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Jacqui Dankworth’s Shakespeare Project

2016 saw the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death. Jacqui thought it would be most appropriate, therefore, to visit the musical settings of Shakespeare’s poetry inspired by and taken from the seminal album “Shakespeare And All That Jazz” that was composed by her late father Sir John Dankworth. Settings such as “Shall I Compare Thee To A Summer’s Day”, “O Mistress Mine” , ” Fear No More The Heat O’ The Sun” the story of “Macbeth” and a comical setting of Shakespeare’s complete works!

The brilliance of the music, the genius of Shakespeare’s poetry and world class musicians combined with Jacqui’s emotional and virtuosic voice makes for a very special concert.

This material has not been performed in completion by another songstress since Dame Cleo Laine recorded the album “Wordsongs” in the 1980’s. Jacqui did however perform some of the settings at The Bear Garden Museum 30 years ago having been invited by Sam Wanamaker himself to help raise money for the Globe Theatre on the river Thames, London. The time is “right” for Jacqui  to revisit the material she grew up with and to sing these poems that are embedded in her DNA!

She is a highly regarded performer and successful touring artist and with this very important anniversary she feels it would be complete madness not to bring to life these wonderful settings –  in a different reincarnation.

Both the settings and her father’s music are very much loved and are amongst Jacqui’s favourite recordings made during her parents long recording careers.

Jacqui is also a seasoned actress having studied at the Guildhall School Of Music And Drama, where she was made a fellow. She has worked with the RSC, National Theatre, toured the
UK and India with John Dexter’s theatre company, played Cinderella in Stephen Sondheim’s debut West End production of Into The Woods and appeared in many other West End productions including Les Liaisons Dangereuses, and Sophisticated Ladies (a review of the music of Duke Ellington).

 The performance include settings by Shakespeare, largely composed by John Dankworth and also,  by Duke Ellington, Billy Strayhorn, Charlie Wood, A Young.