Chris Gidney – Founder & Director
Chris comes from a show business family and at age nine formed a comedy magic double-act with his father. Since then he has spent a lifetime in the profession as entertainer, producer, director and author, working with numerous artistes from the legendary Frank Sinatra to Sir Cliff Richard. Joining London’s West-End in 1980 he enjoyed twelve consecutive productions before moving to BBC Television, working on such classic programmes as `Blue Peter` and `That’s Life` with Esther Rantzen. Chris has authored 28 commercially published books covering various aspects of life and faith in show business including best-selling books with classic entertainers Sir Harry Secombe, Cannon & Ball, Paul Daniels & Bob Monkhouse and many others . Apart from several Pantomimes, Chris has also written for the BBC and a number of newspapers and periodicals.
As a freelance Director and Producer, Chris is responsible for a number of unique stage, television, radio and cruise ship productions, alongside music, audio and video releases. He created That’s Entertainment Productions`, which specialises in bringing high quality family entertainment to the commercial theatre. TEP regularly produces touring shows and seasons for popular resorts such as Blackpool, Eastbourne, Clacton and Bournemouth and often has several productions on the road at any one time including its latest Comedy Legends series with well-known faces from such classic TV series such as Dads Army and Allo Allo. His `Liberace – Live in Las Vegas! ` show recently enjoyed a spot at the London Palladium, and Chris produces several consecutive Pantomimes each year across the UK. Chris enjoys creating and producing specialist themed cruises which have taken him around the world, including the Christian Cruises which feature Christian professionals from the entertainment business. Chris enjoys taking some of these special events to churches across the UK.
Chris formed the show business charity `Christians in Entertainment` in 1982 when working on the original West-End production of EVITA. CIE provides backstage support for professionals at every level of the entertainment industry, and is recognised as a well-respected organisation within the industry. Chris has a grown up family and enjoys living in Sussex.
Rev. Rosemary Jenkins – Prayer Chaplain:
I first heard of CIE in 2012 whilst assisting on a Christian Cruise to the Holy land, and it was on that cruise that I met Chris. The following year Chris asked me to undertake the role of Prayer Chaplain, to which I willingly agreed. I have been ordained since 2004, first as a non-stipendiary minister, combining it with a full-time nursing career. After retiring from Health Visiting, I then became the full-time vicar of 9 churches in Lincolnshire for 9 years before retiring – again! I now serve, when needed, in my local village group of churches which is still in Lincolnshire. My birth county is Lancashire where my Father was a Vicar. My Mother, once a Nurse, also had a strong Christian faith. My schooling was in Nottinghamshire and Cambridgeshire and I trained in London as a Nurse. After many years of marriage and five children, the marriage sadly ended. Having accepted Jesus as a child, I have experienced the presence, comfort and strength of God throughout my life, in good times and bad. As a Nurse and as a Minister and as a Mother I have been alongside others in their times of grief, sickness, anxiety as well as sharing their joys. My hope is to bring that understanding to my prayers for you whatever your circumstances.
Rev Cindy Kent MBE
Cindy is well known as lead singer with The Settlers, the UK’s leading 60`s pop-folk group and travelled the world with songs such as The Lightning Tree and was respected for its hit covers of Beatles songs. A six-month residency on the BBCTV series, Singalong, led to tours with Dusty Springfield, Roy Orbison and The Small Faces. Cindy left the band in 1973 to join Radio 4, Radio 2, and Radio 1, later becoming a broadcaster on London’s first legal commercial radio stations, LBC and Capital Radio and in 1995 was the first presenter recruited to the team for Premier Christian Radio. In 2008 Cindy was ordained as a priest, and was also the Anglican Priest on the multi-faith Chaplaincy team at the North London Hospice; Local Chaplain to the Fire Brigade and the local Residential Care Home and Trustee of The Christian Evidence Society. She is also a Trustee of the Church of England Newspaper. Cindy was a co-founder of the Arts Centre Group – for Christians who are professionally engaged in the arts. Her hobbies are ecumenism, reading, crosswords, Sudoku, tapestry and needlework and sleeping! She now lives in Minster on Sea, Sheppey and still works occasionally as a freelance broadcaster and as a Priest conducting weddings and funerals and leading worship. She was awarded the MBE for services to religious broadcasting in the Queen’s 90th Birthday Honours List. Cindy has a first-hand understanding of the needs, difficulties and joys of working in the entertainment profession and heads up our Social Media network to encourage and support performers whether on tour, in residencies, on cruise ships or `resting`.