Only One Copy is Made and Given to the Queen of England
Inspired by meeting Queen Elizabeth II in 1958, American composer and bandleader Duke Ellington composed a suite of music in her honor. This historic meeting took place following a performance of the Duke Ellington Orchestra at the Leeds Music Festival. As the reception progressed, Ellington was invited to speak with the royal delegation commenting to the Queen that she was so inspiring and something musical would result from this inspiration. The suite contains six movements, and was recorded in 1959. From this recording, just one pressing was made of the suite, and subsequently sent directly to Buckingham Palace and the Queen. Although the music was never commercially released during Duke's lifetime, it remained a unique composition and would be given life in the 1990's within a collection of other Ellington "Suite" compositions.
But the story of the "Queen's Suite" doesn't end here. In 2008 a young English jazz musician named Peter Edwards began his quest to transcribe the difficult compositions, put together an ensemble, and finally perform the "Queen's Suite" for the Queen. The project was so fascinating that a documentary filmmaker decided to take on the task of telling the story of this Inspirational meeting between one of America's most prolific composers and the Queen, and the music that resulted from this meeting.