Saturday May 9 saw the 70th anniversary of VE Day celebrated in style with A Party to Remember at Horseguards Parade. Unsure of what to expect in terms of the songs Alfie would sing, fans were ecstatic that Alfie had two solo songs and a duet with Katherine Jenkins to end the night – the social media frenzy that followed made it clear that Alfie now has a lot of new fans.
The concert itself was a rip roaring success showcasing the music of the era by performers as diverse as Laura Wright, Elaine Paige, Pixie Lott, Collabro, Rebecca Ferguson and Chas and Dave, although hearing Alexander Armstrong’s great voice was the surprise of the night for some. The music and dance was interspersed throughout with readings from the time by some of our best known actors including Robert Lindsay, Jane Horrocks, Martin Shaw, Lawrence Fox, Bernard Cribbins and Honeysuckle Weeks which really brought home the reason for our celebrations and commemorations. Alfie’s favourite comedy, Dad’s Army also got an honourable mention with a reading from Pike himself, Ian Lavender. Another nice touch was video interviews with service men and women there at the time – most of these were also in the audience.
Alfie first sang the anthemic You’ll Never Walk Alone, a song featured on his album Onward and one that he performs very infrequently. Although the song was enthusiastically received on twitter, it’s pretty fair to say that at least half of the comments generated were concerned with his haircut and specs. Alex Jones, host of BBC One’s The One Show tweeted her appreciation! Alfie then returned a short time later to sing Snow Patrol’s Run – a completely new song for him that nevertheless suited both him and the occasion perfectly. This was the moment that sent twitter into meltdown – mostly positive comments generated by all those new fans. I must just add that he was accompanied on this one by Murray Gould who was instantly recognisable by his silhouette when he walked on stage (it’s the hair!). Lastly, accompanied by the crowd and the rest of the performers, Alfie and Katherine Jenkins (a former forces sweetheart) sang We’ll Meet Again to end the evening. Absolutely spellbinding (thanks Marcia for uploading a compilation video):
Altogether, a fabulous performance all around – bravo to all involved.
Onward is available here:
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