Monte Carlo Rose Ball – 25th March 2006

Shirley rarely misses this annual charity fundraising event.

She has a residence in Monte Carlo and loves living there, often joining in the glittering social life of the principality.

Shirley wore the same beautiful red and gold gown to the Ball that she wore on TV last week. It’s unusual to see her wearing the same gown twice, but it is gorgeous.

This is one of the major black-tie charity events in Monaco. Created in 1954 by Princess Grace, it benefits the Princess Grace Foundation. Money raised goes to help needy youngsters through a range of projects. Each year H.H.R. The Princess of Hanover selects a new theme. This year it was Reggae. Many of the Grimaldi family always attend.

There are ravishing bouquets of over 25,000 roses to decorate the Salle des Etoiles in the Sporting d’Eté Club complex. Top-flight performers delight the audience, most of them dressed to the nines in designer gowns. While enjoying a banquet. The public is welcome to join this prestigious event…at €750.

Here’s a report from Agence France Presse:

MONACO (AFP) – Hundreds danced to the sounds of stars Jimmy Cliff, the
Wailers and the Skatalites Saturday night at Monaco’s glittering Rose
Ball, a charity event attended for the first time by the children of
Princess Caroline.

The daughter of the late Prince Rainier and Princess Grace, clad in a
black sheath dress, was on hand with husband Prince Ernst August of
Hanover, together with her brother Prince Albert who last year
succeeded their late father Prince Rainier.

Veteran British pop star Shirley Bassey and shipping tycoon Spyros
Niarchos were among celebrities at the annual 750-euros
(US$900)-a-head event on behalf of the Princess Grace Foundation to
raise money for sick children.

Some 800 guests danced to the reggae rhythms of singer Jimmy Cliff of
Reggae Night fame, followed by the Wailers, the group founded by the
late Bob Marley, then Ivory Coast singer Alpha Blondy and the
Skatalites, a group several times nominated for Grammy Awards.

Andrea Casiraghi, 22, Charlotte, 20, and Pierre, 17, the children of
Princess Caroline by her former marriage to the late Stefano
Casiraghi, were present for the first time at gala event.

Princess Stephanie, third child of Rainier and Grace, was not present.

Former Hollywood movie star Grace Kelly married into the Grimaldi
family in 1956. She died in a car accident on the Cote d’Azur in 1982,
aged 53.

Some Monte Carlo Links:
Princess Grace Foundation
Prince’s Palace of Monaco

Click here to read the article from Hello Magazine.

Later in the year, Shirley usually also attends the prestigious Monte-Carlo Red Cross Gala Ball held under the patronage of H.S.H. Prince Albert at the same venue in the first weekend of August. This annual fund-raiser brings out scores of international celebrities for a good cause. Elegantly prepared meals, top entertainers and a display of gowns that will dazzle you.
Information: (+377) 92 16 36 36

Photos from All Time Greatest Movie Songs

Thanks to Ed for these TV screenshot souvenirs of Saturday’s BBC1 show.

Please see my separate report dated 25 March.


All Time Greatest Movie Songs

Broadcast on BBC1 Saturday 25th March 2006 5.45-6.45pm

The TV show was presented in a very professional, colourful and upbeat way. Each artist benefited from a well-designed set, and each was well rehearsed.

The show started with Ronan Keating “You Say It Best When You Say Nothing At All” from Notting Hill.

It was announced that Dame Shirley Bassey was in the top slot.

Top Gun was a massive hit, with “Take My Breath Away” an enduring song. Originally recorded by Berlin, that group’s leading lady Terry Nunn flew over specially from America.

A series of movie and trailer clips included:
The Sound Of Music
Dirty Dancing: (I’ve Had) The Time Of My Life
South Pacific: I’m Gonna Wash That Man Right Out Of My Hair
Batman Forever theme song by Seal
Oklahoma: Oh What A Beautiful Morning
The Full Monty: You Sexy Thing by Hot Chocolate
Evita: Don’t Cry For Me Argentina
Saturday Night Fever: Stayin’ Alive by the Bee Gees which sold 30m copies.

Next Robin Gibb sang “More Than A Woman” from Saturday Night Fever. Mike Dixon was his Musical Director. In a quick interview with Tessa, Robin said that the Bee Gees had got involved with SNF in 1977 by accident. He admitted he had never seen the movie in full.

“Stuck In The Middle With You” was originally a hit by Steelers Wheel.
(Listen to the original song for free here) Adopted in Reservoir Dogs, it was a further hit in 2001 for Louise Redknapp, who sang a jaunty version.

