Diamond Jubilee Concert
Over half a million people joined the British Royal Family and music royalty for an absolutely unforgettable performance.
The Queen arrived about halfway through the performance; as she made her way to her seat, accompanied by the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall, the crowds broke into a standing ovation and laud cheers. Her Majesty was wearing a cocktail dress of gold lame designed by Angela Kelly under a dark cape, waved to the crowd. The crowds were all the more supportive since it had emerged just hours before the concert that the Duke of Edinburgh would miss all further Jubilee events; Prince Philip was hospitalised with an infection. Nevertheless, Her Majesty went on with her duty, as always, and put her worries behind to enjoy the magnificent performance.
Sir Cliff Richard was the first act to unite the audience in a sing-along, with thousands of Union Jacks being swung in time to Congratulations. Afterwards, Sir Cliff said the experience was fantastic: “When I looked down The Mall, the crowd seemed to go all the way up to the Admiralty Arch. I don’t know how many people that represents but it’s got to be hundreds of thousands. It’s very humbling.” Sir Tom Jones vowed the crowed once again with his magnificent performance as he sang his hit song Delilah, with even the royals singing along. Sir Elton John, still recovering from a respiratory infection, gave a beautiful soulful reading of Your Song. Other memorable moments included Annie Lennox wearing a set of wings and singing There Must Be An Angel, Grace Jones hula-hooping her way through Slave To The Rhythm, and Shirley Bassey with a very fitting song for the night – Diamonds are forever. Alfie Boe and Renee Fleming gave flawless performances, including singing West Side Story’s Somewhere from the balcony of Buckingham Palace. The highlight of the musical performances was undoubtedly the Jubilee Song, written by Sir Andrew-Lloyd Webber and Gary Barlow. The simple but emotional saw musicians from across the Commonwealth take to the stage. Sir Paul McCartney wrapped up proceedings with a jaunty crowd participation version of Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da.
Despite the star-packed concert, the highlight of the event was undoubtedly Prince Charles’ speech at the end. As the Diamond Jubilee show ended, the Queen, accompanied by the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall, Prince Charles made their way down to the stage to a standing ovation. The Prince then gave a warm and emotional to his mother that brought tears to many eyes, including Her Majesty’s. His very opening remarks – “Your Majesty, Mummy” earned him rapturous cheers from the crowd as the Queen looked on delighted and slightly amused. Prince Charles then thanked all those who made the concert possible, from Gary Barlow – the organiser – to the technicians working behind the scene. He also made a joke about the weather: “And if I may say so Your Majesty thank God the weather turned out fine. And the reason of course is because I didn’t do the weather forecast.”
The most moving part of Prince Charles’ speech was perhaps about his father, the Duke of Edinburgh. The clearly emotional Prince said: “The only sad thing about this evening is that my father could not be here with us because, unfortunately, he was taken unwell. But ladies and gentlemen if we shout loud enough he might just hear us in hospital and get better.” And the crowds didn’t disappoint; barely had Prince Charles said the last word as loud cheers erupted – so loud in fact that Prince Philip might have well actually heard them. The crowds then enthusiastically chanted “Philip! Philip!” for some time. Her Majesty was visibly touched by the very affectionate show of support and love, and struggled to contain her tears.
Of course, Prince Charles’ tribute was mainly about the central figure of the night, and indeed the year – Queen Elizabeth herself. He started with a little joke: “Your Majesty a Diamond Jubilee is a unique and special event. Some of us have had the joy of celebrating three Jubilees with you. And I have the medals to prove it.” After appreciated laughs from the Queen and the people, the Prince then continued: “And we are now celebrating the life and service of a very special person over the last 60 years. ‘I was three when my grandfather George VI died and suddenly, unexpectedly, you and my father’s lives were irrevocably changed when you were only 26. So as a nation this is our opportunity to thank you and my father for always being there for us. For inspiring us with your selfless duty and service and for making us proud to be British. Proud at a time when I know how many of your fellow countrymen are suffering such hardships and difficulties. Proud to be lining the banks of the Thames in their millions, despite the rain and the cold. Proud to be part of something as unique as the Commonwealth, which through your leadership has given us that essential sense of unity through diversity. So Your Majesty we offer you our humble duty and with it three resounding cheers.” Everyone then joined in with three deafening Hoorays! and applause.
As the Prince’s speech came to an end, fireworks came with the Queen lit the final beacon on The Mall, and then everyone enjoyed a magnificent fireworks display and projections on the Buckingham Palace. Overall, it was an unforgettable performance, and a fitting tribute for the Queen who has been an epitome of duty for the past 60 years.
Tomorrow, Her Majesty, The Prince of Wales, The Duchess of Cornwall, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Prince Harry, and other members of the Royal Family will attend Service of Thanksgiving at St Paul’s Cathedral.British Royals
Tagged Celebrities, Concert, Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom, Elizabeth II's Diamond Jubilee, Fashion, Music, The Prince of Wales.