NEWS PAGE & BLOG


Hello one and all and welcome to my news page. Here you can see me as my two alter egos the ever efficient secretary Prudie Jones, Evette the Spivette and plain old little me as you catch up with all that is current in my world. Regrettably unlike Prudie my spelling is quite frightful at the best of times due to my dyslexia so I shall apologise now for anything which might be shamefully mis-spelt. In the mean time I hope you find this page fun, entertaining and informative and become a regular visitor to my site.

Chat soon & keep reading
Fiona Harrison
A Voice in a Million


Battle of Britain Week & Honouring the Queen!

Battle of Britain Day!

It’s been a strange week of mixed emotions as the nation said good bye to a great Queen and welcomed in a new King. It’s at times like these one can’t help but feel proud to be British and of our armed forces especially when it comes to seeing all the different military services doing their bit and coming together to honour the late Queen.

I was particularly moved by seeing the pictures of the queens coffin being taken through the streets of Edinburgh to the great kirk of St Giles’s cathedral. It’s been moving to see the different services carrying the coffin and paying their respects at different stages of the queens journey from Scotland to London; and not forgetting the final stage of the queen’s journey when the Royal

A Show for All Occasions!

Air Force carried the coffin from the aircraft at Northolt before making it’s way to Buckingham Place and the lying in state.

I heard on the news tonight the que is now five miles long and it’s a nine hour wait for any-one who wishes to file past and pay their final respects to the queen. We are living through extraordinary times.

As for me it’s been business as usual as I continue to perform Battle of Britain WAAF shows all this week with just a few rescheduled performances due to the nature of events. My shows have been going down extremely well which might have something to do with the countries mood. After the sad passing of our monarch people have been looking for musical escapism and you can’t really go wrong with sing-along songs from the 1940s.

Busy doing Nothing on the Farm!

This weekend I should have been in France performing for the Liberation Ball at the Salle Victor Lorier in the town of Bretteville l’ Orgueilleuse. However due to a double booking the event has been rescheduled to the 22nd October and it was only by chance I was able to squeeze them in. I’m fully booked for 2022 and where it had been my intention to have a few days in Normandy this weekend I’m literally going out on Friday 21st October  performing Saturday and coming

Dressed for the 50s at Stonehurst Farm!

straight back on Sunday 23rd before I embark on Halloween shows which will be taking me through to Remembrance and beyond into Christmas.

As a result I’m back in the recording studio this Sunday to pick up a revised new track of my 1920s Baby medley and I will also be catching up on paper work and prepping my costumes in time for my South coast tour. I’m going away on the 26th and I have a 1950s photo shoot scheduled for the 27th so much to do, but more news on that later.

Singing in the Sunshine!

Next week it’s all change as I move forward in time with a run of shows focusing on the music of the 1950s, 60s & 70s.

I shall leave my blog here tonight and enclose a few of my photos taken by Angela Adams durring last months photo shoot at Stonehurst Farm. Keep Following and Toodle Pip!

 

 

 


Remembering Her Majesty The Queen, Battle of Britain & A New Video!

Remembering the Queen in my ATS Uniform!

I’d like to begin my blog tonight by saying how sorry I am to hear about the Queen’s death. It came as a shock because she stood as a constant and all through my life time I have never known any other monarch. It sounds foolish but to me she almost appeared immortal so for her not to be here seems strange and unsettling. I’m so pleased the queen was able to enjoy her jubilee celebrations in June although we all knew her health was deteriorating. She devoted her life to service and we are now entering a new era. It will be interesting to see what the future will bring.

Happy Birthday Robert!

The world is in flux and more than ever we need stability. I hope King Charles III can give us that as we look to the future and remember her great reign. The Queen is dead long live the King!

Last Saturday I had the pleasure of performing for a 1940s Birthday party in Wheathampstead. It was a wonderful event as family and friends came together to celebrate Roberts 22nd Birthday. To begin with we had a shower of rain but that very quickly passed as I performed two forty-five minute sets and finished with some good old

All Set to Start Singing the 1940s!

fashioned Rock and Roll. We even had party games and a wonderful spread of homemade delights, which better still were all off ration!

