Fran Hardcastle reports on the launch by Jamie Cullum of The Big Audition at Pizza Express Tuesday 26 July.
Pizza Express fully embraced every facet of modern technology last night to launch their nationwide talent contest, The Big Audition.
Not only was Pizza Express founder Peter Boizot there to watch Jamie Cullum launch the competition, the whole world was there too. Cullum performed not only to the room but to audiences watching on Facebook and Youtube with a set list determined by fan requests on Twitter.
Jamie's first gigs were at Pizza Express in Old Town in Swindon, earning £50, a pizza and a Peroni. His debut at Dean Street had A&R from Sony on one side of the room and Universal on the other. Cullum showed last night that, like all the major successes in music, he is a hugely entertaining showman. He and his band performed with a boundless contagious energy.
The Big Audition aims to find the next big thing in music, of all genres, holding auditions across the country for a prize of £5000 and gig at Pizza Express in Dean Street. Taking technology a step further, by advancing on the devices used in singing birthday cards, one of the more unusual prizes on offer is to become the music of the Pizza Express takeaway pizza box. I kid you not.