It has been a long and winding eight-year road, but tonight Sir Paul McCartney will finally hear his own classical piece performed at the Royal Albert Hall - with a little help from Oxford choirboys.

The former Beatle will be in the audience at the famous venue to listen to the piece he wrote especially for Magdalen College choir - a group comprised of choirboys from Magdalen College School and Oxford University's Mag- dalen College.

The choirboys will join forces with Cambridge University's King's College Choir to sing the piece entitled Ecce Cor Meum (Latin for Behold My Heart) in front of Sir Paul.

His link with the choir started in 1998 when he and his first wife Linda heard the famous choir sing in the college chapel a few months before her death from cancer. Many believe the classical piece is a tribute to her.

Mr McCartney said: "The work the choir were doing was very interesting, and a lot of it I had never heard before.

"Writing a choral piece was a huge learning curve for me because my experience is basically doing harmonies with The Beatles."

Magdalen's musical director Bill Ives had crossed paths with Mr McCartney before - he sang The Frog Chorus on We All Stand Together.

The Beatles fan said: "I did not need to offer advice as such. He would contact me when he wanted to know about the range of voices in the choir, for example."

After making a good start, Mr McCartney had to take a year off writing the piece after Linda McCartney's death and he then had to slowly start to get back on track.

He said: "One of the ways I did that was to just sort of write my sadness out."

Mr Ives said: "It would be nice to think of it as an evolutionary step in English choral tradition."