Prince Charles and Camilla dance to jazz in New Zealand (IMAGES)


The Prince of Wales gave a ballroom dancing masterclass when he spoke – without the Duchess of Cornwall.

A quick-footed Charles wowed audiences with his movements as he spun a female companion to the sound of 1940s swing jazz music.

But Camilla was not left out, she also moved a few meters from the prince with her own partner.

The royal couple got fully involved with a pop-up dance floor

The royal couple showed their lighter side when they visited Christchurch in New Zealand on Friday to learn how its residents rebuilt their lives after last year’s devastating earthquake.

The Dance Floor is a pop-up installation called Dance-O-Mat, created by the Gap Filler charitable foundation, which features prepaid lighting and sound from a washing machine that plays tunes from an mp3 player.

For nearly two years, the organization has found creative uses for the open spaces left after the earthquake that struck Christchurch in September 2010 and the second deadly earthquake in February 2011 that killed more than 180 people. .

Camilla was the first to hit the dance floor after accepting an invitation from Sam Johnson, an undergraduate student who has been widely praised for organizing an army of student volunteers to help in the aftermath of the devastating natural disaster.

The Duchess, who is a well-known fan of the BBC celebrity ballroom dance show Strictly Come Dancing, held the student activist’s right hand with hers and they moved at a gentle pace.

After a few moments, Camilla turned to her husband who was looking sideways and said “Come on honey, you have to dance too”.

But it was Lisa Shannon, 57, a psychology student from Christchurch who seized the opportunity and asked the heir to the throne if he wanted to cut a rug.

Charles had a faster pace than his wife and spun his partner around and then grabbed both of her hands.

The Heir to the Throne danced cheek to cheek with Ms Shannon and laughed as they parted and then spun her again as he showed off his skills.

Ms Shannon was breathless after the prince’s impromptu dance lesson and said: “If you don’t ask you don’t receive I just saw him standing there looking a bit lonely and I thought I would ask her to dance. “

The 57-year-old was impressed with his masterful presence on the dance floor: “He led and I followed and I’m not used to it, but he was definitely in charge.”

The royal couple’s whirlwind on the dance floor came after visiting a shopping area in Christchurch city center to see how retailers and independent businesses forced out of their premises by the earthquake settled into containers from refurbished cargo ship.

The Re: Start project saw the large, brightly painted metal boxes fitted with doors and windows and stacked to create temporary retail spaces.

Buyers harassed members of the royal family as they walked along Cashel Street to meet retailers in their new homes.

A reminder of the earthquake loomed nearby – a large building destroyed by mechanical equipment.

Survivors of the natural disaster had previously told the Prince and Duchess their poignant stories during a reception at the offices of Christchurch City Council.

The royal couple privately met with around 20 people seriously injured in the collapse of buildings in the 6.3 magnitude earthquake that struck at 12:51 p.m. on February 22 last year.

Considerable damage was caused especially in the center of Christchurch and its eastern suburbs, as the epicenter of the earthquake was close to the center of the city and the buildings had been weakened by the 2010 earthquake.

More than half of those killed were in Canterbury’s six-story television building, which collapsed and caught fire.

Bev Edwards, 54, a nurse from Christchurch, is now a paraplegic in a wheelchair after a cafe roof collapsed on her while she was having lunch with her mother.

Ms Edwards said: “I was in a cafeteria considered safe, but the building next door fell to the side and the roof entered.

“I knew I had broken my back and I was eventually carried over a door used as a stretcher. The lady at a table next to me was killed and my mother sat across from me and walked away. could get out.

“It is extremely important that the prince came to meet us, we are not people who died, we are here, but there has not been a lot of recognition for the seriously injured.”

Charles and Camilla’s visit to Christchurch came on the last day of their Diamond Jubilee tour to mark the Queen’s 60-year reign which saw them visit Australia and Papua New Guinea.

It’s not the first time Charles has done a bit of boogie. See our slideshow of the Dancing Prince through the years.


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