Ed Sheeran and Bill Bailey to star in Queen’s Jubilee pageant

The Independent
The Independent

Puppet corgis, a giant 3D wire bust of the Queen and a musical tribute led by Ed Sheeran are just a handful of the things we can expect from the “People’s Pageant”, the carnival finale of the monarch ’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations, it has been revealed.

Celebrities confirmed to be participating in the spectacle include Sir Cliff Richard , Jeremy Irons, Jayne Torvill and Christopher Dean, Gary Lineker, Rosie Jones , Kadeena Cox, Alan Titchmarsh, Heston Blumenthal, James Martin, Bill Bailey and Gok Wan.

Money for the £15m event has been raised by corporate sponsors and individuals and is expected to be watched by up to a billion people from around the globe.

More than 10,000 people will be involved in staging the celebration, including more than 6,000 volunteers and performers, the military, and 2,500 members of the public.

The event will take place outside Buckingham Palace and the surrounding streets on the afternoon of Sunday 5 June, the last day of the four-day bank holiday weekend marking the Queen ’s 70 years on the throne.

The procession will cover a three kilometre route echoing the Queen’s coronation.

Highlights will include an aerial artist suspended under a vast helium balloon, known as a heliosphere, bearing the image of the Queen.

Other key moments include a giant oak tree flanked with maypole dancers, a huge moving wedding cake sounding out Bollywood hits, a towering dragon and three-storey-high beasts.

The Queen will also be represented in her younger days through a 20ft puppet, surrounded by a pack of mischievous corgis, which will create “humourous chaos” along The Mall.

The royal affair will be split into four acts: For Queen and Country, The Time of Our Lives, Let's Celebrate, and Happy and Glorious.

This will include one of the largest military spectacles in modern history, a fleet of iconic cars from James Bond films, Daleks, and a procession of strolling Lambeth walkers, jivers, hippies, teddy boys, mods, glam rockers, punks, new romantics, ravers, Britpoppers, junglists and breakbeaters.

The Queen's 1947 wedding to the Duke of Edinburgh will be honoured with a giant four-tier wedding cake baked by acrobatic cooks on the move and housing a sound system playing a medley of Bollywood tunes to reflect the coming together of people across the UK and Commonwealth.

Cirque Bijou, from Bristol, will stage the Unity chapter with disabled and able-bodied performers as well as the Paralympic rugby and basketball teams, and BMX stunt cyclists.

The final act will conclude with the singing of the national anthem.

David Zolkwer, the show's director, said the celebration was “by and for the people”.

He said: “It's about ordinary people coming together from far and wide to do extraordinary things; real people with delightful, authentic stories to tell; taking centre stage in a spectacular performance filled with wonder, warmth, wit and so much humanity.

“It will be all about how, through the recollections and stories and experiences we share, we can see how we are all connected - through time; to each other; and to the Queen.”

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