Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, revealed her ear for music for the first time on television during a Christmas Eve concert.
The former Kate Middleton joined Scottish singer Tom Walker for a special performance during the “Royal Carols: Together at Christmas” ITV special, which aired on Friday, December 24. At Westminster Abbey, the duo performed the singer’s holiday song, “For Those Who Can’t Be Here” with Walker on guitar and vocals and the duchess herself playing the piano.
The duchess was festive as ever in her monochromatic red ensemble as she accompanied Walker throughout their ethereal performance of the poignant tune.
Walker discussed the moment during an interview, describing the duchess as a “warm-hearted, lovely person” to ITV.
“Without doubt, it was a once in a lifetime experience,” Walker said. “I thought she absolutely smashed the performance; it’s not easy to just jump behind a piano with a bunch of musicians you’ve never played with before and record live takes to camera, but she completely nailed it.”
Rehearsals for the performance were kept under wraps to keep the duchess’ special appearance a surprise. Walker himself said he didn’t even realize that she could play the piano.
The COVID-19 friendly rehearsals went well, with Walker explaining, “So, we got together, we rehearsed the song like nine times and by the end of it she’d absolutely nailed it, and then she went away for a couple of days and practiced it, and then we finally got to do the recording of it."
Singers Ellie Goulding and Leona Lewis were also among the performers during the event, which was filmed earlier this month on December 8.
After the special aired, a message was shared on the official Instagram for the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge to celebrate the TV special and its message for viewers. A series of photos capturing various moments throughout the night were shared on Instagram, accompanied by a touching message about the holiday season amid the pandemic.
“Together at Christmas brought together so many inspirational individuals for a night of wonderful carols and music,” the caption read in part. “But above all, it was about celebrating the goodwill, acts of kindness, love, empathy, and compassion which have helped people come through these difficult times.”
Days before the special aired, a short video featuring a message from the duchess herself was shared to Instagram.
“We wanted to say a huge thank you to all those amazing people out there who have supported their communities. We also wanted to recognize those whose struggles perhaps have been less visible too,” she said during the clip.
The duchess acknowledged that over the last two years, the country and its many communities have had their struggles due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“We’ve been through such a bleak time. We’ve seen so many challenges. We’ve lost our loved ones,” she said. “We’ve seen our frontline workers under immense pressure. And also we’ve been more emotionally and socially distanced and isolated from each other.”
The duchess continued, adding, “But I suppose through that separation, we’ve also realized how much we need each other and how acts of kindness and love can really bring us comfort and relief in times of distress.”
“In the congregation we’ve got many inspirational individuals,” the caption continued, picking up where the video cut off. “We owe them a huge debt of gratitude for all they’ve done in bringing people together and supporting their communities.”