Trudeau spotted singing Bohemian Rhapsody days before Queen's funeral

·2 min read
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau signs a book of condolence to Queen Elizabeth next to his wife, Sophie Grégoire Trudeau, at Lancaster House in London on Saturday. The Queen's funeral took place on Monday. (David Parry/The Associated Press - image credit)
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau signs a book of condolence to Queen Elizabeth next to his wife, Sophie Grégoire Trudeau, at Lancaster House in London on Saturday. The Queen's funeral took place on Monday. (David Parry/The Associated Press - image credit)

A video of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau singing Bohemian Rhapsody just days before Queen Elizabeth's funeral kicked off a debate on social media, with some criticizing Trudeau for a lack of decorum.

In a video circulating on social media, Trudeau is seen standing over a piano singing "easy come, easy go, little high little low. Any way the wind blows," from the hit song by U.K. rock band Queen.

The serenading occurred on Saturday night in the lobby of a hotel, according to a statement from Trudeau's office.

WATCH | Trudeau sings Bohemian Rhapsody days before Queen's funeral:

Trudeau was joined by other members of the Canadian delegation, including musician and Order of Canada member Gregory Charles, who played on the lobby's piano.

"Charles, a renowned musician from Quebec and Order of Canada recipient, played piano in the hotel lobby which resulted in some members of the delegation including the prime minister joining," the statement said.

But some on social media took issue with Trudeau jovially singing while in the U.K. to represent Canada at the Queen's funeral, which was held Monday.

"He's there as a representative of Canada to mourn the death of our Head of State and this is what he decides to do? Sorry, this is absolutely irresponsible," said one Twitter user with the account name Jeff Waldman.

Others compared the situation to former British prime minister Boris Johnson's for holding a staff party on the eve of Prince Philip's funeral.

But others came to the prime minister's defence, arguing that the sing-along didn't take place during an official event.

"Singing at a piano on his down time isn't a problem," said Twitter user Ash Catherman.

NDP MP Charlie Angus tweeted that while he has some issues with the prime minister, he had no problem with Trudeau's singing – other than his song choice.

"I think he could have picked a better song [than] Bohemian Rhapsody," Angus wrote.

Carleton University political science professor Jonathan Malloy said there is some time for levity even during a period of mourning.

"The Prime Minister need not be in sackcloth and ashes for ten days to mourn the Queen," he wrote in an email to CBC.

"Funerals and wakes often have moments of camaraderie and jolliness, and this is no different. He is entitled to some light social time."

Trudeau was part of a delegation that included former prime ministers, governors general and Order of Canada recipients.

Roughly 2,000 people, including U.S. President Joe Biden and French President Emmanuel Macron, attended the service at London's Westminster Abbey.

Later, the Queen was buried alongside her husband Prince Philip, her parents and the ashes of her sister, Princess Margaret.