone who or what films she sang on. Luckily for her, Deborah Kerr (The King & I, An Affair to Remember), who she dubbed for extensively, ‘accidentally’ spilled the beans about Marni. ‘It happened last night!’, ‘Deborah tells a secret’ – these headlines lead to interviews with all the papers and even Time Magazine. But despite all of this notoriety, her work as the ‘ghostess with the mostess(t)’ is still mostly unknown.

Marni spent her whole dubbing career struggling for credit and royalties. She was paid only $420 for her work on The King and I, which is still one of the top selling albums of all time. After a long battle she was gifted a quarter of a percent by Leonard Bernstein himself for her work as Maria’s singing voice on West Side Story. Because of this, all ghost singers to this day must be credited and awarded royalty points accordingly.

Marni went on to star in Broadway shows, sing for Liberace, tour the world and host an Emmy award-winning kids show, but she only ever had one onscreen credit - The Sound of Music, where she plays Sister Sophia. This is Eliza’s first show that she has both written and starred in; but it being The Year of the Woman, she feels it is the perfect time to tell Marni’s incredible story.

Times & Prices

Tue 10 Jul, 7pm

Running Time
1 hour

Ticket Prices*
All tickets £20

*All prices are subject to availability, may only be available on certain performances and are subject to change without prior notice.