Will THIS be former actress Meghan’s first royal patronage?
13th December 2018

Will THIS be former actress Meghan’s first royal patronage? Duchess sparks speculation as she holds a private meeting with the National Theatre artistic director Rufus Norris

  • Duchess of Sussex reportedly met with National Theatre’s artistic director
  • The royal, 37, is said to have spoken to Rufus Norris, 53, on Wednesday
  • Report sparked speculation that the duchess could replace the Queen as patron 

The Duchess of Sussex sparked speculation that she could soon be handed her first patronage after she reportedly met with the artistic director of the National Theatre.

Meghan, 37, is said to have spoken to director Rufus Norris, 53, in a private engagement yesterday.

News of the meeting, reported on Twitter royal correspondent Omid Scobie, led some to question whether she might soon take over from the Queen as the theatre’s patron. 

New appointment? The Duchess of Sussex sparked speculation that she could soon be handed her first patronage after she reportedly met with the artistic director of the National Theatre. Pictured, Meghan at the British Fashion Awards in London on Monday night

Private meeting: Meghan, 37, is said to have spoken to director Rufus Norris, 53, pictured, in an unannounced engagement yesterday. Norris has been artistic director since 2015

Speculation: News of the meeting, reported on Twitter royal correspondent Omid Scobie, led some to question whether she might soon take over from the Queen as the theatre’s patron

The duchess, who is expecting her first child with Prince Harry next spring, has carried out in a number of unannounced engagements in recent weeks, including a surprise appearance at the British Fashion Awards on Monday.

It is not known where her meeting with Norris took place but it is thought to be somewhere in London. 


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The Queen is the long-time patron of the National Theatre, a publicly funded institution, but has started to handover her appointments to other family members in recent years. 

Royal supporters noted Meghan would be a fitting replacement with her background in acting. 

Perfect match: Royal supporters noted Meghan would be a fitting replacement with her background in acting

And, as Mr Scobie noted, Norris has been ‘determined to promote cultural diversity and inclusivity at the playhouse’ since taking up the post of artistic director three years ago.

One royal fan tweeted: ‘Can I smell the future patronage here?’ 

Another added: ‘National Theater, Royal Variety Charity…hmmm I do get a feeling one of these will be her Patronage soon.’

The Duchess of Sussex has demonstrated her firm support for the arts since joining the Royal Family. 

Support: The Duchess of Sussex has demonstrated her firm support for the arts since joining the Royal Family. She chose the opening of an exhibition at the Royal Academy of Arts as her first official solo engagement in September, pictured

She chose the opening of an exhibition at the Royal Academy of Arts as her first official solo engagement in September and has joined Prince Harry at a gala performance of Hamilton. 

Norris, who took over as artistic director following the departure of Sir Nicholas Hytner, came to prominence in 2001 with his production of Afore Night Came at the Young Vic. 

He subsequently moved into film with his debut feature, Broken, opening at the Cannes Film Festival in 2012. It won Best Film at the British Independent Film Awards.

MailOnline has contacted Kensington Palace for comment.  

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