This Saturday I was due to perform at the RAF Club in Banbury for their Battle of Britain Ball but out of respect for the queen the event has been postponed. As head of the Armed Forces a number of events have been cancelled including The Last Night of the Proms. We are all waiting tentatively for news of when the funeral will be which will be a day of morning.

Next week it’s Battle of Britain day on the 15th and as you might expect I have a full dairy of  WAAF shows to perform. I’m keeping my fingers crossed my shows will go ahead as planned and all will be well despite the nation being in morning. Later this month I’m heading down to the South

Joining in with the Party Games!

Coast and opening my tour at Danny House at Hurstpierpoint near Bighton. I’m also making the most of the opportunity and doing a 1950s photo shoot there with top photographer Angela Adams. Danny House is a wonderful location and I’m keeping my fingers crossed for good weather.

I’ve been really lucky to work with some great photographers this year and this week I was able to launch my new 1940s flicker book video which featured shots of me at The Black Country Living Museum. It only seems like yesterday I was performing for their 1940s event and you can see my video by clicking the link  below.

Dressed and Ready for Battle of Britain Day!

All the photos were shot on location on and off stage by photographer Mark Slater. I’m very proud of the video and it is a wonderful document of the weekend. Please like and share with your friends and thank-you for watching.

I also include a few shots taken at Roberts party by Tony Margiocchi.

That’s all my news for now. Keep Following Toodle Pip and Bye for Now!

 

 


The Last Days of Summer & The Pre – 1988 at The Buckinghamshire Railway Centre!

Between Sets at The Pre – 1988 Show!

Once again this week has whizzed by and I’m struggling to fit any more shows in for the year. I never thought I would say it but I appear to be fully booked and the few days I do have left seem to be taken up with hair appointments, travelling, meetings and video editing. 2022 is rapidly slipping away and I’m now concentrating on selling shows for 2023 and 2024 while enjoying the last few days of summer.

This week I had the pleasure of performing at The Buckinghamshire Railway Centre and working along side photographer Tony Margiocchi. The

Going Back to the 1920s!

railway had engaged me to perform 3 x 45 minute costume shows daily for their Pre – 1988 Vintage Vehicle Rally. The event was packed and over the course of the day I sang songs from the 1920s through to the 1970s as visitors enjoyed train rides and the various vintage vehicles on display.

I love performing at multi period events  as it allows me to be more creative musically and I can wear a variety of different fashion styles. On this occasion I opened up with the 1920s & 30s, proceeded with the 1940s and concluded with the 1950s, 60s & 70s. Out of all my sets I think my 1950s, 60s & 70s show proved to be the most

Rock & Roll is Here to Stay at Quainton Railway Station!

popular as people sang along and danced to my music.

These days social media is such an important part of the way the world turns it’s important not to be left behind. Everything needs to be documented and I was very lucky that Tony was available to join me. Sometimes I find having to do photos on top of everything else I’m doing can be a little too much. Tony did me proud and I now have a wonderful collection of shots which are doing the social media rounds as we speak.

Waiting on the Platform in my 1950s Florals!

Tomorrow I’m performing for a private 1940s party in Wheathampstead and then it’s full steam ahead towards Battle of Britain Day on the 15th September. Today I performed two WAAF shows back to back and on Saturday 10th September I’m in Banbury performing at the RAF Club for their Battle of Britain Ball songs from the 1940s, 50s, 60s & 70s.

I shall leave you with a few of Tony’s photos from Monday’s Pre – 1988 show.

Keep Following Toodle Pip and Bye for Now!

All Aboard in the 1940s Style!


All Set for the Pre-1988 Show, Tea at The Poplars & Remembering Lynda Styan!

A Celebration for the life of Lynda Styan

It’s been a difficult week. I’ve been performing shows every day but my thoughts have been with Lynda and her family especially with her sister Nicola as today was the day when we all came together to attend Lynda’s funeral. It’s especially tragic when some-one as young, beautiful and as talented as Lynda is taken from us all too soon. Cancer is an appalling illness and today’s funeral service was a lovely tribute to her life.

