TORONTO — Elton John paid tribute to the late Queen Elizabeth II at his closing Toronto present Thursday, calling her an “inspiring” presence in his life.
“She led the nation via a few of our biggest and darkest moments with grace and decency and real heat,” the British singer mentioned halfway via his live performance.
“I’m glad she’s at peace and I’m glad she’s at relaxation. She served and he or she labored bloody laborious.”
Earlier within the day, Buckingham Palace introduced the Queen had died at 96. She was the longest-serving British monarch and Canadian head of state.
“We have fun her life tonight with music,” John advised the cheering crowd as he moved right into a efficiency of his 1974 observe “Don’t Let the Solar Go Down on Me.”
The 75-year-old musician has many ties to the Royal Household.
In 1988, he was knighted by the Queen for his contributions to music and charitable organizations.
He’s additionally carried out at quite a few occasions for the royals, together with the funeral of Diana, Princess of Wales in 1997, the place he sang a rewritten model of his 1973 music “Candle within the Wind.”
John’s Toronto live performance was the second of two nights at Rogers Centre and a part of Farewell Yellow Brick Highway, billed as his closing tour.
He’ll play two additional Canadian dates on Oct. 21 and 22 in Vancouver earlier than finally heading to Europe for reveals into mid-2023.
John opened his live performance wearing a black swimsuit with a bejewelled trim and a pink pair of glasses to match. Losing little time, he slipped behind his grand piano to start.
“That is my final ever live performance in Toronto so I’ve obtained to make it particular,” he mentioned. “We’ll have the perfect time.”
From there it was an evening of acquainted tunes, together with a gradual run of his classics, “Tiny Dancer,” “Rocket Man” and “Levon” amongst them. After every, he rose from his bench to obtain thundering applause from the group with open arms and a toothy smile.
He used his encore to sing “Chilly Coronary heart,” the inescapable international hit that despatched him and pop singer Dua Lipa to the highest of the Canadian charts earlier this 12 months.
“Chilly Coronary heart,” which blends a number of of John’s older hits with an digital beat by remixer Pnau, left him within the uncommon place of sitting behind his piano with out enjoying it. He determined to clap alongside to the beat as he sang the verses and inspired the group to affix in.
John scattered the present with references to his Canadian connections, stating that he deliberate to have lunch with one in every of his old skool buddies who now lives in Toronto.
He took a second to thank his Toronto-born husband David Furnish, with whom he has two youngsters, proudly mentioning that each of the youngsters have Canadian passports.
And he assured everybody this may actually be his closing tour, saying he’s “had sufficient applause in my life.”
“I need to be with my household, come to Toronto and never must work,” he mentioned.
Closing the present, John thanked the viewers, stating a number of followers in elaborate Elton-inspired outfits, together with one in a physique swimsuit harking back to the winged satan from his 2019 biopic “Rocketman” and one other in a sequined baseball uniform.
“I’m not going to overlook you as a result of I’ll be coming again,” he added. “I simply received’t be enjoying anymore.”
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