Award-winning saxophone star born in Barking set to dazzle audience with a thrilling night of jazz

PUBLISHED: 13:03 04 September 2012 | UPDATED: 09:29 05 September 2012

Rising star: YolanDa has won best jazz act at the Mobo Awards twice and played for the presidents of Russia and Jamaica

Rising star: YolanDa has won best jazz act at the Mobo Awards twice and played for the presidents of Russia and Jamaica


Award-winning saxophone player YolanDa Brown will take the stage by storm for a thrilling night of jazz in east London.

The double Mobo winner born in Barking will play tunes from her best-selling debut album, April Showers May Flowers, at Queen’s Theatre in Hornchurch on September 17.

YolanDa, 29, will perform highlights from her growing collection of soul and R&B influenced melodies inspired by love and life with her band.

The rising star won the best jazz act at the Mobo Awards in 2008 and 2009, has toured with music luminaries including The Temptations and Courtney Pine and played for the presidents of Russia and Jamaica.

YolanDa, of Tottenham, north London, said: “We’ve being touring a lot this year. Coming somewhere close to home is really exiting. I’m looking forward to it.

“The Queen’s Theatre has always been my local. It will be exiting to take to the stage rather than being in the audience this time.

“I will play songs from my new album released in February April Showers May Flowers, which went to number one in the iTunes charts.”

YolanDa sees music as both a therapeutic and enabling force and has become a celebrity ambassador for Prince Charles’ educational charity, The Prince’s Trust.

She was presented an honorary doctorate of arts by the University of East London in 2010 and is a patron of the Mayor of London’s fund for young musicians.

YolanDa has played at the Prince’s Trust Rock Gala alongside Joss Stone and Boy George in the Royal Albert Hall, and performed with Jools Holland’s Rhythm & Blues Orchestra.

A theatre spokesman said: “The Queen’s is excited to welcome this Barking-born beauty and UK’s hottest rising jazz star.

“As a little girl, YolanDa was something of a musical prodigy, playing the piano, violin, drums, oboe and recorder before finally settling for the saxophone at 13, which she actually taught herself to play.

“Remarkably, she juggled her passion for music with a high-flying academic career, gaining three degrees and even pursuing a PhD.”

YolanDa Brown will perform at the Queen’s Theatre from 7.30pm. Tickets cost £17.50. To book, call the box office on 01708 443 333 or log on to

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