Revealed: Meghan secretly attended Michelle Obama’s talk at London’s Southbank Centre on Monday night – then met the former First Lady backstage for a ‘power meeting’
- Meghan, 37, attended Michelle Obama’s book talk in London on Monday
- Duchess of Sussex did not announce the visit to the Southbank Centre
- Mrs Obama met mother-to-be Meghan backstage after the event, palace said
- Riz Ahmed, actress Michaela Coel, Mayor of London Sadiq Khan all attended
The Duchess of Sussex attended Michelle Obama’s talk in London on Monday night, it has been revealed.
Mother-to-be Meghan, 37, was among the 2,700-strong audience who turned out to watch the former First Lady, 54, discuss her new autobiography with Nigerian novelist Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie at the Southbank Centre.
Following the event Meghan met Mrs Obama backstage, in what has been described as a ‘power meeting’. The visit was not announced in advance and Kensington Palace confirmed the duchess had attended in a ‘private’ capacity.
It is not known whether Meghan and Mrs Obama have met before but they have not been seen together publicly. However Prince Harry, 34, enjoys a famously close relationship with the former First Lady and her husband President Obama.
The Obamas also get on well with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, with Michelle releasing a statement after Prince Louis’ birth in April in which she said she hoped to meet the new arrival ‘soon’.
Mother-to-be Meghan, 37, was among the audience who watched the former First Lady in conversation with Nigerian novelist Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie in London on Monday night (seen here last month)
Mrs Obama was in London to speak about her autobiography Becoming at Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall. She met the royal backstage following the event
Harry interviewed President Obama when he guest edited Radio 4’s Today programme and has spoken at a summit for the Obama Foundation. Meanwhile Mrs Obama has been a firm supporter of Harry’s Invictus Games.
Mrs Obama was in London to speak about her autobiography Becoming at Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall.
The interview was part of the former First Lady’s book tour Becoming: An Evening with Michelle Obama.
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More than 40,000 people had reportedly tried to get tickets online when the event went on sale, but just 2,700 were lucky enough to attend the event.
Those in the audience included actor Riz Ahmed, actress Michaela Coel, Mayor of London Sadiq Khan and 300 school children from secondary schools across the UK.
Prince Harry, 34, enjoys a close relationship with Mrs Obama, pictured in 2016, who has been a firm supporter of his Invictus Games. He is also friends with former President Barack Obama
The Duchess of Sussex’s attendance was not reported at the time but reports emerged today and have since been confirmed by the palace.
Speaking at the event, Mrs Obama also recalled the controversy she caused when she touched the Queen on the back during another visit.
She said: ‘I touched her. After all those protocol lessons, I was human.’
Recalling another time she broke protocol, Mrs Obama said: ‘This is just how it feels to be at these high levels where people are talking protocol to protocol, that is how these big foreign exchanges are.
Michelle Obama told an audience she hopes to ‘change the mindset of men’ to boost girls’ education when she spoke at the Southbank Centre on Monday evening
The former First Lady sat down with Nigerian novelist Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie at the Royal Festival Hall in London to discuss her bestselling memoir Becoming
Mrs Obama also told gave her audience an insight into her relationship with former US president Barack Obama
‘People are talking to other people and then you’re briefed and you’re told “this is going to happen and don’t stand there and don’t touch there and this is precisely what is going on”.
‘This was on our last visit and we went to Windsor Castle and we took Marine One, the helicopter, and we landed in a field and we were going to be driven by the Queen and picked up in the car.
‘Our Secret Service doesn’t even let me ride around with Malia so up until that point we had never driven in a car driven by anyone else, so it was like ‘this is what’s going to happen, you’re going to get out and sit here and this is what is going to happen’.
Earlier on Monday, Mrs Obama enjoyed an emotional return to a north London secondary school she credits with inspiring her to get involved in educational reform
‘Of course your head is spinning because first of all I’m trying not to fall, which is a major thing that I think about in public. If you’re thinking about my thoughts when I come out on stage it’s ‘don’t’ fall’.
‘One of my primary goals for the eight years was to never become a meme.
‘So I had all this protocol buzzing in my head and I was like ‘don’t trip down the stairs and don’t touch anybody, whatever you do’ and so the Queen says ‘just get in, sit wherever’ and she’s telling you one thing and you’re remembering protocol and she says ‘Oh it’s all rubbish, just get in’.
Mrs Obama added that her husband had always had a great affection for the Queen, saying: ‘Barack is so incredibly fond of Her Majesty and I won’t go into his fangirling but I think it’s because she does remind him of his grandmother Toot, she’s smart and funny and honest. He is a huge fan for sure.’
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