Darcey Bushell and celebs hit spotlight at Royal Albert Hall’s ballet gala

Strictly: Darcey Bussell says she'd return as guest judge

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Household names including Elizabeth Hurley and David Walliams, who was with mum Kathleen, dusted down their evening attire to attend. Also enjoying the show were Minnie Driver and Lulu, Abbie Quinnen and AJ Pritchard, Portia and Ore Oduba, and Annabel Croft with Emma Thynn, Marchioness of Bath. Dame Darcey, 52, arrived with her husband Angus Forbes.

The gala was a celebration of the UK’s leading acts and featured eight dance companies in an evening of “dance, unity and joy”.

It was one of the first such events since lockdown rules were relaxed.

Ahead of the show, a thrilled Dame Darcey said: “The day has come! One exciting performance seeing all eight companies on one stage dancing their hearts out at The Royal Albert Hall.

“I’m just a little excited!”

She added that the event was very much a moment for British dance to “highlight the significant part it plays in the UK art scene during what has been one of the most challenging periods in dance history”.

Prior to last night’s event, Dame Darcey revealed she would love to return to Strictly Come Dancing – but only as a guest judge. She left in 2019 and was replaced by Motsi Mabuse.

Appearing on the Jonathan Ross Show, Darcey said: “It was fabulous, I had seven years. I miss that – it’s like being part of a company again.”

• The gala will be streamed on June 18. Tickets £20 from www.roh.org.uk. Proceeds will go to dance companies.

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