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After pageant, a starry concert for Queen

London: After the deluge during the Thames pageant yesterday, a musical extravaganza featuring the great and the good is scheduled for Queen Elizabeth outside Buckingham Palace this evening as part of Diamond Jubilee events to celebrate 60 years of her reign.

On the stage will be the pop royalty, such as Sir Elton John, Stevie Wonder and Sir Paul McCartney, Kylie Minogue and Robbie Williams.

The event will also attract a global audience through live telecast by the BBC and other channels.
The event, to be attended by over 10,000 members of the public selected through a ballot, will also feature a special song sung by 200 people from around the Commonwealth. The song has been co-written by Gary Barlow and Andrew Lloyd Webber.

Organised by the BBC, the concert will be attended by the Queen and other members of the royal family, but it is unlikely that the Queen will stay for the entire duration of the concert. The weather office has predicted a dry evening today.

After the concert, from 10 pm (local time), thousands of Jubilee beacons will be lit, culminating in the Queen lighting the national beacon at 10.30 pm. Nearly 4,500 beacons will be lit across the globe.

Bruno Peek, pageant-master of the Queen`s Diamond Jubilee beacons, said: "We set out to have 2,012 beacons, which would have been the most ever for this type of occasion. To have reached double that figure reflects the national and worldwide respect and affection for the Queen and the desire to celebrate her 60-year reign."

The network of beacons across the UK will be placed on historic landmarks, hill-top vantage points and famous mountains.

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