If we needed more proof that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s nuptials are going to be the modern-day royal wedding of our dreams, this is it. HELLO! has learnt there’s going to be a royal wedding charity single which will be available to download in the days leading up the big day. We bet Simon Cowell wished he’d thought of this one!
It all started in March when auditions were held up and down the country to find the ultimate singing group to perform the charity single. They didn’t just want amazing singers, it was about the story behind the performer. Everyone in the 25-person supergroup has mental health issues or has overcome obstacles with their health. The name? Gosp-Ability.
HELLO! spoke to Sue Cressman who made it into the choir. The 58-year-old, who is the co-owner of the hugely popular Nailcote Hall Hotel in Warwickshire, was extremely shocked to make it through to the final 25, and even compared the audition process as “like being on the X Factor”.
Introducing Gosp-Ability who are all very exciting about their next venture
“I sang Doris Day’s Secret Love from Calamity Jane. We could only sing for 30 seconds, but I’ve always loved that song,” Sue told us. “I hadn’t sang for 40 years!”
Sue continued: “As we left, I had no idea if I got the part or not. I had the phone call from the producers telling me I was one of the chosen 25. I couldn’t believe it - it was the day after April Fool’s Day, and if I’d have picked up the phone the day before, I wouldn’t have believed them.”
Sue has overcome major health issues in her time: a broken neck, breast cancer (twice), skin cancer, a car accident and to this day, still has issues with her health and mobility. Since her various diagnoses, Sue has been a keen charity ambassador and has raised thousands and thousands of pounds for breast cancer patients within her local community.
Sue Cressman, a member of Gosp-Ability who has overcome major health concerns
The song, aptly called The Big Love Song, has been specifically penned for Harry and Meghan, and has been considered a “wedding gift” to the happy couple. Created by Sandra Godley, an award-winning gospel singer, the song was produced in Nashville, and Sue is very excited about singing it in front of well wishers at The Windsor Guildhall (where Prince Charles and Camilla got married) on 17 May, just days before the royal couple say ‘I do’.
Sandra Godley has previously said: “The idea for the choir is inspired by Prince Harry opening up and talking about the importance of mental health, drawing on his own experiences of bereavement as part of the Heads Together campaign.
“This is another way of helping people who have been through tough times, it brings them together and gives them something wonderful to focus their energy on."
Sandra Godley was inspired by Prince Harry's charity work
It’s not yet known whether the engaged couple will be there to listen to the song being performed, but it’s believed they know about the gift and are touched.
Sue is thrilled about the upcoming nuptials, telling us: “I’m very excited about the wedding of Harry and Meghan. It’s the joining of the UK and America, I’m married to a dual citizen myself, and I believe they’ll be truly happy.”
The happy couple looking smitten with one another
Gosp-Ability has already appeared on BBC One’s The One Show, which will be following the choir up until they perform at Windsor, singing the song Sandra has written.
Sandra told The Voice: “We’ll be singing in front of the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, who, incidentally, was my former boss when I worked as Head of Events at Coventry Cathedral.
“There’s another special touch to all this because of course, Justin will be marrying the happy couple.”
Producer and The One Show Reporter, Trish Adudu has been following the story of the choir and is producing a BBC documentary called The Royal Wedding Singalong. The show will be aired on BBC News Channel at 9.30pm on Friday 11 May and again at 10.30am on Sunday 13 May.
This 30 minute documentary will be aired on the BBC and will tell the amazing story of Gosp-Ability. Trish told HELLO!: “So many inspirational stories singing together in one beautiful choir and Sue is a great example of the grit and determination of many of these stories behind the mic.”
‘The Big Love Song’ will be available to download on iTunes from 17 May. Proceeds will be distributed to various mental health charities.