Take That stars Gary Barlow and Robbie Williams reunite to support heroes charity
Monday 13 September 2010
Newly-reunited Take That stars Gary Barlow and Robbie Williams performed together live for the first time in 15 years.
In a sign that their dark years were behind them, Williams and Barlow embraced on stage in front of fans.
The duo sang to 60,000 people, including Prince Harry, at Twickenham Stadium in south west London last night in aid of the Help For Heroes charity which supports members of the armed forces.
They sang their new single Shame which was written about their relationship.
Introducing Barlow to the stage, Williams said: "Have I got a treat for you, this is one of the most amazing moments in my professional career so far.
"It has been 15 years in the making.
"My wife calls him my boyfriend, I call him my captain, you call him Gary Barlow."
The crowd cheered as the Take That frontman entered the stage and Williams bowed down to him.
The pair, who were both wearing black, hugged during the chorus.
Williams, who was headlining the concert, opened with an energetic performance of Let Me Entertain You.
The set of five songs also included Feel, Angels and Come Undone which had a special verse of Swing Low Sweet Chariot included to pay homage to the home of English rugby.
Earlier this year Williams ended months of speculation by announcing he was reuniting with his former bandmates for a new album.
The pair have not performed together live since Williams quit Take That, although they shared a stage for the finale of the Children In Need concert at the Royal Albert Hall last year.
Sir Tom Jones, who also performed at the charity gig, welcomed the reunion.
He said: "I think it is a great idea.
"Robbie is a great guy, Gary Barlow is a great guy, they are a part of a great group and the fans are dying to see them back together. Thumbs up for them."
Former Spice Girl Emma Bunton added: "They love the energy they bring when they go on stage together and they love being together.
"They have been very honest about how they didn't get on and they have written this song about how they have got back together and they are friends again.
"I am so glad us girls got a chance to do it, I'm really looking forward to Take That."
Take That disbanded in 1996 but reunited without Williams in 2005 to huge success, including three number one singles. The group's new album will be their first with the full line-up since 1995 release Nobody Else.
This year marks the 20th anniversary of the band's formation. By 1993 they were huge and enjoyed a string of hits including Pray and Relight My Fire.
However Williams, the baby of the group, was beginning to pull in a different direction and famously enjoyed a "lost weekend" with Oasis at the Glastonbury festival in 1995.
After a wobbly start he had his own huge solo career with chart-topping singles such as No Regrets, Millennium and Rock DJ.
But the reunion of his former Take That colleagues in 2005 for live dates began to overshadow his success.
Despite Williams ridiculing Barlow during his early solo shows, the pair began to bury the hatchet in recent years and their friendship was renewed.
Williams, who married his girlfriend Ayda Field in California last month, said: "I am honoured to be a part of this show and to help draw attention to the amazing job done by our servicemen and women throughout the world. Their dedication to our country is phenomenal and we are all so proud of them."
The concert also featured performances by Enrique Iglesias, James Blunt, Alexandra Burke, Pixie Lott, Plan B and The Saturdays.
Comedians including John Bishop, Jack Dee and Peter Kay also signed up to host the event which featured a guest appearance by Bruce Forsyth.
Free tickets were given to injured members of the armed forces and their carers.
Bryn Parry, of Help for Heroes, said the charity allowed ordinary people to support the armed forces.
He said: "Music and humour can reach and lift those in the darkest of places, making life worth living and helping in recovery.
"Our boys and girls, both those operating in the remote patrol bases and those recovering from life-changing injuries, will hear this concert and know that they are in the forefront of our minds.
"They are not forgotten, wherever they are."
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