A Royal Refresher on Who's Who at King Charles III's Coronation

More than 2,200 guests have been invited to King Charles III's coronation. Get to know a few of the key attendees who will be at Westminster Abbey May 6.

By Elyse Dupre May 05, 2023 10:00 AMTags
Watch: King Charles III's Coronation: EVERYTHING We Know!

Lords and ladies, King Charles III's coronation day is almost here.

While His Majesty ascended the throne immediately after his mother Queen Elizabeth II died in September, the ceremony marking the formal investiture of his powers as monarch will be held May 6 at Westminster Abbey in London.

And, according to Buckingham Palace, more than 2,200 guests have scored a coveted invite to the big event, including heads of state, faith representatives, military members, patronage leaders, friends and family.

However, not all royal family members will be there. Prince Harry's wife Meghan Markle is spending the day celebrating their son Prince Archie's fourth birthday with daughter Princess Lilibet, 23 months, at home in California. In addition, Sarah Ferguson—who was previously married to Prince Andrew—won't be in attendance because, as she told Good Morning Britain, "it's a state occasion and, being divorced, I don't think you can have it both ways."

All About King Charles III's Reign

For a royal review on who will be at the coronation, keep scrolling.

King Charles III

Of course, the guest of honor will be in attendance as the 40th sovereign to be crowned at Westminster Abbey. Coronations have been held at the church for more than 900 years, with the first taking place in 1066 for William the Conqueror and the last being held in 1953 for Queen Elizabeth II

As in years past, the nearly five-pound St. Edward's Crown—which features a gold frame, purple velvet cap, rubies, amethysts, sapphires, garnet, topazes and tourmalines—will be used for the occasion.

And the ceremony is just one part of coronation weekend. There will also be processions before and after the event as well as a balcony appearance at Buckingham Palace. In addition, there will be a broadcasted coronation concert and a community lunch on May 7 as well as a day dedicated to volunteering at local organizations called The Big Help Out on May 8.

Queen Consort Camilla

Charles won't be the only one scoring new headgear. His wife Queen Consort Camillawho he wed in 2005—will have the Queen Mary's Crown placed upon her head. According to the Royal Collection Trust, the silver-frame crown has a gold lining, purple velvet cap and 2,200 diamonds.

Prince William & Prince Harry

Charles' eldest son William—now first in line to the throne—will have a big job during the coronation. In addition to presenting the king with the Stole and Robe Royal, the Prince of Wales will recite the Homage of Royal Blood.

Harry's appearance alongside his brother will also draw attention as it comes four months after he detailed his sometimes-contentious relationship with his dad and William in both his memoir Spare and his and Meghan Markle's docuseries Harry & Meghan.

While there have been headlines about a royal rift between Harry, William and Charles for years, the Duke of Sussex has expressed his hope for healing one day. 

"There's a lot that I can forgive," he told ABC News' Michael Strahan in January. "But there needs to be conversations in order for reconciliation, and part of that has to be accountability."

Prince George

William and Kate Middleton's 9-year-old son Prince George also has an important role—serving as one of the eight Pages of Honor for Charles and Camilla. In addition to attending to Their Majesties during the ceremony, the Pages will take part in the procession at Westminster Abbey.

Charles' other Pages of Honor include Lord Oliver Cholmondeley (son of David Cholmondeley, 7th Marquess of Cholmondeley and Sarah Rose Cholmondeley, Marchioness of Cholmondeley); Master Nicholas Barclay (grandson of Charles' second cousin Sarah Troughton) and Master Ralph Tollemache (son of the king's godson, Edward Tollemache).

As for Camilla's Pages, they include her grandsons Master Gus and Master Louis Lopes and Master Freddy Parker Bowles as well as her great-nephew Master Arthur Elliot.

Princess Anne

"I have a role as Colonel of the Blues and Royals in the Household Cavalry regiment as Gold-Stick," Charles' sister recently told CBC News. "Gold-Stick was the original close protection officer. So that is a role that I was asked if I'd like to do for this coronation. So, I said yes. Not least of all, it solves my dress problem."

