Big Spender


Above: 25th Anniversary


Dame Shirley has fun, fun, fun with her home crowd

Here she comes! 

Com’è piccolo il mondo


Here is a short clip:

DSB singing in Italian

Com’è piccolo il mondo

(How Small Is The World)

Less than a minute of this song on vinyl

It sounds good – does any fan have the full song to share?

Loris Azzaro

Dame Shirley’s beautiful 1974 black sequinned gown, described on the previous page, was by this distinguished designer.


Loris Azzaro (1933 – 2003), was a French fashion designer.

He was born in Tunisia and came to Paris to set up his line in 1962. By 1968 his business was a huge success.

He was well known for making glamorous party dresses for the elite of French society. Often his creations featured ornate beading and daring cut outs.

Over the course of his long career he dressed numerous celebrities including Sophia Loren, Raquel Welch, Marisa Berenson, Claudia Cardinale, Isabelle Adjani, Nicole Kidman and, of course, Shirley Bassey.


Signature style

Azzaro released a wide range of products including women’s and men’s clothing lines and accessories as well as a selection of successful fragrances.


Loris Azzaro died at the age of 70 in Paris France.

In 2004 French designer Vanessa Seward took over as head designer of the Azzaro label.

They continue to release clothing but are now better known for their fragrance line.

Original Loris Azzaro vintage pieces are still very much in demand.

Web site:

Information from Wikipedia and other sources

The Black Sequinned Gown


BBC Television special, 1974



Christie’s catalogue page 32, lot 8.

Another fabulous gown description from Ian the Gowns Guru

The Black Sequinned Gown

This stunning gown was designed by Loris Azzaro for Dame Shirley in 1974. It’s a sexy number!

I feel that this creation may have started out as a private gown for DSB. She first wore it on her BBC TV special in 1974.

 It’s a stunning black sequinned gown, cut on the bias, with spaghetti straps.

Under TV lighting the dress has a sensual look to it, almost with a leather sheen!

Dame Shirley wore this gown for several appearances on television both here and abroad.

DSB later wore it on the front sleeve design for the 1984 photo shoot of her Towerbell album ‘ I am what I am ‘.



It was also worn at the 1987 BAFTA awards to sing a Bond medley to celebrate 25 years of Bond movies.

The dress was last worn in Germany in 1988.

We would love to hear from whoever bought this gown at the 2003 Christie’s auction, and know what became of it!


Extract from Christie’s catalogue:

Description & Notes

…black evening gown … a bias cut stage gown with low-cut back and fitted bodice with spaghetti straps, the black gauze ground embroidered over all with black sequins, the neckline inset with black net, labelled inside Loris Azzaro Paris.

Final Price


Images displayed with kind permission of Christie’s Images Ltd. © 2002