29 April 2020 08:03

HRH The Duchess of Cornwall discusses taking Silver Swans ballet classes as the RAD announces her new role as Vice-Patron

Her Royal Highness announced her new role in a special video call with the RAD’s President, Dame Darcey Bussell DBE, and Silver Swans Ambassador, Angela Rippon CBE. The Duchess will join Her Majesty The Queen, who has been Patron of the RAD since 1953.

A Royal Swan

The Duchess also discussed the importance of keeping active during lockdown, the RAD’s new online initiative RAD@Home and her own experience of taking Silver Swans classes, explaining how taking part in the classes has positively impacted her personally.

As part of HRH’s commitment to championing active ageing, The Duchess had previously visited RAD’s Headquarters in 2018 where she met a group of Silver Swans, and observed a class in action with the initiative’s ambassador Angela Rippon. She has since visited a group of ‘Swans’ in New Zealand in 2019, as well as participating in classes herself.

Speaking of her appointment as Vice-Patron in the video call, The Duchess said: "It’s a real honour for me to be asked. My visit there was so memorable, first of all because of the Silver Swans, but actually meeting everybody. It had a wonderful feeling of comradeship and also, it’s such a happy place. I think dancing makes you happy!”

Luke Rittner CBE, Chief Executive of the RAD said: “We are delighted that Her Majesty The Queen, our Patron for nearly 70 years has approved the appointment of HRH The Duchess of Cornwall as our Vice-Patron. We were thrilled to welcome The Duchess to our headquarters in 2018, and her support since, particularly for Silver Swans, has been invaluable. We look forward to many years ahead with Her Royal Highness as our Vice-Patron.”

Dame Darcey also had the opportunity to discuss the RAD’s mission to inspire the world to dance through excellence in teaching, even under lockdown conditions.


The RAD is currently offering free online Silver Swans exercise classes every Wednesday at 1pm BST on their website and social media channels. This forms part of the RAD@Home initiative, designed to bring 100 years of dance teaching expertise to your living room through a range of online content for all ages. Find out more at RAD@Home.

Related stories

22 Nov '19
RAD news / Silver Swans
22 Nov '19

HRH The Duchess of Cornwall meets Silver Swans in New Zealand

The Duchess watched a demonstration class led by Silver Swans Licensee Celia Bosman, before talking to the group about how experiencing ballet as an older…
Read more