Jazz singer and sax player Kim Cypher will be the special guest at this year’s Kentwood Christmas Cracker in Swindon.

Kim’s final concert of the tour promoting her first album, Make Believe, was at The Stables in Wavendon owned by the jazz superstar Cleo Laine, who is the patron of the Kentwood Show Choir.

Cleo is a close friend of artistic director and founder of the choir Sheila Harrod, so Kim invited Sheila to attend the concert and they both met Cleo beforehand.

“It was fantastic, another highlight for me,’’ said Sheila, who counts 91-year-old Cleo as her mentor. “I was amazed at myself to be so close, so personal with such a star. I made her laugh and when Kim came in and played the sax we both started singing along. It was lovely.”

Kim too thought that meeting such a jazz star was a really special moment.

“I will treasure memories of the evening and the opportunity to briefly meet Dame Cleo Laine. Such an inspiring lady and such a meeting of warmth and sharing memories of music and life in the industry.’’

The Swindon choir recorded the track, Rising From Dust, for Kim’s new album and were also included on the music video for the song. Kim said: “It was spectacular, Kentwood were on the video and it was set in Cheltenham College Chapel and featured B. D. Lenz from New York.

Kim is recording the album in Swindon with musician and sound engineer Juanjo Lopez Vida. She turned professional a couple of years ago when she and her husband, Mike, decided to follow their dreamsinto the music industry. Since then they have notched up some prestigious gigs included a private concert for the prime minister Theresa May.

Sheila met Kim when she attended a jazz night at the Royal Oak in Swindon. Music has always been the Swindon singer/pianist’s passion and when her husband Chris died last year, the choir and her music have kept her going.

During Kim’s concert Sheila whispered to her friend that she wished she would sing the song played at Chris’ funeral, which was It Don’t Mean A Thing If It Ain’t Got Swing.

As she said the words Kim began to sing that song. Sheila says that afterwards the two musicians chatted and discovered that they both believed in fate and she believes that Chris is still guiding her.

Sheila said: “Where ever I go I see a white feather and I am sure it is from Chris. He was a keen Liverpool supporter but the garden of remembrance at the football club was full, which would have made him laugh, so I took his ashes on The Queen Mary for a cruise and the captain performed a ceremony for us. Afterwards Yvonne Walker, who came with me, and I had Liverpool cocktails.’’

The Kentwood Christmas Cracker goes with a bang on Sunday, November 25 in the Wyvern Theatre, Swindon, when the choir will be singing with the Aldbourne Band.from 6pm. The video of Rising From Dust featuring the choir will also be shown as part of the Christmas show. Kim said: “It is a tough industry, but it is the meeting and connection with like-minded people that keeps us all going.

“I am very grateful for the day I met Sheila and for our continued musical journey together. It is an exciting time and we are so looking forward to the Christmas Cracker.’’

For more details of Kentwood Show Choir visit http://www.kentwoodshowchoir.org/