The Duchess of Cambridge was ‘confident’ and ‘friendly’ during her Westminster Abbey carol concert as she ‘quietly adopts more of a matriarchal leadership role’ in The Firm, according to a body language expert.
Kate, 39, joined her family earlier this month for the service in London, recorded for a one-hour festive special, Royal Carols: Together at Christmas, which aired last night.
As well as filming an introduction message which was seen at the start of the broadcast, the mother-of-three also delighted viewers with a surprise piano performance.
Kate, who has tickled the ivories since she was a child, played the piano to accompany singer Tom Walker with his Christmas single ‘For Those Who Can’t Be Here’ together.
And despite the Duchess reportedly feeling ‘nervous’, body language expert Judi James has told FEMAIL that the royal appeared ‘confident, friendly and authentically fun’.
The Duchess of Cambridge (pictured) was ‘confident’ and ‘friendly’ during her Westminster Abbey carol concert as she ‘quietly adopts more of a matriarchal leadership role’ in The Firm, according to a body language expert
Kate (pictured), 39, joined her family earlier this month for the service in London, recorded for a one-hour festive special, Royal Carols: Together at Christmas, which aired last night
In her introduction, Kate said small acts of kindness can bring comfort and relief in the bleakest of times and ‘made us realise how much we need each other’ during the pandemic.
Kate added: ‘We wanted to say a huge thank you to all those amazing people out there who have supported their communities. We also wanted to recognise those whose struggles perhaps have been less visible too.
‘We have been through such a bleak time. We’ve seen so many challenges. We’ve lost our loved ones. We’ve seen our frontline workers under immense pressure. And also we’ve been more emotionally and socially distanced and isolated from each other.
‘But I suppose through that separation, we’ve also realised how much we need each other and how acts of kindness and love can really bring us comfort and relief in times of distress.’
Commenting on Kate’s introduction message, Judi said: ‘Watching Kate deliver this very personal and individual video message with its emphatic visual themes of warmth, kindness and Christmas card-style visuals, it is hard to imagine that the format is anything other than a fledgling version of the Queen’s speech from the woman who will one day hold that role.
‘Over the past couple of years Kate has been re-positioned in the royal Firm to have a much more central, powerful and high-profile role in her own right.
As well as filming an introduction message which was seen at the start of the broadcast, the mother-of-three also delighted viewers with a surprise piano performance (pictured)
‘Previously appearing as William’s wife and part of that pitch-perfect and mirrored double act, she is now championing her own global projects and causes as well as quietly adopting more of a matriarchal leadership role in the family.’
Judi added that Kate has also been showing some excellent performance skills in front of the camera ‘with some almost professional-looking presenting slots to promote her messages’.
‘This newest offering shows her using body language signals that are at the same time assured and confident but also self-effacing enough to make her appear friendly and accessible,’ said Judi.
‘In her video we can see Kate using several subtle but important gestures to add emphasis to her words. She times her blinks to do this and there are some small body movements as well.
‘By using these she makes the words she is speaking her own, rather than making it sound as though she is working from a script written by an aide.’
The body language expert also said that Kate’s smile suggested ‘authentic fun and good humour’.
Kate (seen far left) and Tom Walker (centre) gave an emotional performance by candlelight at Westminster Abbey
Walker praised Kate (pictured playing the piano during Friday’s aired ITV performance) for being an ‘amazing musician’ and said that although she was quite nervous when they first rehearsed in a studio, she went away and ‘invested a lot of time and energy into getting it right’
‘A fake laugh will often involve just the mouth, but a genuine laugh like Kate’s here involves a softening and crinkling of the eye expression, too.
‘Kate’s nose also wrinkles as she smiles and she pulls her chin in, which again signals genuine good humour,’ said Judi.
The Together At Christmas carol service was attended by ‘unsung heroes’ from across the UK in recognition of their ‘inspirational’ efforts to protect and care for those around them.
Nominations were drawn from local Lieutenancies, community networks, charitable organisations and patronages of Her Majesty The Queen, The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall, and The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.
Individuals who The Duke and Duchess met and spent time with during their recent engagements and project work were also present, alongside armed forces personnel who were involved in Operation Pitting – airlifting families out of Kabul – young carers and faith leaders.
‘We owe them a huge debt of gratitude for all they’ve done in bringing people together and supporting their communities,’ Kate added.
The service (pictured) celebrated the ‘incredible work’ of pandemic heroes including charity workers, teachers and volunteers
Kate’s coat dress (pictured right), thought to be worth around £3,000, is a new ensemble for the Duchess, who previously wore a black version of the garment to attend Prince Philip’s funeral in April
Meanwhile the royal (pictured right) added a touch of glamour to her outfit with the Queen Mother’s sapphire and diamond fringe earrings, and recycled her £640 red suede bag by Miu Miu for the occasion, first worn in September 2016
Introducing star performers including Ellie Goulding, Leona Lewis, Tom Walker and the Westminster Abbey choir, Kate added that music had been ‘so important to me during the pandemic as I think it was to so many people too’.
