Choreographers for the opening and closing ceremonies at the 2012 London Olympics are struggling to find enough men with rhythm to take part in next summer's spectaculars.
With a huge global audience predicted to watch the displays, organisers have had to put out a plea for males with a good sense of timing just over a month before the application window closes.
"We need more men – particularly if you have rhythm," reads the appeal on the website for the London Games. "This means those of you who can dance but also drum, or do any sport, job or hobby that involves keeping to time."
More than 10,000 have already applied, but together with the Paralympics' two ceremonies 20,000 will be needed for the events.
Volunteers do not need previous performance experience. Lord Coe, chairman of the Games' organising committee, yesterday called for people with "huge amounts of energy and a willingness to perform in front of a stadium audience and billions of people around the world" to sign up.
Those who put themselves forward must be available for an audition in February next year, followed by up to two or three rehearsal sessions of several hours each week from April onwards, as well as various day-long rehearsals in the three weeks leading up to each ceremony. Film director Danny Boyle is artistic director of the opening ceremony.