Music legend Elton John played a sell-out open-air concert at Longleat on 12 June as part of the Safari Park’s 50th anniversary celebrations.
15,000 people danced the night away in the sunshine to a selection of Elton John’s greatest hits including I Guess That’s Why They Call It The Blues, Rocket Man, Tiny Dancer, Your Song, Crocodile Rock and Don’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me. He also played tracks from his recently released 32nd studio album Wonderful Crazy Night.
Elton was dressed fittingly for the venue in a colourful outfit featuring a jacket with sequinned flamingos on the back. He wasn’t the only one to dress for the occasion as many people were sporting flamboyant glasses.
The crowd were loving Elton and they ended up dancing in the pit during the last few songs. One lucky girl got to join the band on stage and showed no stage fright as she entertained the crowd with her energetic dancing.
The evening ended with Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting and Crocodile Rock and a huge cheer for Sir Elton John who had made a point of thanking his audiences over the years.
The show, supported by talented Northern Irish musician and singer-songwriter Foy Vance, was part of a series of UK dates for the multi-award-winning, best-selling British artist who won an Oscar in 1994 for the music for Disney’s ‘The Lion King’.
Ceawlin Thynn, Viscount Weymouth said: “We are delighted to welcome Sir Elton John to Longleat to help celebrate our 50th anniversary.
“For over half a century we have worked hard to thrill millions of visitors, and having one of the most inspiring musicians lead our celebrations will ensure we continue to do this into the future.
“Events such as this demonstrate our commitment to provide the very best entertainment since the first major performance at Longleat by the Rolling Stones in the 1964.”
In his five-decade career Elton John has sold more than 300 million records, making him one of the best-selling music artists in the world. He has more than 50 Top 40 hits, including seven consecutive No. 1 US albums.
His single ‘Candle in the Wind 1997’ sold over 33 million copies worldwide and is the best-selling single in the history of both the UK and US singles charts. On the night he touchingly dedicated Candle in the Wind to those recently shot dead in Orlando.
Having given over 4,000 performances in a career spanning more than fifty years, Elton said: “The simple truth is I want to spend more time with my family, and I am only too aware of just how precious the time ahead is.
“My sons are growing up so quickly; their early years are just flying by and I want to be there with them. So these concerts will give me the chance to thank the British audiences who have been so faithful to me over these many decades.
“We cannot get to everyone but I am going to try to get back to people who love music but get so few concerts”.
“When I was told that Longleat was interested, I leapt at the chance.“
Those lucky enough to see him at Longleat are unlikely to forget it. It was a wonderful crazy night performed by a true music legend.