Her service took place today at 2pm at New Southgate Crematorium and included a wonderful selection of music which began with a recording of Al Bowlly singing “The Very Thought of You” and a couple of recordings of Lynda performing “Dream a Little Dream of Me” , “Running Wild” and “Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend”.

Lynda always made a point of looking her very best. She always

Looking My Best for Lynda!

wore her heels and never went anywhere with-out her lipstick and make-up. In fact she was mad about lipsticks and always invested in the very best cosmetics. A couple of years ago she bought me a selection of blue eye shadows but they weren’t any old eye shadows but none other that Dior. I’ve almost used them all up now but when ever I put my make-up on I always think of Lynda.

No matter how she felt Lynda always made an effort and dressed up what ever the occasion. Today I wanted to look my best for her which was why I choose a Dior inspired out-fit.

After the service the wake was held at the West Lodge Park Hotel where Lynda would often visit for afternoon tea. As many of Lynda’s friends were entertainers we were all asked by her sister to perform a number in her honor. I sang “If I had

Pink Roses Lynda’s favorite Colour!

a talking Picture of You” as Lynda adored the 1920s and was famous for capturing that crazy Jazz age spirit.

Rest in peace Lynda I’m going to miss you enormously and I feel very privileged to have known you xxx

In show business the show never stops playing and no matter how we feel personally as show people we make sure that the show always goes on.

All Set for The Pre-1988 Vintage Vehicle Rally!

Tomorrow I’m in Kempston performing songs from the 1950s, 60s & 70s and then this Monday I’m performing for the Pre – 1988 Vintage Vehicle Rally which is taking place at the Buckinghamshire Railway Centre, Station Road, Quainton, Aylesbury, HP22 4BY. I shall be performing three shows daily on the Monday. 11am – WW1 – 1920, 1pm – 1930s & 40s, 3pm – 1950s, 60s & 70s. Click the link for more details and I hope very much you can all make it along as it’s promising to be a fantastic show and I have three fabulous shows planned!

https://bucksrailcentre.org/product.php/94/august-bank-holiday-classic-vehicle-special/12059b1179e55cae0136ab2c55803bc9

On Stage at The Poplars Garden Centre!

This week I also played at The Poplars Garden Centre in Toddington for the first time. I was engaged to perform for their vintage high tea afternoon which proved to be a great success. It sold out extremely quickly and I had been booked to perform my “Don’t Sit Under the Apple Tree” show a selection of songs from the 1930s, 40s & 50s. This was the first time the garden centre had ever done anything like this and I’ve already been engaged to perform a “Vintage Christmas Spectacular” on 21st November. Tickets haven’t gone on sale yet but the interest has been enormous and I’m already looking forward to it.

I shall leave you with a few pictures. If any-one would like to make a donation to Help Musicians which was Lynda Styan’s chosen charity then please do so by clicking the link.

www.justgiving.com/lynda-styan

This charity helped Lynda out during the pandemic.

Keep Following Toodle Pip and Bye for Now! 😉

 

 

 

 


Stonehurst Farm, Becoming a Land Girl, Afternoon Tea & Photographing the 1940s!

Opening With The Fleets in Port Again!

I’d like to begin by thanking every-one for your kind messages wishing Paul well as he get’s over his ear infection. It’s a particularly nasty one, as Paul continues with his course of antibiotics. Paul thanks you all for your good wishes and he looks forward to getting well and singing for you all again very soon.

It’s such a tragedy Paul wasn’t able to be with me last weekend as we had booked a few extra days and I had arranged for us to do a photo shoot on the Monday with photographer Angela Adams. Despite Paul’s absence it was an amazing weekend, as Stonehurst Farm went back in

Dressed for My Stars & Stripes Show!

time to the 1940s. I had been booked to perform 3 x 45 minute costume shows daily plus 2 x 45/60 minute sets for the Saturday night dance. Stonehurst is a wonderful venue and it is a working farm where children can get up close and meet the animals.

