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British-born singer and actress Jane Birkin dies age 76


British-born singer and actress Jane Birkin has died at the age of 76, according to French media.

Birkin was an influential figure across music, film and fashion, most notably for her collaboration with the late Serge Gainsbourg and lending her name to the Hermès Birkin designer hand bag.

French media have reported that she was found dead at her home in Paris.

Anne Hidalgo, the mayor of Paris, tweeted: “Jane Birkin, the most Parisian of the English has left us.

“We will never forget her songs, her laughter or her incomparable accent that have always accompanied us.”

Birkin rose to international stardom with her risqué projects with Gainsbourg before forging a long and varied career on her own.

The couple’s breathless song “Je T’Aime.Moi Non Plus” was widely kept from the airwaves because of its adult content but reached number onein Britain despite being sung in a foreign language.

Birkin pursued a solo career releasing several albums, often singing in both French and English, and her notable acting credits include Agatha Christie’s “Death On The Nile” and “Evil Under The Sun”.

She is also the inspiration for the Hermès Birkin hand bag, after fashion businessman Jean-Louis Dumas spoke to the actress and singer about her frustration at not being able to find a bag big enough for her daughter’s bottles during a flight from Paris to London in 1984.

Birkin bags have a host of celebrity admirers, with famous owners of the accessory including former US first lady Melania Trump, rapper Cardi B, pop star turned fashion designer Victoria Beckham and reality star Kim Kardashian.

Throughout her career, Birkin has also been involved in various humanitarian causes, including working with Amnesty International and Unicef. — dpa

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