Farnworth councillor is Doris Day by night

The Bolton News: Cllr Jean Gillies as Doris Day Cllr Jean Gillies as Doris Day

BY day Jean Gillies is a ward councillor - but by night she’s Doris Day.

The Farnworth councillor swaps her smart, contemporary workwear for 1950s vintage, dons a wig and struts her stuff as her idol.

For Cllr Gillies, aged 51, her success as a Doris Day tribute act is a life-long ambition as she has always admired the American singer and actress who holds a special place in the hearts of her many fans.

Recently, our Looking Back pages featured Doris Day fan Norman Bamford, from Bolton, who has also enjoyed a life-long adoration of the star.

Mr Bamford met Doris many years ago in London. He is arguably one of Ms Day’s biggest fans.

But he is not the only local Doris fan as Cllr Gillies, who is a dance and vocal tutor, loves nothing more than getting into her stage costumes and spreading the word about her much-loved singing idol.

On Saturday, March 1, she will be bringing her famous Night And Day Show to Bolton’s Albert Halls where, under the name Jean Pasquill, she will star with Tony Fletcher, who sings the music of famous stars Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin.

Cllr Gillies, who is married to Matthew, aged 39, and has five children, said: “I have always loved Doris Day, and performing her songs on stage is a dream come true.”

Just like Mr Bamford, Cllr Gillies is going to get the opportunity to meet her idol after being invited to attend the star’s 90th birthday celebration, in America, in April, when Doris’ friends and fans will gather to pay tribute to the singing sensation.

Cllr Gillies said: “It is an opportunity to meet my idol, my biggest singing idol and I just can’t wait.”

She has invited Mr Bamford to attend her show as a guest.

Cllr Gillies added: “He is a such a big fan of Doris Day I thought he would enjoy it.”

For tickets for the Night And Day Show at the Albert Halls on March 1, call 01204 334400.

About Doris Day

  • Doris Day began her career as a big band singer in 1939. Her popularity rose after her first hit recording, Sentimental Journey, in 1945.
  • She appeared in 39 films. She was ranked the biggest box-office star, the only woman on the list, in 1960, 1962, 1963 and 1964, ranking in the top 10 1951–1952 and 1959–1966.
  • She became the top-ranking female box-office star of all time and is currently ranked sixth among the top 10 box office performers (male and female).
  • Day received an Oscar nomination for Pillow Talk, won three Henrietta Awards (World Film Favourite), received the Los Angeles Film Critics Association’s Career Achievement Award and, in 1989, received the Cecil B DeMille Award for lifetime achievement in motion pictures.
  • Her films include Pillow Talk, That Touch Of Mink, The Thrill Of It, Move Over Darling and Midnight Lace.
  • Day made her last film in 1968.
  • She released 31 albums, and her songs have spent a total of 460 weeks in the top 40 charts.
  • She has been awarded a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award and a Legend Award from the Society of Singers.
  • In 2011, she released her 29th studio album, My Heart, which debuted at number nine on the UK Top 40 charts.
  • Day is the oldest living artist to score a UK Top 10 with an album featuring new material.
  • She has been married four times — to Al Jorden, George Weidler, Martin Melcher and Barry Comden.
  • Now a widow, Day lives in Carmel-by-the-Sea, California, with her many pets. She also adopts stray animals.

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