Exit Prince Charles, stage left
Royal Ballet decides there's nothing like a Dame - Dame Beryl Grey is to pip the Prince to the post of patron, as other bodies fear a 'royal' prefix makes them look elitist and out of touch. By James Morrison for The Independent
The Royal Ballet, one of the most enduring bastions of royal patronage, is preparing to drop its regal figurehead for the first time since its foundation.
After months of consultation, the 44-year-old company is understood to be about to replace Princess Margaret, the inaugural president who died last February, with a mere civilian. In a move that comes as a snub to the Prince of Wales, many people's favoured candidate, the ballet is expected to appoint Dame Beryl Grey, 75, one of Britain's premier ballerinas and the company's vice-chairman.
The decision will open up a debate about whether it is still in the interests of charitable bodies to have members of the Royal Family as patrons.
One leading charity privately told The Independent on Sunday last week that having Prince Charles as patron had become a liability in the wake of the collapse of the Paul Burrell trial. It said that media coverage had shown the prince as pampered and profligate. click for more
Here is the link to our coverage of Dame Beryl Grey's Gala to celebrate her 75th Birthday: http://forum.criticaldance.com/ubb/ultimatebb.php?ubb=get_topic;f=17;t=000144
<small>[ 12-01-2002, 17:27: Message edited by: Stuart Sweeney ]</small>