I’ve never known it so hot and I’m pleased I had decided to perform only two uniform shows at the start of each day. That’s the wonderful thing about having 11 x 1940s shows. I have lots of choice and it’s good to mix things up and not do the same show plan every-time.

Inside the Motor Museum!

This year I concentrated more on 1940s glamour and it was good to add in my new musical arrangements. I forget sometimes just how many wonderful arrangements I have. All down to my musical arranger Richard Whennell of course and his incredible genus. I was so pleased to perform “Busy Doing Nothing” along with a full re-masted version of “I’ll Be With You in Apple Blossom Time”.

It’s been on my mind for some time to perform a Land Army show and although there are a lot of

Setting Up in Shirt Sleeves!

numbers from the 1940s which would fit this brief it takes time for me to invest in the songs and get the arrangements completed and through production. Musical arrangements really matter to me and I’m such a stickler. “Busy Doing Nothing” and “I’ll Be With You in Apple Blossom Time” are two numbers I would include in a Land Army show plus I have a whole list of others I hope I can get through in time for next summer.

Richard is the best in the business and he is worth waiting for. Like all talented people he is extremely busy and greatly in demand. However I

Dressed in my Pearly Queen Costume for Underneath the Arches!

can’t think of anything more exciting than a new Richard Whennell musical arrangement. He has the extraordinary talent of being able too turn ordinary songs into something sensational and I’m extremely proud of all his arrangements.

Talking of talented people I was thrilled to work with photographer Angela Adams on Monday. I had engaged her to document more of my costumes from the 1940s and 50s. I’m always looking for interesting venues and this time I wanted the girl next door look rather than Hollywood movie star. I like to work on location and Stonehurst Farm has so much to offer not

Between Shows in the Farm Shop!

only because it’s a working farm but because it also has it’s own motor museum too.

Social media is a hungry animal and this time I was keen to capture a collection of shots of me as a Land girl with the animals, on hay stacks and with tractors ect. It’s important to get the shots right because later I can then develop them into videos and I have a couple of projects in mind I want to use these shots for.

I’ve had the pleasure of working with Angela Adams on a number of occasions and it’s

Land Army at Stonehurst Farm!

important to work smart and not waist time. We work well together and on this occasion were able to capture eight of my out-fits combining jodhpurs with dungarees along with a couple of my pretty 1940s dresses too. As yet I haven’t seen the photos but I hope to have them next week and I look forward to sharing them with you.

Since returning home I’ve hit the deck running and I’ve not stopped performing as I continue with “Song for Summer” and vintage shows. This weekend I’m taking a little time out to catch up on

Down on the Farm!

house work and sort out my costumes as I haven’t had time to unpack properly from the weekend.

Next Tuesday I will be performing at The Poplars Garden Centre, Harlington Rd, Toddington, Dunstable LU5 6HE, for afternoon tea, songs from the 1930s, 40s & 50s. For more details please click the link below as this is something new and we hope the afternoon will be a great success. I’m booked to perform my “Don’t Sit Under the Apple Tree” show and I already have a wonderful show planned. To book a place please follow the link below and it will be delightful to see you.

Vintage Afternoon Tea

Dressed for the 1950s by the Pumps!

Next Friday is Lynda’s funeral. The family have asked for no flowers but if any-one would like to make a donation to do so to Help Musicians. This charity helped Lynda during the pandemic and donations can be made by clicking the link below. Lynda was my best friend and the world has lost one of it’s loveliest stars. I will miss her enormously!🙏

www.justgiving.com/Lynda-Styan

That’s all my news for now. I shall leave you with a few of my photos from the weekend.

Keep Following. Toodle Pip and Bye for Now!

Out in the Field!

 


Back from Bletchley Park and Singing the 40s at Stonehurst Farm!

All Set For Bletchley Park!

I’d like to begin my blog tonight by thanking every-one who came to see me open Bletchley Park’s Concert Series last Saturday. I’d like to say a special thank-you to all the BP staff who made this such a great event. The sun shone all day and it was wonderful to see you all. I had been looking forward to this show immensely due to the fact I had commissioned a number of new musical arrangements which I was keen to perform.

