AUDITIONS are being staged by Blackburn starmakers to find performers able to hit the high Cs, on the high seas.

Amy Toole and her team at Pop-Up Entertainment have been signed up to produce a series of show-stopping spectacles for cruise specialists Fred Olsen.

And now 300 hopefuls, in East Lancashire and London are set to try out for the coveted berths, aboard the 924-guest luxury vessel Braemar.

Amy, who grew up in Pleasington and is a seasoned cruise ship performer herself, said: "It's an amazing way to work and see the world - better in many ways than a West End booking.

"You get to wake up in a different country every night and take part in all different kinds of performances."

Working closely with her producer Billy Rowan and associate directors Dan Clift and Laura White, Amy has a number of themes in mind for their debut assignment, which begins in June.

The Roaring Twenties will be revived with a Great Gatsby themed show and there will be homages to favourites from the musicals, The Fifties, the Best of British and Northern Soul.

An eight-person show team - four male and four female - will be required for the contract. Another outfit with the same make-up must be assembled for a second sailing in November.

While the company has some candidates already in mind, the door is open to fresh recruits. Plans are being drawn up for auditions at Pineapple Studios in London and their own base in Tontine Street, Blackburn.

Helen Bennett, Fred Olsen entertainments manager, said: "The production team is made up of experienced performers, most of whom have worked for us in the past, and they are a fresh, young and highly-motivated company.

"We have tremendous confidence that Pop-Up will provide us with fresh and highly creative new shows and we look forward to working closely with them."

Before now Pop-up has also worked with P&O Ferries, the Trafford Centre and was behind Blackburn's festive parade.