“Val Wiseman as a genuine jazz singer has few peers – warmth, swing, blues sympathy, impeccable intonation and sincerity of delivery rarely encountered in such generous detail.” Ken Rattenbury – The Jazz Rag

Val Wiseman’s remarkable career began in the midlands and owes much to early influences in music and drama and the opportunity of working with some of Britain’s legendary bands. Alex Welsh, Humphrey Lyttelton, Monty Sunshine and Kenny Baker were quick to notice her potential and featured her on their tours and broadcasts. Her growing reputation led to a starring role in a new Billie Holiday tribute, Lady Sings The Blues with a team of top British players. The show and album won critical acclaim, with television and concert appearances worldwide and for Val, an army of new fans.

Her first solo album Just For A Thrill was released in 2003 to enthusiastic reviews and in 2008 Val’s work was rewarded when she was voted best British vocalist in the British Jazz Awards.

At this show, Divas of Swing, performed on Saturday 15th October 2022 at the Dunn Village Hall, Rushlake Green, Val pays tribute to the singers who have inspired her throughout her career featuring songs performed by Ella Fitzgerald, Billie Holiday, Peggy Lee, Anita O’Day and Sarah Vaughan.

Val will be accompanied by Nigel Fox on Piano, Simon Thorpe on Bass, Eric Ford on drums and special guest Art Theman on Tenor Sax.


Art Theman

Art Themen was involved in the traditional jazz scene in Manchester in the late 1950s. A member of the award-winning Cambridge University jazz band from 1958 to 1961, he became involved in the early London blues scene, playing alongside Alexis Korner, Jack Bruce, Mick Jagger and Chuck Berry. He fronted the Stan Tracey quartet for 20 years from 1976. Key influences are Sonny Rollins and Dexter Gordon.

Art has toured worldwide and played and recorded with many US and British luminaries. A busy and sought-after musician who nowadays is most often seen on stage with many of the best of Britain’s top jazz players such as Alan Barnes, John Donaldson, John Critchinson, Dave Newton, Georgie Fame, Don Weller, Mornington Lockett, among many others.

Art Themen is a player who is known for his originality and individual style and joins Val on this show as her special guest.