Covid: Stars perform musical song in latest vaccine pushon July 3, 2021 at 9:04 am

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Film, TV and stage actors appear in a campaign video urging people to get their Covid jab.

Asa Butterfield, Sandra Marvin and Russell Tovey

image copyrightDHSC

Celebrities including actors and pop stars are fronting a video campaign urging people to get their Covid jab.

It sees West End and Emmerdale actress Sandra Marvin and Nicola Roberts, of Girls Aloud, perform The Rhythm Of Life, from 1966 musical Sweet Charity.

They are joined by actors Sir Derek Jacobi, Sex Education’s Asa Butterfield and comedian David Walliams.

A tap-dancing Jim Broadbent concludes the song, saying “just get a vaccination”.

The short film, directed by Josie Rourke, is being released ahead of the NHS’s 73rd birthday – with sites across England lit up in blue on Saturday to pay tribute to the work of NHS staff during the pandemic.

It begins with Broadbent entering an empty theatre before being treated to a star-studded performance of The Rhythm Of Life – later joining in, tap-dancing in a pair of glittery blue shoes.

David Walliams sits among dancers in a still from the film to promte the Covid jab

image copyrightDHSC

Don Warrington, Russell Tovey and Colin Salmon also feature in the ensemble song, alongside a chorus line of West End dancers dressed in NHS blue.

Ahead of the launch, Walliams said the NHS had done an “absolutely fantastic job” in rolling out the vaccine; adding: “As we do in the film, I want to implore everyone to get their vaccine when called so we can get back to the all-singing, all-dancing, rhythm of life that we love.”

Broadbent added: “The film gave us the chance to show our appreciation and celebration for the vaccine rollout in the best way we know how.

“Vaccines are helping us get back to everything we love and every industry – including the arts – couldn’t be more grateful to each and every person for getting their vaccine.”

Health Secretary Sajid Javid said the vaccine was “the best way to help protect yourself and your loved ones” and urged people not to delay in booking their jab when they were invited to do so.

The new film is the latest in a string of star-studded campaign videos aimed at encouraging people to accept a Covid vaccine when they are invited.

In February, celebrities including comedian Romesh Ranganathan appeared in a film aimed at dispelling misinformation about the vaccine among some ethnic minority communities.

The government aims to have offered a first dose to all adults by 19 July – the date when the final stage of lockdown easing is scheduled to go ahead.It also hopes to have at least 65% of adults fully vaccinated at that point, which it hopes will enable more big summer events to go ahead safely.

So far, more than 45 million people – 85.5% of the UK adult population – have had a first dose of a Covid vaccine.

More than 33 million have received both doses – around 63% of adults – according to the government’s coronavirus dashboard.

On Saturday evening, the Wembley arch, the Liver building in Liverpool, and Salisbury Cathedral will be among more than 70 sites across England that will be lit up to mark the 73rd anniversary of the NHS on Monday.

The nationwide tribute is also intended to thank NHS staff for for their work during the pandemic.

Vaccination centres, football stadiums, town halls, churches, hospitals and bridges will also be lit up blue.

It comes as events are held across the country to pay tribute to health workers who have lost their lives to Covid-19.

A small number of NHS staff from north-west England will attend a memorial service at the London Blossom Garden on Saturday in memory of colleagues who died while caring for patients during the pandemic.

The garden, at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in Stratford, east London, was planted as a living memorial to those who lost their lives and pays tribute to key workers.

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