‘But above all it’s about celebrating the goodwill, the acts of kindness, love, empathy, and compassion to help people come through these difficult times,’ she added.
The service also incorporates readings delivered by The Duke of Cambridge, British Paralympian and junior doctor Kim Daybell, actor Tom Felton, and presenter Kate Garraway, in addition to a performance of To The Day, a poignant composition written for the service by poet and writer Lemn Sissay.
The Duchess’ message was recorded on December 7 during a visit to the abbey to help with preparations, including decorating Christmas trees donated by Her Majesty The Queen from Windsor Great Park and arranging wreaths donated by the Royal Horticultural Society.
Kate leaves viewers ‘speechless’ with ‘touching’ piano performance at Westminster Abbey service – and fans say she is ‘just like Diana’ after late royal surprised guests in 1988 with her musical talents
Kate Middleton has left viewers ‘speechless’ with her ‘touching and mesmerising’ piano performance at her Westminster Abbey carol concert after it aired on TV last night.
The Duchess of Cambridge, 39, stunned onlookers as she played the piano to accompany singer Tom Walker with a poignant song performed by candlelight at the service in London, which was a royal family affair.
Kate, who has tickled the ivories since she was a child, recorded the song with Walker in the Chapter House of the Abbey, one day before a community carol service on December 8 which was shown on ITV yesterday evening.
They played his Christmas single ‘For Those Who Can’t Be Here’ together – and despite the Duchess reportedly feeling ‘quite nervous’, fans rushed to Twitter to praise her performance.
Others noted how Kate seemingly channelled her late mother-in-law Princess Diana, who surprised onlookers in 1988 in Australia with her own piano performance.
Kate Middleton (pictured) has left viewers ‘speechless’ with her ‘touching and mesmerising’ piano performance at her Westminster Abbey carol concert after it aired on TV last night
Some royal fans noted how Kate seemingly channelled her late mother-in-law Princess Diana, who surprised onlookers in 1988 in Australia with her own piano performance (pictured)
Despite Kate reportedly feeling ‘quite nervous’, fans rushed to Twitter to praise her performance (above)
During Prince Charles and Princess Diana’s visit to Melbourne on their 1988 royal tour of Australia, they visited Melbourne College of Arts.
When there, the princess delighted well-wishers by playing part of Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 2, apparently without any sheet music.
It was Diana’s second royal tour of Australia, taking place five months after her first visit, which was recently fictionalised on Netflix’s The Crown.
The news footage of the moment shows Prince Charles and Princess Diana walking into a rehearsal room where musicians are playing in a semi-circle.
Charles is cajoled into playing the cello by Professor Henri Touzeau, his former music tutor who later worked in Australia.
The prince obligingly plays a few notes before putting down the bow. The professor then turns his attention to the princess, who is stylishly dressed in a white and navy suit and matching wide-brimmed hat.
Reaction: Some fans pointed out the similarities between Kate and Diana’s piano performance
During Prince Charles and Princess Diana’s visit to Melbourne on their 1988 royal tour of Australia, they visited Melbourne College of Arts. When there, the princess delighted well-wishers by playing part of Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 2, apparently without any sheet music (pictured)
After some initial hesitation, Princess Diana takes a seat at the piano and begins to play the concerto, which the newsreader describes as ‘complicated’.
Princess Diana was an accomplished musician and started playing piano as a young girl.
She took after her maternal grandmother, Ruth Boche, Baroness Fermoy, who was a talented pianist and studied with Alfred Cortot at the Paris Conservatoire in the 1920s.
One fan noted of Kate and Diana’s performances: ‘She is just like Princess Diana, she played the piano too, and quite well in fact.’
Another said: ‘Princess Diana played the piano good too! How lovely the Duchess shares same gift. It’s been wonderful seeing all her talents, from photography to beekeeping and now the piano.’
Kate plays the grand piano while Tom Walker sings his emotional Christmas single For Those Who Can’t Be Here, which aired on ITV on Christmas Eve
Reaction: Meanwhile, viewers were full of praise for the Duchess of Cambridge following her performance, with one saying: ”Such a beautiful and moving performance.’
Meanwhile, viewers were full of praise for the Duchess of Cambridge following her performance, with one saying: ”Such a beautiful and moving performance.’
Another said: ‘This is absolutely gorgeous and Kate on the piano for Tom Walker?? Absolute magic.’
A third added: ‘Oh my… Catherine is playing the piano. Even the cat froze, it just wasn’t sure if it was safe to continue noisily attacking the tree!
A fourth said: ‘This song, and having Duchess Kate play the piano, was so touching for anyone who lost someone recently or not. The Holidays always make you remember them. Thank you!’