Kate Middleton has overcome nerves to reveal her hidden musical talent in a televised performance from Westminster Abbey.
The Duchess of Cambridge made a surprise appearance for the Christmas Eve carol concert, playing piano while pop star Tom Walker sang his hit For Those Who Can't Be Here.
The event was televised by ITV because of the royals' feud with the BBC over its recent documentary about Princes William and Harry.
Kate's flawless performance was perhaps all the more satisfying because her childhood piano teacher had previously said: "I don't think she was ever going to be a concert pianist."
She wore a red Catherine Walker coat and sapphire diamond fringed earrings, on loan from the Queen.
The concert was not live, but was filmed earlier this month.
A royal source told People music was "very important" to Kate during Britain's Covid lockdowns, and she "recognises the powerful way in which music brings people together" during tough times.
"For these reasons, she was keen to be part of Tom's performance in this way."
Speaking after the recording, Walker said Kate "completely nailed" her performance.
"It was truly an honour playing alongside The Duchess for Royal Carols: Together at Christmas," the singer said.
"Without doubt, it was a once in a lifetime experience. So I think we were both really nervous that it wasn't going to go quite to plan and one of us would let down the other person or whatever, but she was absolutely fabulous – she smashed it.
"I thought she absolutely smashed the performance; it's not easy to just jump behind a piano with a bunch of musicians you've never played with before and record live takes to camera, but she completely nailed it.
"She's such a lovely, kind and warm-hearted person and she took the time to thank everyone personally for the opportunity to play together."
The performance was kept under wraps until the Duchess took to social media several hours beforehand.
Posting early on Christmas Eve UK time on the Duke and Duchess's Instagram account, a short video showed Kate sitting at the piano in Westminster Abbey.
'Festive glance' between Kate and Wills
The programme raised eyebrows before airing after ITV shared an image from the show in which the Duke and Duchess looking adoringly at one another from the pews. The broadcaster called it a "festive glance" between the pair.
Puzzled readers were baffled as to the definition of a "festive glance".
"How is a glance festive? Does it has tinsel or lights, ribbons or balloons?" asked one confused person in response to ITV's post.
ITV is not the traditional network for royal-endorsed fare. That honour is usually reserved for public broadcaster the BBC.
But the Beeb is in the bad books with Buckingham Palace after it broadcast a controversial documentary last month focusing on the younger royals.
The doco aired claims that courtiers leaked negative stories about Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, to the press and that there were rivalries between the Sussexes and Cambridges.
After the programme was shown, a rare joint statement was issued by Buckingham Palace, Kensington Palace and Clarence House, which essentially represents the Queen, Prince Charles as well as Kate and Wills.
The statement said the "claims from unnamed sources" were "overblown and unfounded".
The Royal Christmas charity concert was then promptly handed by the Cambridges to ITV, much to that network's delight.
"This is a real coup for ITV. It is a brand new format — the royals have never hosted a televised TV concert before. And to have the Duchess leading on it is a big deal," a source told The Sun.
"Naturally most royal programming goes automatically to the BBC as the national broadcaster. Now it looks like they will work more with ITV in the future."