Val Rosing

Valerian Rosing (1910–1969), also known after 1938 as Gilbert Russell, was a British dance band singer[1] best known as the vocalist with the BBC in the BBC Dance Orchestra directed by Henry Hall.

Rosing was the son of Russian tenor Vladimir Rosing and English singer Marie Falle. Rosing sang on the original BBC recording of "Teddy Bears' Picnic"[2] as well as "In a Little Gypsy Tea Room". He also sang on the Ray Noble Orchestra's version of "Try a Little Tenderness", the first recording of this well-covered song. Rosing recorded more than one hundred sides with various English bands, including Spike Hughes and His Decca-Dents, the Jack Payne Orchestra, Jack Hylton's Orchestra and Rosing's own Radio Rhythm Rascals.

In 1938, Rosing moved to America at the urging of Louis B. Mayer, who renamed him Gilbert Russell, with hopes of making Rosing the "English Bing Crosby". His years at MGM were uneventful and, after his stint with the studio, Rosing sang and acted in musicals and light operas around the country. Making the transition from pop to "legitimate" singer, Rosing legally changed his name to Gilbert Russell and sang in Chicago Theater of the Air, the NY Opera Company, and the San Francisco Opera.

In the 1960s, Rosing worked as one of Hollywood's top vocal coaches, with students that included Natalie Wood, George Chakiris, June Lockhart and Tina Louise.

Rosing was married three times. The first, in 1932, was to English actress Meriel Carrington. They had a daughter, the artist Anna Edouard. His second marriage was in 1953 to Marilyn Pendry, a dancer in movies such as White Christmas and An American in Paris. They had one daughter, Claudia Russell,[3] before divorcing. Rosing's third marriage was in 1961 to June Baum, a singer and actress.

Rosing died of cancer in 1969 at the age of 59 and is buried at Eden Cemetery in Los Angeles.


  1. ^ Ruth Glean Rosing (1 January 1993). Val Rosing: Musical Genius: An Intimate Biography. Sunflower University Press. pp. all. ISBN 978-0-89745-167-3.
  2. ^ "The Other Face Of Singer Val Rosing". NPR Music. 19 February 2010. Retrieved 16 April 2018.
  3. ^ Trevor Hunnicutt (August 1, 2008). "Claudia Russell: folk's 'reluctant diva'". SF Gate. Retrieved 17 March 2019.

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