On Sunday night, Camilla, The Duchess of Cornwall attended the Olivier Awards at the Royal Albert Hal. Here, she presented Sir Matthew Bourne, choreographer and director of a production of Swan Lake, with a lifetime achievement honour.
Established by the Society of West End Theatre, which is now the Society of London Theatre, in 1976, the Olivier Awards celebrate the world-class status of London theatre and are Britain’s most prestigious stage honours.
Camilla was joined by her son, Tom Parker-Bowles for the evening.
During the event, the Duchess joined Dame Darcey Bussell and Richard E Grant, who made tributes to Sir Matthew, on stage to present the artist with the Special Award. Considered one of the UK’s most successful living choreographer and director, Sir Matthew Bourne has created and directed dance for musicals, theatre and film for 30 years, receiving numerous international accolades.
Previous holders of the Special Award have included Laurence Olivier, who agreed to give his name to the awards in 1984, Harold Pinter, Dame Judi Dench, Dame Maggie Smith and Sir Kenneth Branagh.
Danny Dyer, who attended the event to present an award joked: “Shout out to the Duchess (of Cornwall) up there. No Charlie tonight I see. I’ll pop up and see you later.”
Of course, the Royals are actually very distant relations of Mr Dyer; while taking part in ‘Who Do You Think You Are’, it was revealed the actor was a direct descendant of Edward III!
After the ceremony, Camilla met some of the winners, presenters, cast members and members of the production team. Patsy Ferran, who won the best actress award for her role in Summer And Smoke, a play by Tennessee Williams, said the Duchess “asked if it was a big surprise that I won an award, and I said it was a massive, huge surprise. I wasn’t expecting it at all.”
“She said she thought I did very well with dealing with my surprise. I’ve never done that, I’ve never met royalty before. So it’s quite a night to remember isn’t it?”
The Duchess of Cornwall also congratulated comedian Kyle Soller, who won best actor for his role in The Inheritance, winner four awards at the ceremony, and Sharon D Clarke and Kobna Holdbrook-Smith, who won the best actor and actress in a musical respectively.