Justin Trudeau sings Queen in London two days before royal funeral

Justin Trudeau stands outside Number 10 Downing Street

Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau was recorded singing a rendition of Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody” just days before Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral. 

Trudeau was seen in the video singing the hit song in the lobby of the Corinthia London hotel on Saturday (17 September) night. The politician stood alongside a piano played by renowned Quebec musician Gregory Charles, who was part of the Canadian delegation to the late British monarch’s funeral.

Trudeau’s office confirmed the video in a statement to Global News and said the prime minister joined a “small gathering with members of the Canadian delegation”, who came together to “pay tribute to the life and service of Her Majesty”. 

“Gregory Charles, a renowned musician from Quebec and Order of Canada recipient, played piano in the hotel lobby which resulted in some members of the delegation including the prime minister joining,” the spokesperson said. 

The spokesperson added Justin Trudeau has “taken part in various activities” over the past 10 days to “pay his respects” for Queen Elizabeth II.

Justin Trudeau stands outside Number 10 Downing Street

A spokesperson for Justin Trudeau said the Canadian prime minister has “taken part in various activities” to “pay his respects” to Queen Elizabeth II. (Getty)

Charles told Canada’s Globe and Mail newspaper that “everyone sang with [him] for two hours” in the hotel lobby. He added the proceedings reminded him of Caribbean funerals which blend sombre, respectful moments with those joyfully celebrating life. 

“That was the feeling, that was a lot of fun,” Charles said.

Charles told the Toronto Star he hadn’t seen the video but confirmed he spent a “few splendid minutes with the PM late on Saturday”. 

“And there was a piano in the lobby and I did play a few UK tunes as a spontaneous homage,” he added. 

A clip of the moment sparked intense debate on social media with some people questioning if Trudeau’s actions were appropriate.

One person on Twitter claimed Trudeau’s actions were “inappropriate” as they came before the state funeral on Monday (19 September). 

Another questioned how the Canadian prime minister could “qualify this as paying tribute to the life and service of Her Majesty”.

Justin Trudeau described Queen Elizabeth II as a “constant presence” in the lives of Canadians and said the monarch “saw this country from coast to coast to coast”. 

“Her Majesty vowed to devote her life to the service of the Commonwealth and its people,” Trudeau said. “On behalf of all Canadians, I thank Queen Elizabeth II for honouring this vow and for a lifetime of service.”

Justin Trudeau and his wife arrive at Queen Elizabeth II's state funeral

Prime minister of Canada Justin Trudeau and his wife Sophie attend the state funeral of Queen Elizabeth II on 19 September 2022 in London, England. (Getty)

Trudeau travelled to the UK alongside a large delegation that included former prime ministers, recipients of the Order of Canada and indigenous leaders to attend the state funeral. 

The Canadian prime minister recalled in an interview with the BBC how he was seven-years-old when he first met Queen Elizabeth II. 

He described how they first met when his father, Pierre Elliott Trudeau, was prime minister and that he had to “rush back from school to meet her”. Trudeau remembered how he struggled to keep his shoes clean before the event.

“Of course I got them all muddy, so I remember just before running home having to go into the school washroom with a buddy of mine, cleaning off my shoes so I could have clean shoes for meeting the Queen,” he said.

He continued: “I just remember looking up at her back then and having her being just lovely and thoughtful and gracious with me even at that point.”