Danish Royal Family commemorates the first anniversary of Prince Henrik’s death

On 20 February, Queen Margrethe organised a concert in the Chapel of Fredensborg Palace to commemorate the first anniversary of Prince Henrik’s death. She was joined by Crown Prince Frederik, Crown Princess Mary, Prince Joachim, and Princess Marie. Other guests included members of the Court and friends of Prince Henrik. Surprisingly, Princess Benedikte, Countess Alexandra of Frederiksborg and other members of Prince Henrik’s family did not attend this concert.

The Queen speaks before the concert. (Photo: Keld Navntoft, Kongehuset 2019)

Before the show, Queen Margrethe said a few words to pay tribute to her late husband. The Royal Danish Academy of Music performed several pieces – including La Bohéme and La Cenerentola – during the concert with the aim to reflect on Prince Henrik’s life-long interests in music and poems. There was a very emotional moment when a poem written by Prince Henrik for Queen Margrethe called ‘Côte à Côte‘ (‘Side by Side’) was read.

(Photo: Keld Navntoft, Kongehuset 2019)

After the concert, Queen Margrethe hosted a dinner for the guests in Fredensborg Palace. The menu was made of meals that were very well-liked by Prince Henrik such as mushrooms quiche or Vietnamese grilled chicken skewer. Prince Henrik spent several years of his childhood in Vietnam, so the meal was no doubt chosen to pay tribute to Prince Henrik’s life. It is unclear if the concert is to become an annual tradition.

(Photo: Keld Navntoft, Kongehuset 2019)

Prince Henrik and Queen Margrethe lived together for more than fifty years, having married on 10 June 1967. They had two children and eight grandchildren. Prince Henrik died on 13 February 2018 at Fredensborg Palace after several weeks of illness. The funeral took place on 20 February 2018.

In accordance with his last wishes, he was not buried in Roskilde but instead his ashes were split, with one half being buried in Fredensborg Palace’s garden and the other half being thrown at sea. Prince Henrik considered Fredensborg Palace his home, and he had decided last year to leave the Rigshospitalet to spend his last days in the palace with his family.