It can be a little nerve racking performing a song for the first time but I’m pleased to say all my

The Fleets in Port Again”

rehearsing paid off and I didn’t put a note or word wrong. I opened my second half with “Busy Doing Nothing” from the 1949 film “A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court” which went down extremely well along with my new arrangement of “Apple Blossom Time”.

Last year I performed my ATS “We’ll Meet Again” show and this time I returned with my Wrens show “The Fleets in Port Again” plus “In the Mood” as I changed into my Hollywood glamour for my second set. I was keen to included the song “The Girl in the Little Green Hat”, which is a

The Girl In The Little Green Hat!

charming, jaunty little number from the 1930s. I first heard this song performed by Will Young in the film “Mrs Henderson presents” and I thought it would be a great addition to my Wrens show.

The song speaks of “A lake in a park, and a house by a lake, there’s a girl in the house in the park by the lake, and the girl in the house by the lake in the park, is the girl in the little green hat”. This made me think of Bletchley Park which was why I was keen to commission the song and have a backing track made. I wanted the song to work in

Setting Up Back Stage Before the Show!

context of my Wrens show which was why I changed a couple of the words to mention a Wren instead of a girl. The song now tells the story of a Wren on her day off wearing a little green hat. This has been a great addition to my show and works perfectly.

I was thrilled that photographer Harry Purdom was able to join me at Bletchley Park to document my show. Harry worked with me last year and we were able to produce a flicker book video using his photos while I sang “Long Ago and Far Away”

Out and About before the Show!

as the sound track. It’s my intention to produce “The Girl in the Little Green Hat” later this year although trying to get the shots on Saturday wasn’t easy. The sun was very intense and it wasn’t until later in the day when the sun started to go down we were able to get the shots we were after.

It’s been an extraordinary summer with soaring temperatures and endless sunshine. I’m investing a lot in my photography this year and tomorrow I’m off up to Mountsorrel, Leicester to perform at Stonehurst Farm and Motor Museum’s 1940s

Inside Bletchley Park!

Event. Unfortunately Paul is unable to join me this year as he has come down with Streptococcus a nasty ear infection which is effecting his hearing and balance. He’s currently on a course of antibiotics and he’s going to be out of action for a couple of weeks until he is able to heal. It’s really disappointing for him as we had planned to make it a long weekend and we were all set to do a photo shoot on the Monday.

Paul sends his apologies to all of those of you who were looking forward to hearing him sing

Meeting Up with My Friend Rob Bailey!

this weekend and he’s looking forward to catching up with you all when he is better.

We are sending Paul all our good wishes, lots of love and do get well soon xxx.

In the mean-time the show must go on and I will be covering the whole weekend. Here is my itinerary and I hope very much you can all make it along to see me. The event is taking place at Stonehurst Farm and Motor Museum, Bond Lane, Mountsorrel, Leicestershire, LE12 7AA and

Enjoying the Grounds!

I shall be performing 3 x 45 minute non repetative costume shows daily plus the Saturday night dance which i shall be performing in two sets from 7pm – 7.45pm & 8.15pm – 9.15pm

Saturday 13th August 11.30am “The Feets in Port Again” – WRNS Show, 1.30pm “Stage & Screen” – Hollywood Glamour, 3.30pm “Stars & Stripes Show” American Songs, 7pm “In the Mood” Saturday Night Dance.

Sunday 14th August 11.30am “Straighten Up

Stonehurst Farm 1940s Event 2022

& Fly Right “- WAAF Show, 1.30pm “Underneath the Arches” Pearly Queen Show, 3.30pm “Don’t Sit Under the Apple Tree” 1940s Glamour. For more info click the link and it will be delightful to see you!

https://www.stonehurstfarm.co.uk/

I shall leave you with a few of Harry’s photos from Bletchley Park.

Keep Following Toodle Pip and Bye for Now! 😉

 


Opening the Concert Series at Bletchley Park, Block H & The Canal Festival!

Me with MC Mr Parker at The Canal Festival!

