Britain's Queen Elizabeth celebrates 92 years with star-studded concert

Britain's Queen Elizabeth waves at the event next to Prince Charles and Prince William, Duke of Cambridge.
Britain's Queen Elizabeth waves at the event next to Prince Charles and Prince William, Duke of Cambridge.PHOTO: REUTERS
Prince Harry addresses the audience during Queen Elizabeth II's 92nd birthday party at the Royal Albert Hall, in central London on April 21, 2018.
Prince Harry addresses the audience during Queen Elizabeth II's 92nd birthday party at the Royal Albert Hall, in central London on April 21, 2018. PHOTO: EPA-EFE
Prince Charles, the Prince of Wales, addresses the audience during Queen Elizabeth II's 92nd birthday party at the Royal Albert Hall, in central London on April 21, 2018.
Prince Charles, the Prince of Wales, addresses the audience during Queen Elizabeth II's 92nd birthday party at the Royal Albert Hall, in central London on April 21, 2018. PHOTO: EPA-EFE
Queen Elizabeth II receives flowers from a young boy during her 92nd birthday party at the Royal Albert Hall, in central London on April 21, 2018.
Queen Elizabeth II receives flowers from a young boy during her 92nd birthday party at the Royal Albert Hall, in central London on April 21, 2018. PHOTO: EPA-EFE

LONDON (REUTERS) - Britain's Queen Elizabeth attended a star-studded special concert on Saturday (April 21) as the world's oldest and longest-reigning living monarch celebrated her 92nd birthday.

Welsh singer Tom Jones kicked off the show with his hit It's not Unusual, before Elizabeth appeared in the royal box of London's Albert Hall, flanked by her family.

Kylie Minogue, Sting, Ladysmith Black Mambazo and Shaggy were among those on the bill, along with stars of the stage and screen.

The event is a break in tradition for the Queen who usually spends her birthday privately with little public celebration, although there were nationwide events to mark her 90th.

The concert comes at the end of a week in which leaders and dignitaries from 53 countries came to London for the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting, and featured performers from the network of mostly former British colonies.

The Queen is head of the Commonwealth. The major beneficiary of Saturday's event, televised live on BBC TV and radio, will be the Queen's Commonwealth Trust youth charity, of which her grandson Prince Harry was appointed president this week.

Elizabeth was born on April 21, 1926, and became queen in 1952 at the age of 25, meaning she has now reigned for more than 66 years.

 

She still carries out official engagements but her husband Prince Philip, who spent 10 days in hospital this month for a hip replacement, retired from public life last year.

As is customary with monarch's birthdays, soldiers from the King's Troop Royal Horse Artillery and the Honourable Artillery Company fired gun salutes in London's Hyde Park and the Tower of London earlier on Saturday.

Elizabeth also has an "official" birthday in June, which is marked with a large parade of soldiers through central London, known as Trooping the Colour.