Official roles have not been announced for Charles' brother Prince Edward, the newly appointed Duke of Edinburgh, and Prince Andrew, who stepped back from his royal duties in 2019 over his former association with late convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.

Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby

If the Archbishop of Canterbury's name sounds familiar, that's because he's been involved in many of the royal family's ceremonies, including Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip's funerals, Harry and Meghan's wedding and many of the royal children's christenings. Naturally, he was tapped to help with the coronation service.

Global Leader Guests

First Lady Dr. Jill Biden will attend the coronation on behalf of the United States. According to The White House, President Joe Biden congratulated Charles on the coronation in April and expressed his desire to meet with him in the U.K. in the future. Notably, a U.S. president has never attended a British monarch's coronation.

The First Lady won't be the only leader at the coronation. In fact, there will be representatives from 203 countries, including Prime Minister of Canada Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Australia Anthony Albanese and President of the Philippines Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr.

Coronation Concert Performers

If you're curious about who will be performing during The Coronation Concert, here's the tea. The BBC previously announced that the star-studded lineup will include singers Lionel Richie, Katy Perry, Nicole Scherzinger and Freya Ridings; tenor Andrea Bocelli; bass-baritone Sir Bryn Terfel; classical composer and pianist Alexis Ffrench and pop group Take That.

And they won't be the only ones to take the stage May 7. Singers Paloma FaithTiwa Savage and Olly Murs; musician Steve Winwood; pianist Lang Lang; DJ Pete Tong Ibiza Classics featuring Vula and JERUB and The Piano's Lucy will as well. In addition, actress Sonam Kapoor will give a spoken word performance.

But that's not all. The BBC also noted the The Royal Ballet, The Royal Opera, the Royal Shakespeare Company, The Royal College of Music and The Royal College of Art will join forces for a special performance with Ncuti Gatwa and Mei Mac. And the big names don't end there, with Tom Cruise, Joan CollinsWinnie the PoohTom Jones, Bear Grylls and Oti Mabuse making cameos as well.

Plus, there will be performances by choirs, orchestras, dancers, percussionists and more.

Ceremony Musicians

According to the royal family's website, the king has "personally commissioned the new music and shaped and selected the musical" program for the coronation service, which will include a slew of choirs, organists, harpists and trumpeters. The site notes that there have been six orchestral commissions, five choral commissions and one organ commission composed for the event.

Among the composers is The Phantom of the Opera scribe Andrew Lloyd Webber, who wrote the Coronation Anthem. Other composers include Patrick Doyle, Iain Farrington, Sarah Class, Nigel Hess, Paul Mealor, Tarik O'Regan, Roxanna Panufnik, Shirley J. Thompson, Judith Weir, Roderick Williams, and Debbie Wiseman. In addition, there will be several soloists, choirs, organists, harpists, trumpeters and more.

Prime Ministers & Procession Participants

Before the ceremony begins, Charles and Camilla will travel from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Abbey in the horse-drawn Diamond Jubilee State Coach and will be accompanied by the Household Cavalry.

After they arrive, the Palace states, there will be a procession into Westminster Abbey featuring faith leaders and representatives. Flags from each of Charles' realms will also be carried by national representatives, the Palace continues, who will be joined by Governors General and Prime Ministers. U.K. Prime Minster Rishi Sunak and his wife Akshata Murty, for instance, will be joined by Cadet Warrant Officer Elliott Tyson-Lee, who will carry the flag for the U.K.

Later, there will be a procession of the king and queen as well as a procession of their regalia to the altar, which will feature several earls, dukes, dames, lords, baronesses and military figures. And after the ceremony, there will be one more procession back to Buckingham Palace. For this one, the Palace states, the newly crowned king and queen will travel in the Gold State Coach and will be joined by members of the Armed Forces.

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