Ronnie’s still swinging along

Swing Session 11 at The Congress Theatre in Eastbourne
Swing Session 11 at The Congress Theatre in Eastbourne

The ever-popular afternoon concert Swing Session returns to the Congress Theatre, Eastbourne, on Sunday, June 30 for its 11th year - featuring the Paul Davis Big Band with vocalists Jackie Toye, Grant Martins, Leanne Kyte and compere Sheila Tracey.

The show also features a musician who recently appeared alongside Dame Maggie Smith, Tom Courtney and Billy Connolly! The film Quartet , recently released on DVD following its cinematic screenings earlier this year, features Ronnie Hughes who was specifically asked to appear in the film by director Dustin Hoffman, after he saw Ronnie appearing at the Ealing Jazz Festival.

Ronnie spent several days filming on location with the cast, which also included Pauline Collins OBE, at Hedsor House Buckinghamshire.

But it was not without its dramas, on his way to film his final scene for the movie Ronnie fell and suffered a dreadful facial injury, one which doctors thought might mean he wouldn’t be able to play trumpet again. Thankfully after intensive therapy Ronnie was back to full health and returned to his beloved musical instrument.

Born in 1925 Ronnie celebrates his 89th birthday this month but is showing no signs of slowing.

A highlight of the Big Band calendar Swing Sessions returns with the tunes of Glenn Miller, Tommy Dorsey, Benny Goodman, Duke Ellington and Count Basie.

Swing Session 11 starts at 3pm on June 30 - tickets £13.50 and £14.50, with concessions, available from Friends of the Devonshire Park. To book call the box office on 01323 412000 or online at