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Condoleezza Rice plays piano for Queen Elizabeth II
Updated: 2008-12-02 08:22

LONDON  – Top US diplomat Condoleezza Rice took time out from her busy diplomatic schedule Monday to play a little piano -- in the form of a recital at Buckingham Palace for Queen Elizabeth II, royal officials said.

Britain's Queen Elizabeth II, left, shakes hands with Condoleezza Rice, the US Secretary of State, as Louise Miliband, right, the wife of the British Foreign Secretary David Miliband, reacts, prior to a private musical concert with members of the London Symphony Orchestra, at Buckingham Palace in London, England, Monday, December 1, 2008. [Agencies] 

The US secretary of state, in London for talks with Prime Minister Gordon Brown, was accompanied in her performance of Brahms by Foreign Secretary David Miliband's wife Louise, and three members of the London Symphony Orchestra.

Rice is an accomplished pianist who started playing when she was a child.

A palace spokeswoman said that Rice "expressed a wish to play at Buckingham Palace and the queen offered her to play in the music room."

The queen listened to part of the private performance and afterwards, presented Rice with a recording of the recital as a present.