Party at the Palace:
The Party at the Palace was a pop concert held in London in 2002. The event was in commemoration of the Golden Jubilee of Elizabeth II held over the Golden Jubilee Weekend 1-4 June 2002. The concert itself was held at Buckingham Palace Garden on 3 June 2002. It was the pop equivalent of the Prom at the Palace, a classical music event.
Event and venue
The concert was held at the gardens of Buckingham Palace Garden as part of the Golden Jubilee. The event was touted as the greatest concert in Britain since Live Aid or possibly ever. Tickets to the event were determined by a lottery. 12,000 people attended the concert. An estimated 1 million people watched outside the Palace in The Mall and around the Queen Victoria Memorial,d 200 million on television. The concert included performances of many hit songs from the reign of Queen Elizabeth II. The event was the culmination of a national day of partying. The BBC Music Live Festival also occurred on the day. At 1:00 towns across the United Kingdom had bands play All You Need Is Love before church bells were rung around the country.
Amongst others, performers included:
Paul McCartney, Bryan Adams, Keith Airley, Atomic Kitten, Dame Shirley Bassey, Tony Bennett, Blue, Emma Bunton, Eric Clapton, The Corrs, Joe Cocker, Phil Collins, Ray Cooper, Ray Davies, Dame Edna Everage, Tony Iommi, J’anna Jacoby, Elton John, Tom Jones, Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Annie Lennox, Ricky Martin, Ozzy Osbourne, Mark Andrew-Brydon, Brian May and Roger Taylor of Queen, Mis-teeq, Cliff Richard, S Club 7, Rod Stewart, Will Young, Ruby Wax, Brian Wilson, Steve Winwood, Tony Vincent, Hannah Jane Fox
Also performing was the London cast of the musical We Will Rock You. Several newspapers mentioned the absence of The Rolling Stones. The Stones said the event conflicted with their upcoming world tour.
It is thought of as one of the most impressive collections of musicians on a single stage. The concert was divided into two parts: pop music and classic rock music. In between acts there were some comedy segments by Lenny Henry, Ben Elton, Meera Syal, Nina Wadia, Ruby Wax and Dame Edna Everage.
The event ended with the Royal Family joining the stars onstage. Prince Charles thanked his mother for her fifty years on the throne, famously beginning his speech with the words, “Your Majesty…..MUMMY!” to the delight of the crowd and bemusement of the Queen.
Following this the Queen and Prince Philip went to light the National Beacon on the Mall. After the lighting of the beacon the largest fireworks show in the history of London took place. During this time different symbols were projected onto the palace including a Union Flag.
A DVD has been issued of the performance. Some portions have been cut, e.g. Ruby Wax’s monologue and Paul McCartney’s spontaneous performance of Her Majesty.
A live CD recording of the performance was also released in 2002.