Enjoy the Show; MIDLAND WOMAN WHO LOOKS AFTER CIRCUS VIPs the Cirque Du Soleil Is on Its Way to Birmingham for the First Time. ROZ LAWS Meets the Midland Woman Whose Task Is to Look after VIP Visitors Including Pop Stars, Royalty and Fashion Designers

Sunday Mercury (Birmingham, England), January 9, 2005 | Go to article overview

Enjoy the Show; MIDLAND WOMAN WHO LOOKS AFTER CIRCUS VIPs the Cirque Du Soleil Is on Its Way to Birmingham for the First Time. ROZ LAWS Meets the Midland Woman Whose Task Is to Look after VIP Visitors Including Pop Stars, Royalty and Fashion Designers


Byline: ROZ LAWS

IT'S a brave woman who stands up to a temperamental fashion designer - but then Charlie Cooper is made of no-nonsense Black Country stock.

She spends her working life mixing with celebrities as hospitality manager for Cirque Du Soleil, the dazzling theatrical spectacle on its way to Birmingham for the first time in its 20-year history.

Charlie's job is to look after the stars when they come to the show, but she is not fazed by them.

So when designer Giorgio Armani turned up to the first-night party in Milan without an invitation, she had no problems in turning him away.

'We had a strict guest list for that party and only a select few could get into the VIP area,' remembers 25 year-old Charlie.

'His name wasn't on it so I had to say: 'I'm sorry Mr Armani but you can't come in'.

'Next day, the local paper had him ranting about how this snotty-nosed English girl wouldn't let him in!

'Most people are charming, like Sir Elton John and Dame Judi Dench. One of my most extraordinary guests was an Arabian princess, who came to the show in Vienna.

'She had 70 ladies-in-waiting and all her bodyguards were female. Men weren't allowed anywhere near.

'Her father was talking about hiring the show and shipping it out to the Middle East for one night only as a treat for the children, in the same way that other people talk about hiring a video for the night.

'The princess spent 15,000 euros [pounds 10,000] on merchandise, soft drinks and food. Then she left me a 500 euro [pounds 350] tip and offered me a job. I was tempted but I love Cirque Du Soleil.'

Charlie was born and brought up in Wolverhampton and boarded at Moreton Hall school near Oswestry, Shropshire.

After her wealthy parents' divorce, her mother Marie Mosedale-Cooper - a former blackjack croupier and friend of brothel madam Cynthia Payne - moved to the Cotswolds village of Blockley to run the award-winning Lower Brook House hotel.

Charlie started her working life in San Francisco, booking bands for a music company. …

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Enjoy the Show; MIDLAND WOMAN WHO LOOKS AFTER CIRCUS VIPs the Cirque Du Soleil Is on Its Way to Birmingham for the First Time. ROZ LAWS Meets the Midland Woman Whose Task Is to Look after VIP Visitors Including Pop Stars, Royalty and Fashion Designers
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