A packed outdoor audience were last night treated to a free concert which brought the 67th Eurovision event at which United By Music was brought together in such an amazing way,
A perfect rendition of the opening sound to any Eurovision contest, an extract from the Te Deum and followed by Ukraine’s flag waving Ruslana helped bring tears to the eyes of many of the audience, which was a mix between those supporting Ukraine and some of the many Ukrainians living here or those who had fled their homeland over the past year and since Russia’s invasion.
Ruslana is a woman who carries her country on her sleeve and has been a vocal defender of her homeland to Russian aggression. She took to conducting the English National Opera orchestra and singers as she dived in to her 2004 Wild Dances winner at Eurovision, which became a rallying cry for the Orange Revolution that same year.
Ireland’s Linda Martin chipped in with her 1992 winning song and returned to the stage later to sing Lulu’s winning song Boom Bang a Bang.
Not to be outdone the fabulous Ellie Neate and Ella Taylor performed the high pitched Zero Gravity with not just style but aplomb as they headed up the scales.
Liverpool pop singer Sonia took not just to the stage but was also able to work the listening crowd and orchestra with her rendition to Better The Devil You Know, which finished second in 1993.
The powerful voice of Russell Watson was next to take to the stage with the classic Eurovision rendering of Volare, before he returned later to deliver a scintillating three tenors performance of Grande Amore, with Zwakele Tshabalala and Themba Mvula.
Conchita’s Rise Like A Phoenix was given an excellent outing by the ENO chorus, before Riverdance with Ellie Neate and Irish dancers gave a perfect rendering of the challenging dance move to the chorus.
Collin Shay of the ENO performed a double offering of the song Diva and ended on a high note withlast year’s UK entry Spaceman.
The curtain came down on a wonderful event with the ENO soloists and the crowd singing Abba’s Waterloo.