On Friday 6 and Saturday 7 July, Westlands Entertainment Venue welcomes headline performances in its Ballroom from renowned artists: Claire Martin OBE, the Wessex Big Band and Ronnie Scott’s All Stars. An acoustic performance space will also run in the venue’s Lounge Bar area.

Claire Martin OBE

Claire Martin, OBE, performs during the Friday evening session. Claire is a recording artist and BBC Radio 3 presenter who has spent the last 30 years performing jazz to worldwide critical acclaim: winning the British Jazz Awards seven times. She is also a featured soloist with the BBC Big Band and BBC Concert Orchestra amongst other bands. Jazz Times USA state that, “She ranks among the four or five finest female jazz vocalists on the planet.”

The Wessex Big Band performs on Saturday afternoon, bringing their wide repertoire of popular music from the 1930s to present day. Having previously toured Europe and the USA the band have a catalogue of over 300 music scores, offering a diverse programme at any given performance. The band was founded in 1976 and is based in Yeovil.

On Saturday evening the Ronnie Scott’s All Stars perform a repertoire of jazz music. Made up of house musicians from the renowned Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club in London, the group is led by the Club’s artistic director, James Pearson (piano) and features musicians Sam Burgess (bass) and Pedro Segundo (drums) as well as vocalists such as Natalie Williams.

Rebecca Thomas, Events Manager at Westlands Entertainment Venue, said, “When we decided that we wanted a Jazz theme for this year’s festival we knew we have to bring in some big names. Who knew we’d be lucky enough to bring such stellar, world-renowned talent in our second year? Anyone who has visited Ronnie Scott’s in London knows the quality that the All Stars will bring and Claire Martin promises a stunning set to kick off the festival. We are also delighted to support local talent with the spectacular Wessex Big Band.”

Entry to these performances, as part of the Somerset Gin Festival, starts from £9.50. Visitors can also sample the 100+ gins on offer whilst enjoying these performances.

The Somerset Gin Festival takes place on Friday 6 & Saturday 7 July at Westlands Entertainment Venue – with various time slots available. To book tickets visit, call 01935 422884 or visit the Box Office at Westlands Entertainment Venue or The Octagon Theatre.