I’m afraid I’m going to have to be quick tonight as I’m busy working on show plans for Bletchley Park. This Saturday I’m opening the park’s Concert Series which runs through the month of August. Famous for allied code braking during WW2 Bletchley Park hosts a number of events and heritage days through out the year. I’m thrilled to be opening the season. Last year I performed my “We’ll Meet Again” show in ATS uniform and this year I am returning with my Wrens show “The Fleets in Port Again”. For more details please click the link below and it will be delightful to see you. https://bletchleypark.org.uk/event/fiona-harrison/

During the war more than 1600 Wrens worked at Bletchley Park so I thought this show would be a fitting tribute to the huge contribution they made to the British war effort. Entrance to my concert is included in the museum’s ticket price and I shall be performing 2 x 45 minute sets from 12.15pm. For my second set I will be returning in Hollywood

Waiting To Go On Stage at The Canal Festival!

glamour and I’ve made myself a new 1940s hat for the occasion. Judi has also made me a new dress from an original 1940s pattern which I’m looking forward to wearing very much. I hope it will cut a dash and look bright and colorful in the press photos.

This week I was featured in the Leighton Buzzard Observer news paper and you can read all about my forth coming Bletchley Park show by clicking the enclosed link.  https://www.leightonbuzzardonline.co.uk/news/people/forties-sweetheart-fiona-harrison-returns-to-bletchley-park-next-weekend-3787358

All Change For the TNMOC!

This week I’ve been extremely busy as I performed my Pearly Queen show as part of the Leighton Buzzard canal festival last Saturday. It was the first time I had performed for this particular event and we couldn’t have wished for better weather. The sun shone down all day and the festival attracted record breaking numbers. It took place at Tiddenfoot Lake and I had a very tight schedule. Straight afterwards I was booked to play at The National Museum of Computing for the staff BBQ. I had my time planned with military precision and everything worked in perfectly as I opened with “Underneath the Arches” in Leighton Buzzard and finished with a vintage mix  and “Thank-you for the Music” at Block H, Bletchley Park.

Both shows went extremely well and I shall leave you with a few of my favorite photos.

Mush dash, Keep Following Toodle Pip and Bye for Now! 😉

Thank-you for the Music!

 

 


Back from the Recording Studio & All Set for the Canal Festival!

Recording my Harmonies in the Studio!

It’s just a very quick blog tonight as I get ready for the weekend. Last Monday I was in the recording studio working with my musical arranger Richard Whennell on  harmonies as I picked up my new musical arrangements of the songs “Busy Doing Nothing” and “Apple Blossom Time” which I plan to show case at my Bletchley Park Concert on the 6th August. https://bletchleypark.org.uk/event/fiona-harrison/

When ever I commission a new arrangement I always make sure I record a rehearsal CD at the

Canal Festival Saturday 30th July 22!

same time which helps me to learn my songs correctly and quickly in time for performance. Richard never cease to amaze me with his skill and quality of musicianship. I quite surprise myself sometimes at just how many bespoke musical arrangements I have in my repertoire, but then again it’s a life’s work and I’m still commissioning. I like to be different at it’s important to stand out from the crowd. The trick is finding those forgotten gems that every-one knows but haven’t been sung for a while and bringing them back to life.

This Saturday I’m performing for  The Leighton Buzzard Canal Festival. It’s the first time I’ve done it and I’ve been invited to perform my Pearly Queen Show “Underneath the Arches” at 3.20pm.

Bletchley Park Concert Series Saturday 6th July 22!

The event is taking place at Tiddenfoot Waterside Park, Tiddenfoot Lake, Leighton Buzzard LU7 2AE and we are all keeping our fingers crossed for dry weather. https://www.leightonlinslade-tc.gov.uk/council_events/linslade-canal-festival/

I’m looking forward to it very much as I have a great show planned and then straight afterwards I’m performing at The National Museum of Computing which is also located at Bletchley Park for the staff BBQ. I have a quick turn around and a complete costume change as I go from Pearly Queen to Vintage Glamour.

That’s all my news for now but if you would like to know more about the events I’m appearing at just click on the enclosed links and I look forward to seeing you.

Toodle Pip and Bye for Now! 😉

 


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