Jazz singer Jacqui Dankworth ‘really proud’ to follow parents with royal honour

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The daughter of Johnny Dankworth and Cleo Laine said the Duke of Cambridge told her he is trying to get pop music played at investitures.

Jacqui Dankworth receives her MBE from the Duke of Cambridge

British jazz singer Jacqui Dankworth has spoken of her pride at receiving an MBE after last being at Buckingham Palace with her father when he received a knighthood.

Dr Dankworth was recognised for her services to music at an investiture ceremony on Tuesday.

After being presented with her honour by the Duke of Cambridge, she told the PA news agency that the last time she was at the palace was when her father, jazz musician and composer Sir John “Johnny” Dankworth, received a knighthood for his services to music in 2006.

Her mother – Dame Cleo Laine – is an English jazz and pop singer and has also been recognised by the Queen for her services to music.

“I’m really proud to be here,” Dr Dankworth said on Tuesday.

Investitures at Buckingham Palace
Jazz singer Jacqui Dankworth with her MBE (Yui Mok/PA)

Asked if the Queen’s honours run in the family, she said: “It must.”

Dr Dankworth paid her compliments to the string orchestra which played during the ceremony, describing it as “lovely music”.


“I told the duke I really love this music and he said he’s been trying to get them to play pop music,” she said.

Dr Dankworth, who was born in Northampton, has worked as an actress with the Royal Shakespeare Company, the Royal National Theatre and in West End Theatre.

She released her first album, As The Sun Shines Down On Me, in 2003.

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