Entertainment & Arts

Condoleezza Rice plays with Aretha Franklin for charity

Condoleezza Rice and Aretha Franklin
The pair played in a charity concert in Philadelphia

Former US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice joined veteran singer Aretha Franklin on stage to perform at a charitable gig on Tuesday.

Rice, who is a classically trained pianist, accompanied the soul legend during two of her hit songs at Philadelphia's Mann Music Center.

She also played a selection of Mozart musical pieces.

The concert was held to raise money for urban children and awareness for music and the arts.

Rice, the Republican former aide to President George W Bush and Franklin - a committed Democrat who sang at President Barack Obama's inauguration - met at a White House function.

Speaking to The Associated Press, Rice said: "We were just talking and chatting and she said 'You play, don't you?'

"And I said, 'Yes.' And she said we should do something together."

Franklin said she had been surprised at how talented Rice was.

"All I had seen of Dr Rice was in a political atmosphere. It just seemed foreign that she would be a classical pianist.

"She really does play, she's formidable."

Rice played piano while Franklin sang I Say A Little Prayer and My Country 'Tis of Thee.

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