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Shakespeare in Jazz:

All The World's A Song

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Daniel Kelly - Composer & Pianist   “…stunningly original...visionary imagination...”   — Paul Pines, Artistic Director,  Lake George Jazz Festival

Daniel Kelly - Composer & Pianist

“…stunningly original...visionary imagination...”

— Paul Pines, Artistic Director, Lake George Jazz Festival

Frederick Johnson - Jazz Vocalist   “The world needs to hear Fred Johnson’s music.”   - Chick Corea

Frederick Johnson - Jazz Vocalist

“The world needs to hear Fred Johnson’s music.”

- Chick Corea

Text from Shakespeare’s Masterpieces are transformed into fresh and dynamic jazz songs that have audiences singing along in sheer delight.

Shakespeare in Jazz: All the World’s a Song is an engaging, participatory celebration of Shakespeare's work, offering an exciting new way to experience the his genius.  Great for those discovering his plays for the first time and for Shakespeare aficionados alike!

Throughout the concert, audience members will join Daniel's jazz group, featuring an amazing jazz vocalist, as they sing along to catchy, original songs based on Midsummer Night’s Dream, Twelfth Night, Macbeth, Hamlet and many more!

Shakespeare in Jazz features the tremendous talents of jazz vocalist Frederick Johnson. Johnson has performed on stage with such musical greats as Chick Corea & Christian McBride and has performed as an opening act for Miles Davis, Dizzy Gillespie, Aretha Franklin, George Benson, B.B. King and many others.

School performances & workshops also available.

Shakespeare in Jazz: All the World’s a Song - 3-minute promo video

All the World’s a Stage (from As You Like It)

Full Fathom Five (from The Tempest)

Shakespeare Blues

Come Away, Death (from Twelfth Night) w/ Sarah Elizabeth Charles

Double, Double Toil & Trouble (from Macbeth)

O Mistress Mine (from Twelfth Night)

Double, Double, Toil & Trouble (duo)

We Gotta Create a New Reality was improvised at the Stella Adler Studios in NYC. At the end of an evening of singing Shakespeare to an ecstatic audience of theater students, we improvised this song about the power of words and how the words you use can make a difference in the world. Whether we're performing for elementary students or adults, this is one of the overarching themes we aim to convey in All the World's a Song - Shakespeare in Jazz. As you can hear by this audience's enthusiastic response, the message was taken to heart!


This program is ideal for school performances.
Download the study guide here:

Teacher Resource Guide created by New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC) which includes curriculum standards.

Teacher Resource Guide created by New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC) which includes curriculum standards.

Window on the Work created by the McCallum Theatre’s Aesthetic Education Program

Window on the Work created by the McCallum Theatre’s Aesthetic Education Program

What people are saying about Shakespeare in Jazz:

The Daniel Kelly Quartet’s Shakespeare in Jazz is nothing short of transformative. What I have attempted to do with the heightened language of Shakespeare over the years for students, actors and audiences alike, Daniel Kelly and his team successfully accomplished with the genius of combining Shakespeare and jazz.

“Having been the co-Artistic Director of the Long Beach Shakespeare company, directed and performed in many professional Shakespearean productions around the country and being a teacher and advocate of Shakespeare’s written text from kindergarten through Master of Fine Arts in performance levels of education, and now being a Teaching Artist at the McCallum Theatre—I would encourage any organization or festival to fully embrace the immense talent that is the Daniel Kelly Quartet’s Shakespeare in Jazz.
— Denis McCourt, MFA (McCallum Theatre Teaching Artist), Palm Desert, CA
The experience, and I mean experience, of The Daniel Kelly Quartet performing Shakespeare in Jazz unlocked the language of Shakespeare for me through the soulful and playful rhythms of jazz. I was captivated! This show is a rare and unforgettable gift.
— April Rhodes, Teaching Artist / McCallum Theatre, Palm Desert, CA
What a thrill and pleasure it was to be a part of the magic that happened as a result of your Shakespeare in Jazz performance and our accompanying unit of study!

How does an artist take two seemingly disparate and more than likely intimidating art forms and turn them into a musical experience for people, young and old? I say experience instead of performance because the artists of Daniel Kelly Quartet created an environment for everyone in the audience to feel a part of the music DKQ was creating on stage. They found a way to lure students into embracing jazz music and Shakespeare lyrics and sing along with great enthusiasm and joy. They made both art forms accessible and incredibly enjoyable. My students can’t stop singing phrases like “Full fathom five. My father lies...”, “Doubt now the stars are fire....”. And you would think that DKQ’s “Double Double Toil and Trouble” was a top forty hit by the way the students sing it. Like an ear worm. A truly wonderful ear worm!

Thank you for the gift of song and community that you and your incredibly gifted musicians have brought to our students. I believe that the enthusiasm will live on and the trail of learning more about both art forms will be long and prosperous!
— Holly O’Farrell, Teaching Artist / McCallum Theatre, Palm Desert, CA
Daniel Kelly was an incredible professional and entertainer bringing Shakespeare to life in the Black Hills. I was truly moved by each performance he gave because he adjusted his style to connect to the diversity of each audience - from young students, the general public, and to adults with developmental disabilities, each performance was specially crafted for their needs. I would be honored to have Daniel and his band back at The Matthews.
— Becky Naccarato Eastburn, Executive Director, The Matthews Opera House & Arts Center, Spearfish, South Dakota
Daniel and Fredrick made magic by combining Shakespeare and jazz. Their excellent job explaining about Shakespeare’s works and how they can translate into music helped the audience understand what they were seeing and hearing thus they were fully engaged. The feedback from teachers was that students were mesmerized and would be talking about the show for weeks to come! Everyone agreed it was definitely a quality performance. Daniel and Frederick were both so personable and a joy to work with!
— Molly Campbell, Arts Education Coordinator, Alhambra Theatre, Hopkinsville, KY
I didn’t even know I liked Shakespeare!
— Audience member, Douglass Theatre, Macon, GA