Prince Charles paid emotional personal respect to his mother, Queen Elizabeth, on Saturday during her platinum jubilee celebrations, praising the monarch for uniting the nation and continuing to make history during his 70-year reign.
Charles spoke at a pop concert that began with a comic sketch of a 96-year-old monarch drinking tea with Paddington Bear and beating a tune to the Queen’s anthem “We Will Rock You” on her porcelain cup.
The heir to the throne appeared before the end of the concert in front of Buckingham Palace. While images of Elizabeth’s reign were displayed on the walls, Charles, 73, said the Jubilee gave the country a chance to give thanks.
“Your Majesty, you have been with us in our difficult times. And you are bringing us together to celebrate moments of pride, joy and happiness,” Charles told a crowd of 22,000 people as millions watched them on television.
“You met us and talked to us. You are laughing and crying with us and, most importantly, you have been there for us, for these 70 years. You promised to serve your whole life – you keep delivering. That’s why we’re here, ”he added, calling the queen“ mom ”.
Elizabeth herself was not present, as she missed numerous events on the occasion of the jubilee due to “episodic mobility problems” due to which she recently canceled her engagements.
The introductory video with the fictional character Paddington had an echo in 2012 when the Queen appeared with the most famous British fictional spy, James Bond, in a video for the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games in London.
In a video on Saturday, she told Paddington that she always keeps the Bear’s favorite – a jam sandwich – in her ever-present purse. The show was then opened by Queen’s “We Will Rock You,” with other performers including the cast of “Hamilton,” Alicia Keys and Diana Ross.
The four days of celebrations marking the monarch’s seven decades as queen began on Thursday with a military parade and a flight of the Royal Air Force, with the National Thanksgiving Service on Friday.
Addressing the audience on Saturday’s show, Charles praised his mother and admitted another absentee – his father, Prince Philip, who passed away last year at 99.
“My dad would enjoy the show and join us with all his heart in celebrating everything you continue to do for your country and your people,” he said.
“You keep making history.”
Elizabeth ascended the throne at the age of 25 after the death of her father George VI in 1952, inheriting dominance over Britain still recovering from the devastation of World War II and with Winston Churchill as prime minister.
In all, there were 14 prime ministers and 14 American presidents during her reign; the Berlin Wall rose and fell; Britain joined and left the European Union; and her nation’s once powerful empire disintegrated, replaced by a Commonwealth of 54 nations. Elizabeth was key in creating the latter and many consider his success to be her greatest achievement.
Polls show that a comfortable majority believes the monarchy should remain. A recent Ipsos survey supported the queen in 9 out of 10 respondents. But Charles is less popular and support among young people is waning.
Supporters see the queen as a source of soft power in the world and a stabilizing factor: a bridge between the nation’s past and its present.
As Charles paid his respects, projections of the queen, whom he had chosen, dawned on the walls of the palace.
These included a carriage ride with former South African President Nelson Mandela during his 1996 state visit and her famous 2012 handshake with former IRA guerrilla commander Martin McGuinness, who later became the First Deputy Minister of Northern Ireland.
Sunday will mark the last day of the celebration, when singer Ed Sheeran will join some 10,000 performers and armed forces in a parade that will follow a route similar to the one the queen passed at the coronation.
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