Coronation Concert stage in shape of Union Flag which fans out into crowd
The Coronation Concert will feature a Union Flag-shaped stage which fans out to the audience, first look images show.
Around 20,000 members of the public are expected to attend the event next Sunday where they will, according to mock-up pictures released by the BBC, see a stage lit-up in red, white and blue against the background of the East Terrace of Windsor Castle.
The stage will also have a halo-like screen surround the roof, which the broadcaster said will “symbolise the Crown protecting the nation”.
Together with the parapet wall steps in the middle, the BBC said the staging creates multiple levels for the 74-piece classical ensemble – formed from the strings of the Countess of Wessex’s String Orchestra and woodwind, brass and percussion sections from the Bands of the Household Division – to make an abstracted Union Jack.
There are four additional catwalks, which also form the flag shape, so fans can see acts close up.
At the back of the stage the orchestra will sit in front of the castle.
The concert, hosted by Paddington and Downton Abbey actor Hugh Bonneville, will see Hollywood star Tom Cruise, Dynasty actress Dame Joan Collins, adventurer Bear Grylls and singer Sir Tom Jones appear by video message.
The series of pre-recorded sketches will reveal little-known facts about the monarch and will also include moments from beloved literary figure Winnie the Pooh – seemingly echoing the famous moment Paddington Bear drank tea with the Queen during her Platinum Jubilee celebrations.
Take That, Katy Perry and Lionel Richie will be among the musical performers, alongside Paloma Faith, Olly Murs, veteran rock guitarist Steve Winwood, and Nicole Scherzinger of The Pussycat Dolls.
Classical acts including Andrea Bocelli, Welsh bass-baritone Sir Bryn Terfel and Chinese pianist Lang Lang will also perform.
The Royal Ballet, the Royal Opera, the Royal Shakespeare Company, the Royal College of Music and the Royal College of Art will come together for the first time to create a one-off performance featuring Sex Education and Doctor Who star Ncuti Gatwa and Olivier Award nominee Mei Mac.
The Coronation Concert will be broadcast on BBC One, BBC iPlayer, BBC Radio 2 and BBC Sounds on Sunday May 7 from 8pm.