Variety Ball 2016

Posted by Anne-Marie on June 20, 2016

Get Ahead Variety Ball 2016_Save the date_long

This year’s Variety Ball is taking place on Saturday 26th November 2016 at the Hilton Birmingham Metropole.


Russell Kane

Russell Kane

Russell Kane

Multi-award winning comedian, presenter, actor, author and scriptwriter Russell Kane is best known as the host of three series of BBC3’s Live At The Electric, regular appearances on BBC1’s Live At Apollo, BBC3’sUnzipped, ITV2’s Celebrity Juice and I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out of Here… Now!

Russell was nominated four times for prestigious Edinburgh Comedy Awards before winning Best Show in 2010. He then went onto make history as the first comedian to win both the Edinburgh Award and Melbourne Comedy Festival’s Barry Award in one year. His award-winning show Smokescreens & Castles was recorded in front of his home crowd in Westcliff-on-Sea’s at the Palace Theatre and released by Universal Pictures in 2011. Famed for his critically acclaimed tours Russell has been performing sell-out shows across the globe.

There is no end to his talents having published his first novel The Humorist which was nominated for a literary prize, he has also written, directed and starred in three plays two of which have toured, and one, blank verse, which was performed in the main house of the RSC in Stratford-Upon-Avon.


BEN_HANLIN13165Ben Hanlin

Ben is the star of ITV2’s Tricked, a six-part series that has now aired three seasons. Ben hosts the mischievous show, tricking unsuspecting members of the public and celebrities with his own special brand of hidden camera magic! Tricked won Best Entertainment Programme at the Broadcast Digital Awards 2014.

Ben currently has residency at the Museum of Comedy in London’s Leicester Square, with his live show ‘Work in Progress’ which has come to rave reviews. He will also be taking this fabulous mesh of magic and comedy to the world-renowned Edinburgh Fringe Festival this summer.

Most recently, Ben took to the stage on ITV1’s Tonight at The London Palladium where he showcased his latest mind-blowing magic skills. Ben is no stranger to West End stages after his two-week stint in hit show The Illusionists at London’s Shaftesbury Theatre at the end of last year. Ben also proved a massive success after another theatre gig in the New Zealand tour of Band of Magicians.

Ben hails from Birmingham and over the last ten years Ben has been performing his sleight of hand and stage magic at events all over the UK. Ben has performed at all sorts of functions for audiences from 2 – 2000 from close up intimate shows to large scale illusions. His warm, cheeky style makes him an instant hit wherever he performs!



James TW is no ordinary teenager. The British 18-year-old is a soulful singer-songwriter with a big voice and even bigger aspirations.

“I want people to hear my music and think ‘how did that guy describe the way I feel’,” James says, and he succeeds. Recently signed to iconic label Island Records as one of the youngest artists on their roster, James has managed to develop a wholly unique sound and lyrics that capture real, relatable emotion.

James grew up in Warwickshire.  His father, who plays guitar in a wedding band as a hobby, came home one day to find James banging on the drum kit. Shortly thereafter, the band’s drummer wasn’t able to make it to a show, “It was either let the ten-year-old play or cancel the gig, ” James remembers.  “So they let me play and I just fell in love with performing.”

Since that day, James’ passion for music has grown exponentially. Naturally gifted, he picked up guitar when he was 12 years-old and began playing piano the following year. As James honed his skills as a multi-instrumentalist, he began to post cover songs on YouTube. His videos showcase an undeniable talent with immense tecchnical aptitude and a voracious will to learn. “I would like to be received as a serious musician,” he says. “That’s really important to me.”

James discipline has clearly paid off, resulting in a distinct blues and jazz-infused singer-songwriter sound that recalls John Mayer and Jamie Cullum, two of James’ influences. He is equally capable of delivering ballads reminiscent of Ed Sheeran’s work, another artist who has had an impact on his music. James’ songs demonstrate critical elements of experienced songwriting and resonate with ease.

Shannon&Peter3Shannon & Peter

Shannon and Peter both danced as Principal dancers in major ballet Companies which included San Francisco Ballet, Northern Theatre Ballet and Ballet du Rhin.  After retiring in 2004 they continued in the dance world, teaching ballet as well as choreographing around the world as freelance teachers.

In 2014 Shannon and Peter came out of retirement to enter the Dance Competition ‘Got to Dance’ on Sky TV, where they came second in the Finals.  A huge honour since ballet had never been on the Live Shows before.

They’re latest achievement to date was entering Britain’s Got Talent, where they were the judges Wildcard taking them through to the Finals. Shannon and Peter have been the only classical ballet duet to get to the Finals of BGT.

To date they continue to teach and choreograph as well as run their own Associate programme- Midlands Associates and co-direct for their Summer School OPES.  They’re proudest and most important accomplishments are their two children Jamie and Tristan.

Shannon & Peter had this to say about appearing at our Variety Ball: “We are so honoured to be a part of the event in aid of such a noble and charitable cause. This is something that is close to our hearts. We dance for those who have lost their battle to this disease and to those who fight.”


One Day MoreWest End 2 U

Using cast members that have previously starred in the selected shows “West End 2 U” brings the magic of the theatre direct to you and your event. Having recently played the same bill as Michael McIntyre and Boyzone at the Savoy Hotel in London and enthralled audiences at the request of Cunard for the 175 year QE2 dock celebrations in Southampton, “West End 2 U” are bringing the cast of Les Misérables directly to you!”


Detroit Band Cancer ResearchDetroit Soul

Comprising of some of the most sought after session musicians in the UK today, Detroit Soul are an explosive 9-piece soul band with a passion for the music they perform.

Specialising in floor filling soul anthems from legends such as Michael Jackson, Earth Wind and Fire, Martha Reeves, Stevie Wonder, Candi Staton, Luther Vandross and loads more.

Fronted by two incredible singers…Trevor Francis and Vicki Nash along with a tight 3-piece horn section the band perform all over the world at some of the most prestigious venues.

Having worked with artists such as Jessie J, Sam Smith, Madonna, Beverley Knight, Will Young and Chaka Khan these musicians are at the top of their game and know how to put on a show.


We look forward to welcoming you for what we hope will be an extremely fun night, where we will also have the opportunity to raise funds to continue our mission in helping patients with head and neck diseases, including cancer.

If you would like to come along and support Get A-Head, a table for 10 is £800 (individual/additional tickets are £80 each).   Tickets are available from the office on 0121 371 5046 or by emailing   Please secure your table as soon as possible, with a line-up like this tickets won’t be around for long.  This really is a night not to be missed!

We look forward to seeing you in November.

To get a flavour of the Get A-Head Ball take a look at the highlights from our Grand Ball 2015, click here