Tone-deaf singer Florence Foster Jenkins’ story (and voice) is coming to our local stage

You might recall the real-life story of Florence Foster Jenkins, thanks to the 2016 biographical film starring Meryl Streep. Notoriously tone-deaf and oblivious to it, the New York heiress-turned-opera singer famously filled Carnegie Hall in the ‘40s despite her lack of talent, powering through on passion and some seriously supportive friends. As the title character, Streep helped catapult Jenkins’ story into mainstream consciousness, earning the film a handful of Oscar and Golden Globe nominations (including Best Actress and Best Picture)—and endearing the kooky character to us all. Jenkins’ manager, husband, and probably #1 supporter was played by the dashing Hugh Grant.

And now, Jenkins’ heartwarming true story is coming to Singapore this September, thanks to resident musical theater experts Sing’theatre. Directed by Samantha Scott Blackhall, Souvenir: A Fantasia on the Life of Florence Foster Jenkins will chronicle the heiress’ foray into opera, narrated fondly by her accompanist Cosme McMoon, who accompanied her on the piano for 12 years. You won’t be getting Streep herself; but who you can look forward to is British actress Leigh McDonald, and our very own Hossan Leong as McMoon. The show will be a cozy two-person period piece, filled with song, laughs, and a heck load of self-confidence.

We last saw Hossan Leong as a grumpy old man in Sing’theatre’s Forever Young, so we’re excited to see him transform into Jenkins’ adoring accompanist this time round. As for McDonald’s Jenkins, we’ll be bringing earplugs, just in case. The show runs Sep 19-29 at the KC Arts Centre, and tickets are available from $35 on SISTIC now.