Liza Minnelli sings at Silver Clef Awards

Liza Minnelli at Silver Clef Awards in London

Liza Minnelli at Silver Clef Awards in London

Showbiz legend Liza Minnelli burst into song during her acceptance speech at the Nordoff Robbins O2 Silver Clef Awards at the London Hilton hotel this afternoon (01.07.11).

Liza Minnelli burst into song during her acceptance speech at the Silver Clef Awards this afternoon (01.07.11).

The singer-and-actress was honoured with the Icon prize at the annual ceremony which was held at the London Hilton hotel and after praising the organisers Nordoff Robbins - a charity which aims to provide therapy to vulnerable people through music in places such as schools, day centres and hospitals - she then launched into an impromptu song.

Upon receiving the accolade from TV presenter Graham Norton, she said: "Thank you, I believe in this project more than anything I've heard in the last 20 years because I do believe in the healing power of music and even lyrics. Sometimes a lyric can completely change your mind."

Recalling a recent struggle with her voice, she added: "I had lost all faith and I couldn't sing and I went up to my voice coach and I said, 'I'm in trouble, I cannot stay in key, I can't stay in the tune, in the key, I'm flating, I'm sharping, I can't get away from it, I can't sing!' And she went to the piano and she taught me an exercise, and it was simply this, when you're feeling really crumby, (starts singing) 'Change your life, and the symptoms change, destroy the beef, and the symptoms disappear, yes they do,' Thank you."

Before she went on stage to collect the honour, Liza revealed she had prepared for her appearance by listening to Brazilian music.

She said: "I was feeling nervous today so I put on some Brazilian music and now I feel better."

Other winners at the ceremony, included Tinie Tempah, who received the Best Newcomer prize, Biffy Clyro, who were named Best British Band, Sir Paul McCartney, who was voted Best Live Act by the public, and Annie Lennox, who took home the prestigious 02 Silver Clef Award.

Although she was nervous about receiving the statuette, the former Eurythmics singer was excited about spending the afternoon with Liza.

She said: "I have to stay calm when I come to these things, because I'm really a quiet person, and I'm not really used to this despite appearances.

When told the 65-year-old 'Cabaret' legend was also present, Annie told BANG Showbiz: "Is she coming today? Oh very nice, everybody would like the idea of spending the day with Liza Minnelli, how interesting."

Nordoff Robbins O2 Silver Clef Awards full list of winners:

O2 Silver Clef Award - Annie Lennox

Investec Icon Award - Liza Minnelli

TAG: Design & Interactive Newcomer Award - Tinie Tempah

PPL Classical Award - Alfie Boe

Hard Rock Ambassadors of Rock Award - Arcade Fire

Royal Albert Hall Best British Band Award - Biffy Clyro

Raymond Weil International Award - Swedish House Mafia

Sony Ericsson Lifetime Achievement Award - Status Quo

American Express Digital Innovation Award - McFly

Best Live Act - Sir Paul McCartney


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