Jacqui Dankworth

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Jacqui Dankworth
Birth name Jacqueline Dankworth
Born (1963-02-05) 5 February 1963 (age 53)
Northampton, Northamptonshire, England
Genres Jazz
Occupation(s) Singer, Actress
Labels Audacious Music
Website JacquiDankworth.com

Jacqui Dankworth (born 5 February 1963) is a British jazz singer.[1] She is the daughter of the jazz musician, arranger and composer Sir John Dankworth and the singer Dame Cleo Laine.

Life and career[edit]

Dankworth was born in Northampton, Northamptonshire, England. Before taking to the stage as a singer Jacqui Dankworth worked as an actress with the Royal Shakespeare Company, the Royal National Theatre and John Dexter's Company playing a multitude of critically acclaimed roles. The plays soon turned into musicals and before long Dankworth was playing in the West End, even originating the role of Cinderella in the London premiere of Stephen Sondheim's Into the Woods.[2] This in turn led her to her own recording career.

In 2003, Dankworth released her first album, As The Sun Shines Down On Me on Candid Records. This album brought her to the attention of Michael Parkinson and BBC Radio 2, and she appeared regularly on air throughout that year. More guest appearances followed, Dankworth featured on Courtney Pine’s album Devotion,[3] which was released on 6 October 2003. Tied in with the release, Dankworth performed alongside Pine at the Royal Festival Hall, as part of the London Jazz Festival.

This new found attention brought her a guest appearance in the film, Shoreditch,[4] starring Joely Richardson and Shane Ritchie. Dankworth appeared in the opening shot singing the Billie Holiday number, "My Man", and later sang "Body and Soul" as a featured track.

Dankworth followed the success of As The Sun Shines Down On Me with the 2004 release, Detour Ahead. Her third album, Back To You was released in 2009. She is currently working on an album that she started with her late father, and appeared in the Les Misérables film.

Personal life[edit]

Dankworth attended St. Christopher School in Hertfordshire and is an alumna and fellow of Guildhall School of Music & Drama.[5]

Dankworth is married to Charlie Wood, a blues keyboardist and vocalist from Memphis, Tennessee.[6]


  • As The Sun Shines Down On Me (Candid, 2002)
  • Detour Ahead (Candid, 2004)
  • Back To You (Audacious Music, 2009)
  • It Happens Quietly (Specific Jazz, 2011)
  • Live to Love (Specific Jazz, 2013)