Tess announced a list of movie songs that had also been No. 1 hits:

Men In Black was No. 1 for 4 weeks in 1987 – Four Weddings And A Funeral – “Lady Marmalade” from Moulin Rouge – Days Of Thunder “Show Me Heaven” – Rocky III “Eye Of The Tiger” – Robin Hood “Everything I Do” – Stand By Me – Mermaids “The Shoop Shoop Song” by Cher – 1958’s “Jailhouse Rock” by Elvis.

Andrea Bocelli paid tribute to Elvis Presley by singing, from Blue Hawaii, “Can’t Help Falling I Love”.

Girls Aloud sang “Jump” from Love Actually.

Next a series of clips, featuring celebrities’ favourites. Starting with Louis Walsh who likes “I Will Always Love You” by Whitney Houston. Other celebs’ choices were:
“It Must Have Been Love” from Pretty Woman
“Saturday Night Fever” a great party song.
“Miss Robinson” by Simon & Garfunkel from The Graduate.
“Moon River” from Breakfast At Tiffany’s
“Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head” from Butch Cassidy And The Sundance Kid
“Mustang Sally” from The Commitments was Lulu‘s fave.

Lulu was on stage next to murder “Try A Little Tenderness” from that same movie, The Commitments.

More clips:
“America” West Side Story – “It’s Raining Men” – “He’s A Tramp” – “You’re The One That I Want” from Grease – “You Are The Wind Beneath My Wings” by Bette Middler from 1988’s Beaches – “Somewhere Over The Rainbow” by Judy Garland – “What A Feeling” from Flashdance – and “Singin’ In The Rain”.

Next to perform was the man they call the new Pavarotti, Vittorio Grigolo.
From 1997’s Titanic, he sang “My Heart Will Go On” with a string section standing above clouds of dry ice.

On of a kind, Cyndi Lauper brought a fresh blast of NYC cool with her lively ska beat “Girls Just Want To Have Fun”

And at last, The incredible Shirley Bassey. Top of the bill, of course.

Tessa reminded us that we all love 007. There followed a taster of unforgettable songs that make James Bond the most successful franchise in movie history.

Live And Let Die – Goldfinger (with a brief clip of Shirley in full golden flight) – For Your Eyes Only – Die Another Day – From Russia With Love (with too short a clip of the great Matt Monro) – Licence To Kill – A View To A Kill – The Man With A Golden Gun – The Living Daylights.

To sing three Bond themes is a unique achievement – Shirley is one of our best loved singers – Be prepared to be shaken AND stirred —

Shirley appeared before a full orchestra, in a stunning red and gold gown. With an ethnic gold pattern (like a Moroccan or Indian style) and skirt with three layers.

She sang a special Medley of Bond songs. Goldfinger – Moonraker – Diamonds Are Forever. Perfectly.

She seems to have lost the nerves that were tangible during “Another Audience With” and was in brilliant voice.

Standing ovation. She clapped the orchestra and hugged Mike. Thank goodness Mike Dixon is going to be her Musical Director on the June 2006 tour.

A great show with great performances from every star. But Shirley is a superstar who has entertained generations. As stunning as ever. This programme was a feel-good spectacular, with a hot finale for Shirley Bassey fans.

As Louis Armstrong sang over the closing credits “Oh Yeaah”


Apologies for any errors or omissions

# Where are you?
Why do you hide?
Where is that moonlight trail that leads to your side?
Just like the Moonraker goes in search of his dream of gold
I search for love, for someone to have and hold
I’ve seen your smile in a thousand dreams
Felt your touch and it always seems
You love me
You love me #

Shirley was upstaged – once!

It was a TV show ‘A Night of 100 Stars’ broadcast on July 23 1964 – in glorious low-def black and white.

The Beatles and Shirley Bassey were the official headliners of the show.

After the interval, tables and chairs were put on stage, and many of the stars present were announced to sit on the stage to watch the show. Judy Garland received an ecstatic response when her name was announced. However, Judy was not on the bill to perform.

Shirley devoted “If Love Were All” to Judy, went to her table and embraced her, and then completed her act with “No Regrets”.

When Richard Attenborough came on to close the show, he was drowned out by the audience calling for Judy. Judy took centre stage and said “It’s nice to be home again. All right, what do you want to hear?.”

Judy sang “Over The Rainbow” and “Swanee” and stole the show.

Shirley got on very well with Judy, and has often paid warm tributes to her friendly advice, friendship and sensational talent.

Source: Judy Garland At The London Palladium

Unofficial Dame Shirley Bassey News and Features

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