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Last Updated: Wednesday, 30 July, 2003, 21:32 GMT 22:32 UK
Prom marks Queen's milestone
The Queen and Prince Philip greet some of the music fans during an interval
The Queen and Prince Philip met some of the Prommers
The Queen has attended a musical extravaganza marking the 50th anniversary of her coronation.

She was accompanied by the Duke of Edinburgh at the BBC Proms on Wednesday night - the couple's second ever Proms visit, and their first in nearly 10 years.

Music fans known as Prommers, gathered in the standing area in the Royal Albert Hall, shouted out a hearty Latin welcome as the Queen arrived, which she had received on her coronation.

They yelled "Arena To Regina - Vivat, Vivat, Vivat" - which calls for long life for the Queen.

The Royal couple were then treated to a special Proms evening of sounds and songs from 1953.

During the interval they went to the standing area to meet some members of the crowd.

[Prince Philip] said we looked like we came from Butlins - he was very funny
Proms Steward Peggy Duffin

Chris Cann, 30, from Fulham - a regular at the summer season of concerts - led the series of chants.

He said later: "It's what was shouted by the Westminster Cathedral scholars as the monarch entered Westminster Abbey for the Coronation.

"The Queen asked if we were the ones that shouted the Vivats.

"I said 'I'm afraid so Ma'am'.

"She said she was much amused."

British works

Peggy Duffin, from Bromley, Kent, has worked as a steward for the concert venue for six years and was dressed in her bright red work blazer.

After meeting the Duke of Edinburgh, she said: "He said we looked like we came from Butlins. He was very funny."

The programme began with William Walton's Coronation Te Deum which was specially composed for coronation year.

Queen's Prom
Walton: Coronation Te Deum
Elgar: Sea Pictures
Grainger: Molly on the Shore; Shepherd's Hey
Turnage: Momentum
Tippett: Dance, Clarion Air
Bax: November Woods
Britten: The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra

Mezzo soprano Catherine Wyn-Rogers then sang Sir Edward Elgar's Sea Pictures in a programme containing British and Commonwealth works.

Music by a living British composer - Mark-Anthony Turnage's Momentum - and folk songs by Australian composer Percy Grainger was also included.

Sir Arnold Bax's centenary was celebrated with November Woods, and the concert ended with Benjamin Britten's The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra.

BBC Proms Controller Nicholas Kenyon said: "We wanted to look back to 1953 and do something from that time and then bring the story of British music more up to date."

In 1953, a number of composers wrote music not for the coronation ceremony itself, but simply in celebration of the occasion.

Five choirs and the BBC Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Sir Andrew Davis, entertained the royal audience.

The Queen's first visit to the Proms was in 1994.

The concert was broadcast live on BBC Radio 3 and on digital TV on BBC Four. It is also being shown on BBC One the following day.


What do you think of the Queen's Prom? Do you think the right pieces of music have been chosen?

The question is "Right for whom?" This is a carefully put together programme which represents the output of some of our best and most well-known composers. But some pieces strike me as a little obscure for Her Maj, who is not known to be a classical buff or enthusiast. On the other hand, I am sure it will be appreciated by other Promenaders.
Anon, UK

Absolutely! I'm going tonight on the basis that it's going to be some excellent pieces (I'm especially looking forward to the Young Persons Guide to the Orchestra and the Te Deum) with an excellent orchestra and an excellent conductor (who won't mess around with the arrangement of the National Anthem like another I could mention).
Steve, UK

The selection is a very British set, and there are certain pieces that could have been added except that they are already in the Proms program. It does have a contemporary feel to it. Some of the earlier composers could have been included to provide balance. Still, should be a good bash and I hope it gets Lizzie's toes tapping or at least rattle her jewellery.
Neal Rollason, Brentford, Middlesex.

There should be some Andrew Lloyd Webber - after all he is the official composer to the Queen.
Matthew, UK

Sadly I feel this rather festive programme will be wasted on her Maj who I imagine would prefer a night in with a challenging puzzle and a glass of gin.
Leo , UK

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