Sophia Loren will be a five-time godmother for MSC Cruises when she christens the MSC Poesia at midnight on April 5 in Dover, England. It will be the first launch of an MSC ship outside of Italy.

The ceremony will include performances by opera singer Andrea Bocelli, singer/songwriter KT Tunstall and jazz artist Peter Grant.

The 2,550-passenger ship is a sister ship to the MSC Orchestra and MSC Musica, and the ninth ship in MSC's fleet.

Following the event, the Poesia will embark on a 13-day cruise from Dover to Venice, calling in Ireland, Portugal, Spain, Croatia, and Italy. Venice will be the ship's homeport for summer 2008.

To contact reporter Johanna Jainchill, send e-mail to [email protected].

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