Daughter of jazz musician and composer Sir John Dankworth and singing star Dame Cleo Laine, Jacqui Dankworth was brought up either on the road or by a succession of Spanish nannies. The positives of the entertainment world attracted more than the negatives repelled - just. The big surprise was the route she chose into the entertainment business. Dankworth’s first forays on to the stage were as an actor: she worked with the Royal Shakespeare Company, the National Theatre and John Dexter's Company playing a multitude of critically acclaimed roles. Soon the plays turned into musicals and before long she was playing leading parts in the West End. But the singing bug had bitten, and Dankworth left the London stage to focus on her recording career. First, she toured with brother Alec Dankworth's quintet, visiting Hawaii, Hong Kong and Indonesia. Occasionally, time allowed her to venture into the studio to record - her first work being a newly commissioned jazz reworking of AE Housman poetry, as a guest artist with the New Perspectives Ensemble. The album was voted Record of the Year in 'The Times'. In 2003 Dankworth released her first major crossover album, 'As The Sun Shines Down On Me', which brought her to the attention of Michael Parkinson and Radio 2. Since then, her career has gone from strength to strength.