Arts & Entertainment Award 2011
Clare Teal was born & brought up in Kildwick, between Keighley and Skipton and developed an interest in jazz from an early age. She went on to study music at Wolverhampton University but discovered that she loved singing in public and after graduation she started a career in advertising, singing in her spare time with various amateur and semi-professional bands.
Her break came when she was asked to stand in for Stacey Kent at a weekend festival in Llandrindod Wells. This led (after some determined self-promotion, in which she drew upon her advertising skills) to a three-album contract with the jazz-specialist label Candid Records. Her popularity soared, with appearances on radio and television bringing her to the attention of a wider public. This eventually led to her being signed by Sony in what was the biggest recording deal by any British jazz singer.
Since 2005 Clare has been the presenter of the BBC Radio 2 show, Big Band Special, on a Monday night and regularly appears as a presenter on Friday Night is Music Night and since August 2009, she has also been presenting Sunday Night at 10.