Published: 01/07/2019 By Allan Fuller
The Royal Albert Hall was opened by Queen Victoria in 1871. It is today the world busiest venue, and over the years It has hosted many of the world’s most famous people, from Einstein, to Eric Clapton, who has performed their over 200 times, in fact he refers to it as like performing in his one front room!
A large mural by Peter Blake, titled Appearing at the Royal Albert Hall, is displayed in the Hall's Café Bar. Unveiled in April 2014, it shows more than 400 famous figures who have appeared on the stage.
In 1955, English film director Alfred Hitchcock filmed the climax of The Man Who Knew Too Much at the Hall. The 15-minute sequence featured James Stewart, Doris Day and composer Bernard Herrmann, and was filmed partly in the Queen's Box. Hitchcock was a long-time patron of the Hall and had already set the finale of his 1927 film, The Ring at the venue, as well as his initial version of The Man Who Knew Too Much, starring Leslie Banks, Edna Best and Peter Lorre.
Other notable films shot at the Hall include Major Barbara, Love Story, The Seventh Veil, The Ipcress File, A Touch of Class, Shine and Spice World.
In the song "A Day in the Life" by the Beatles, the Albert Hall is mentioned. The verse goes as follows:
I read the news today, oh boy
four thousand holes in Blackburn, Lancashire
and though the holes were rather small
they had to count them all
now they know how many holes it takes to fill the Albert Hall
I'd love to turn you on.
The song "Session Man" by The Kinks references the Hall:
He never will forget at all
The day he played at Albert Hall.
[Photo source: The Royal Albert Hall]