Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, didn’t just want to wish everyone a Merry Christmas Eve this year – they wanted to draw attention to an important cause. On December 24, the royal couple posted a video of themselves and a group of A-list British actors – including Tom Hardy and Dame Judi Dench – and recited Clement Clarke Moore’s famous festive poem, “Twas the Night Before Christmas.” The video was created in partnership with the Actors’ Benevolent Fund to raise money and awareness for the charity amid the coronavirus pandemic.
“I wish you all a peaceful Christmas Eve,” the royal couple began with the caption that accompanied the video they had posted on their shared Instagram account. “The poem was recorded in support of the Actors’ Benevolent Fund, of which the Prince of Wales has been the patron for over 20 years. The charity supports actors and stage managers who are unable to work due to illness, injury or old age or who are unable to work due to financial difficulties, particularly during the coronavirus Pandemic. “
“This year has been particularly difficult for those in the industry. In April, the charity launched an emergency grant fund to support those in their careers who are struggling financially as a result of the pandemic,” the headline continues.
The royal couple began reading the famous poem – after the prince came into the picture – and was accompanied by actors Ncuti Gatwa, Tom Hardy, Dame Judi Dench, Dame Maggie Smith, Daniel Craig, Joanna Lumley and Dame Penelope Keith, the president the ABF is.
“Was that okay? Can I do it again?” Gatwa asked at the end. “I was terribly nervous! I was absolutely scared!” He laughed. Hardy, on the other hand, was full of confidence. “I’ll nail this,” he joked into the camera. And while the actors surely stole the show, many people went to the comment section to share their praise for Prince Charles’ reading voice.
According to The telegraphThe Prince of Wales came up with the idea for a group of actors to read the poem, following an approach taken by the Actors’ Benevolent Fund (ABF), and hear firsthand about the difficulties the theater and film industries were facing during the pandemic. Both he and the Duchess were filmed reading the poem from their home, Clarence House, as were the actors, who were all invited individually to come from the royal residence to record their reading.
Watch the full video above and click here to learn more about the Actors’ Benevolent Fund.
Image source: YouTube user The Royal Family