Jan Graveson

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Jan Graveson
Jan Graveson headshot.jpg
BornJanice Margaret Graveson[1]
Easington, County Durham[1]
OccupationActress, singer
Years active1972–present

Janice Margaret "Jan" Graveson (born 1965 in Easington, County Durham) is an English actress and singer.



Born in Easington, County Durham. Childhood: Horden & Peterlee, County Durham Durham New College: studied Drama & Theatre Arts / Art A level, Music A level.

Born into a mining family, Graveson began performing on the club circuit at the age of six, but made her television debut in White Peak Farm in 1988. She went on to play the pregnant runaway Disa O'Brien in the BBC soap opera EastEnders from 1990 to 1991. She has also appeared in episodes of Spender (1991), Heartbeat (2001; 2007), Casualty (1989;1992;2012), Wycliffe (1998) and A Touch of Frost (1996). Graveson appeared in the BBC children's television show Byker Grove from 2004 to 2006 as Heather, the mother of Hayley Robinson (Heather Garrett). Graveson was seen in an episode of the BBC hospital drama Holby City in 2006, and in 2007 she appeared in the ITV sitcom Benidorm. She guest starred in the ITV police drama, The Bill, in 2008.


In 2004 she starred alongside Ray Winstone in Richard Hawkins' BAFTA nominated psychological thriller, Everything. Graveson played Naomi, a Soho prostitute, who was hired by Winstone's character, Richard. Instead of having sex with Naomi, Richard pays her just to talk. The film is largely a succession of dialogues between the two, intermittently broken up by events such as Richard hiding in the wardrobe to watch Naomi at work, or a backstory involving his wife and daughter, which gradually becomes more and more important. The film had a budget of just £47,500 and was filmed consecutively in Soho, London in only nine days. Graveson received much high acclaim for her performance in the film.[2]

Stage and music[edit]

On stage she has played Catherine Cookson in Tom and Catherine at the Customs House theatre in South Shields. She has also appeared in Hard Times at the Piccadilly Theatre in London's West End, and in Raving Beauties with John McArdle at the Liverpool Playhouse (1991–1992). She played Stella in Stairway to Heaven No.1 National Tour, and Helen in And a Nightingale Sang at the Octagon Theatre.

Graveson sang in bands as a teenager and later had a brief spell as a pop singer in the early '90s. In 1991 she released a cover version of the 1964 Cilla Black song "Anyone Who Had a Heart". Signed to Warner Brothers London. Graveson has also appeared in many stage plays as well as in the musical Blood Brothers playing Linda. She starred in both the West End and New York City Broadway production of the show.

In 1993 – 94 Graveson earned a Tony Award nomination in the "Best Performance by a Featured Actress in a Musical" category, for her role as Linda in Blood Brothers N.Y.C. Graveson has continued to perform musically. She played at the British Acoustic Festival with her band Disco Indians in July 2007 and performs internationally with her compositions which she performs vocally.

Jan started her stage career at the Live Theatre, Newcastle in 1983 alongside Robson Green. Jan also runs her own school for acting, singing and dance for adults.


  1. ^ a b "Birth Registration Details" Ancestry.co.uk (Retrieved: 25 July 2009)
  2. ^ " as well as being awarded winner of Sydney Film Festival 2006.everything (2005)", BBC. Retrieved 16 December 2007.

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