St Albans dancer meets Duchess of Gloucester at Tring Park School

Basil James, 13, meeting the Duchess of Gloucester last week.

Basil James, 13, meeting the Duchess of Gloucester last week. - Credit: Archant

Performing Arts School dancer Basil James was one of the lucky pupils to meet a member of the royal family when she paid a visit last week.

Basil, 13, from Park Street is a junior dance course pupil at the Tring Park School of Performing Arts and was picked to meet the Duchess of Gloucester when she visited last Tuesday, September 28, where she observed students in dance, drama and musical theatre classes.

The Duchess, who is the president of the Royal Academy of Music, was given a tour of the school by principal Stefan Anderson and Lady Verulam and had the chance to meet members of the school staff.

Basil said: “It was an honour to be chosen to meet the Duchess of Gloucester and she came across as a lovely, genuine person.

“She asked me what I wanted to get out of the school and I said that I want to get into a big classical ballet company.”

The visit came about through the school’s relationship with Lord Lieutenant for Hertfordshire, Lady Verulam, who is President of Tring Park School.

Reflecting on the Duchess’s visit, Stefan said: “It was an honour to welcome the Duchess to Tring Park and talk to her about the school, its history and the role it plays in preparing its pupils for a career in the performing arts.

Most Read

“She was keen to hear about how the pupils combine their lessons in performing with their academic education here, as well as talk about the glittering careers of some of the alumni, which includes Lily James, Downton Abbey’s Jessica Findlay-Brown and Daisy Ridley, who will soon be featuring in the seventh chapter of the Star Wars saga.”

The Duchess said: “Everyone is so enthusiastic. There’s absolutely no break in the students’ concentration and the energy is remarkable.”