An exciting day was had by all at last Monday’s Commonwealth Day Observance. Her Majesty The Queen was joined by The Duke of Edinburgh, The Prince of Wales, The Duchess of Cornwall and The Countess of Wessex for the celebrations in Westminster Abbey.
2,000 guests, including 1,000 students, were also present to enjoy the celebrations, which included a powerful rendition of ‘Halleluja’ from Canadian singer-songwriter Rufus Wainwright and an impressive performance from South African jazz musician Hugh Masekela.
Guests were also treated to a performance from the Descarga Dance Company, a heartfelt speech from renowned primatologist Dr Jane Goodall, who emphasised the importance of protecting our planet, and an address from award-winning Nigerian author Chimamanda Ngoze Adichie, who spoke on the importance of recognising diversity.
The Queen’s prerecorded Commonwealth Day Message 2012, in which she talks about the benefits of “today’s technology-based world” and “connecting cultures”, was also played to the assembled guests.
The speech was especially relevant to the 1,000 students, given that each of them – including the three who presented posies to The Queen, The Duchess of Cornwall and The Countess of Wessex – had won their tickets to the Observance by taking part in the Jubilee Time Capsule.
A short video of Jubilee Time Capsule highlights, was screened before the Observance started, giving guests an opportunity to spot their entries on the Abbey’s big screens.
And given the excited feedback from the students, the positive comments from assembled guests, and The Queen’s smile, it’s safe to conclude that this year’s Commonwealth Day Observance was a resounding success!