As is the norm at all globally televised events such as these, the performing arts were well represented at the coronation of King Charles III. Notable among the Hollywood celebrities who were present at the majestic Westminster Abbey, a couple of hours before the coronation, as listed by ‘Variety’, included Judi Dench, Emma Thompson, Stephen Fry, Lionel Richie and Katy Perry.
Although Charles ascended to the throne the minute Queen Elizabeth II died last year, the coronation was a ceremony to mark the formal investiture of his regal powers.
The 2,200-strong congregation who gathered to watch the St Edward’s Crown being placed atop King Charles’ head includes members of the royal family, including Prince Harry consigned to the third row, politicians, aristocrats, international dignitaries and celebrities.
There were a number of familiar faces in the audience hailing from the worlds of media and entertainment, says ‘Variety’. Among them were ‘I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here!’ hosts Anthony McPartlin and Declan Donnelly, better known by their stage moniker ‘Ant and Dec’, adventurer Bear Grylls, ‘Absolutely Fabulous’ star Joanna Lumley, ‘Mr Bean’ actor Rowan Atkinson, singer Lionel Richie (who is also set to perform at the coronation concert on Sunday evening), Stereophonics frontman Kelly Jones, British ‘Vogue’ editor Edward Enninful, designer Stella McCartney, ‘The Repair Shop’ star Jay Blades and the magician Dynamo, notes ‘Variety’.
Some of the celebrities were invited thanks to their links with King Charles‘ philanthropic organisation, The Prince’s Trust — Ant and Dec, Lionel Richie and Edward Enninful are all ambassadors for the charity — while others were beneficiaries.
Dynamo began his career thanks to a business loan from The Prince’s Trust, which bought him the camera and laptop he used to grow his global audience, while the Stereophonics received a grant from the charity at the beginning of their careers that enabled them to buy speakers for their live shows, notes ‘Variety’.
Australian singer-songwriter-actor Nick Cave, who was one of the invitees, felt compelled to explain his presence at the event last week in a blogpost titled “Why the f**k are you going to the King’s coronation?”
Cave, as quoted by ‘Variety’, wrote on his blog: “I am not a monarchist, nor am I a royalist, nor am I an ardent republican for that matter. What I am also not is so spectacularly incurious about the world and the way it works, so ideologically captured, so damn grouchy, as to refuse an invitation to what will more than likely be the most important historical event in the U.K. of our age. Not just the most important, but the strangest, the weirdest.”
Cave continued: “I hold an inexplicable emotional attachment to the Royals — the strangeness of them, the deeply eccentric nature of the whole affair that so perfectly reflects the unique weirdness of Britain itself.”
He added that he found himself welling up during the funeral of King Charles’s mother, Queen Elizabeth II, last September. “I’m just drawn to that kind of thing — the bizarre, the uncanny, the stupefyingly spectacular, the awe-inspiring.”