Andrea Bocelli

Day Four at American Express presents BST Hyde Park

credit Dave Hogan

With extraordinary special guests:

Hans Zimmer      Seal      Zucchero

Nadine Sierra      Isabel Leonard      Loren Allred

Andrea Griminelli     Rusanda Panfili     Luca Micheletti

Joaquina     Virginia Bocelli

And a full supporting line up

Katherine Jenkins       Matteo Bocelli

Jamie Duffy        Billy Lockett      Cuca Roseta

Dardust     Olivia Belli    Ayanna Witter-Johnson

Hosted by Myleene Klass

Friday 5 July

Celebrating 30 years in music, Andrea Bocelli led a mind-blowing line-up for day four of American Express presents BST Hyde Park, making tonight the largest classical concert to take place in Europe this century. Wearing a black tuxedo, and a golden jacket, Bocelli was joined by a star-studded list of special guests, including German film-script composer, Hans Zimmer, legendary British singer-songwriter, Seal, and Italian gospel and blues artist, Zucchero.

The phenomenal set took place in two parts, with the tenor beginning with the powerful “La Donna è Mobile”. Joining him on stage were a host of stand-out classical performers, from Grammy award-winning singer Joaquina, soprano Nadine Sierra, mezzo Isabel Leonard, baritone Luca Micheletti and soprano Henna Munn to Bocelli’s 12-year-old daughter, Virginia. Each performance was supported by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, including flautist Andrea Griminelli and violinist Rusanda Panfili, and the Crouch End Festival Chorus.

The second section of the show began with a stunning Bocelli-Zuccherro duet, “Miserere”, while old films of Pavorotti, Bocelli and Zuccherro played on the screens. Zucchero, who introduced Bocelli to Pavarotti during the seeds of his career, followed with his famous 80s hit “Senza Una Donna”, backed by the Crouch End Festival Chorus.

This epic performance was soon followed by the arrival of Seal on stage, who showcased back-to-back vocal magic with “Amazing Grace” and “My Way”. “I like singing with an incredible orchestra,” Seal declared. “It’s like lying on the most comfortable bed you could ever imagine.”

The 61-year-old singer went on to perform the iconic “Kiss From A Rose”, much to the delight of the wide-eyed crowd. “I’m not used to this,” he spoke with honesty. “This is a song that I wrote maybe 40 years ago, and I’ve played it a lot of times but I’ve never played it quite like this before.”

“Next, I’m going to introduce a little girl. Her name is Virginia and she is my daughter,” Bocelli announced to a crowd that was already so much in awe, they were almost silent. As Virginia arrived on stage, Bocelli greeted her, “Virginia, welcome, are you ready? We will do the song that we both do at home, okay? But now it’s more important to sing well.” What then unfolded was a mesmerising performance of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah”.

Just as it appeared it couldn’t get any better, Bocelli brought on perhaps his most famous act, “an incredible talent and an incredible composer”, Hans Zimmer. The pair wasted no time in launching into “Nelle Tue Mani”, taken from the “Gladiator” soundtrack, quickly followed by “Chevalier de Sangreal” and “Time” from Da Vinci Code and Inception, respectively. Special guests, Loren Allred and Joaquina on “Romanza”, was followed by a Bocelli-Allred duet of “The Prayer”.

The final 15 minutes was a special guest spectacular, with Bocelli joined by Zimmer for the famous “Con Te Partirò” or “Time To Say Goodbye”. And then, the finale – Bocelli singing “Nessun Dorma”. There couldn’t have been a more fitting end to Europe’s largest classical concert to date.

_______

Supporting Andrea Bocelli tonight was the best-selling classical music artist in the UK of the last 25 years, Britain’s national treasure, Katherine Jenkins. The 44-year-old Welsh mezzo-soprano arrived on stage wearing a shimmering silver trouser suit with trail and bodice, just as the heavens opened. “Hyde Park, you are looking very fabulous in your ponchos,” she laughed. “It’s so wonderful to be here, and to sing for you all today.”

Later in her set, Jenkins took a moment to celebrate her London location, before launching into the beautiful “A Nightingale Sang In Berkeley Square” alongside her friend and saxophonist Yolanda Brown. “When I knew I was getting to perform on this amazing stage, I knew I wanted to perform an iconic London song, and this song really came to mind – it’s a song based just down the road on the other side of the park here,” she noted.

Continuing against a backdrop of raindrops, Jenkins embraced the dismal weather wholeheartedly, at one point stopping her set to say, “I’m going to break with the programme as I just thought of a song we should be singing,” she grinned, before popping open a white umbrella and launching into “Singing In The Rain”. “Sing along please, everybody. This is British summer weather, let’s embrace it. You guys are amazing, I love your attitude!” Soon after, she donned a pair of green Hunter wellies, before bringing her set to a climax with her own offering of Pavarotti’s “Nessun Dorma”.

Matteo Bocelli opened the Great Oak Stage, warming up the audience for a sensational evening of classical music. “I feel very privileged to be here,” he told the audience. “I know it’s a cloudy day but we are going to have some fun.” The son of Andea Bocelli, made his debut in 2018 on his father’s track “Fall On Me” and has previously performed for royalty at the British Royal Variety Performance. The rising star even made his acting debut in Idris Elba and Tilda Swinton blockbuster, “Three Thousand Years of Longing”. Today, he performed a selection of tracks from his new album, “Matteo”, alongside  a special version of Frankie Valli’s “Can’t Take My Eyes Off You”. He also showcased his astounding vocals with a haunting rendition of Elvis Presley’s “I Can’t Help Falling In Love With You”.

He has reached No.1 in the classical charts in several countries around the world and accumulated over 60 million Spotify plays with his single “Solas” and now, 23-year-old musician and composer Jamie Duffy, can say he has headlined The Rainbow Stage at BST Hyde Park. The County Monaghan-born singer juggled playing the Irish flute and piano during the performance – sometimes playing both at the same time. He looked proud as he told his audience braving the rain: “I’m very excited to be here. We’ve flown in from Dublin to be here.” Duffy has previously discussed how his love for music was inherited from his grandmother, who was a DJ at one of rural Ireland’s first ever nightclubs in the 1960s.

Self-proclaimed as a ‘piano man’, Billy Lockett from Northampton tantalised the crowd with tracks from his latest LP, “Abdington Grove”. The singer has toured with the likes of Birdy, KT Tunstall and Lana Del Rey – and has even opened for Electric Light Orchestra and Lewis Capaldi, but it was his first time playing this London royal park. He exclaimed: “I can’t believe we’re playing Hyde Park!”

Portuguese singer, Cuca Roseta, 42, sampled early 19th Century Lisbon in her specialist style of fado which traditionally emphasises feelings of resignation and melancholia. However, the 42-year-old singer adds a touch of upbeat world music into her portfolio – introducing the crowd to a branch of music unique to her. “I sang in June last year with Andrea, and then he invited me to BST to bring our traditions from Portugal,” she revealed to the crowd.

Italian musician and record producer Dardust, mezzo-soprano Olivia Bell, and cellist, singer and composer Ayanna Witter-Johnson completed a day of classical prestige.

American Express presents BST Hyde Park continues tomorrow, Saturday 6 July with headliner Robbie Williams, plus Seal, Gaz Coombes, Shaun Ryder’s Black Grape, Kate Nash, Soft Play, James Smith, Ryan Gibb, Ellur, Davina Michelle and Ben Kidson.

www.bst-hydepark.com | @bsthydepark

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