Sophie Wessex's 'awkward' backstage run-in with Royal Variety performer revealed

Sophie Wessex had an 'awkward' conversation backstage at the Royal Variety Performance

Sophie Wessex
(Image credit: Getty)

Comedian Frank Skinner has revealed his 'awkward' run-in with the Countess of Wessex after the Royal Variety performance on Thursday night.


Speaking on his weekend Absolute Radio show, called  'The Frank Skinner Show', Frank recalled his conversation with Sophie Wessex, revealing he had turned up to rehearsals feeling unwell.

He said, "I was gradually getting more ill, and more ill, as the day went on. I was struggling. We were singing Three Lions. So I croaked my way through the dress rehearsal."

"And then, on the night, we did the show. I made Dave sound like Mario Lanza on the night. It actually hurt to sing it. Four minutes of hurt never stopped me singing. I was in physical pain."

He added that after the performance, he met with both Prince Edward and Sophie Wessex, and explained, "Sophie led the way, bearing in mind I'd had a really hard day and I battled on like a trooper. So she comes up and she says 'Well, don't give up your day job.'"

Sophie Wessex

(Image credit: Getty)

Frank added, "I thought 'This is not how the royal walk thing works'. And we honestly said 'Pardon?’ It's supposed to be just banal compliments. I said 'Was it that bad?' And she said, 'Well, you know, I could tell, you know, it's not what you do.'"

"And I said 'Erm, well, normally we're like comics'. She said 'Yeah, but you're on screen aren't you, you're not used to a live crowd.' I said, 'Well we've done a bit of live stuff you know, stand-up and stuff'. But she's sticking with it and she said, 'yeah, but you haven't done anywhere the size of this.'" 

Not letting it go, Frank recalled how he retorted back to the Countess, "Look, I did the Palladium last Sunday." He then said,  "She looked at me like 'you're not supposed to be arguing, I don't think you're supposed to be arguing with me, you're supposed to just nod'. It was like a really awkward thing."

Sophie Wessex

(Image credit: Getty)

Sophie and Prince Edward were the guests of honor at the annual event, which is held each year at the Royal Albert Hall and the first since Queen Elizabeth II died.

And Sophie's outfit stole the show, with the Countess wearing a silver Erdem dress and white gold diamond drop earrings which are thought to be worth a whopping £250k. 

Speaking to woman&home Zack Stone, one of the resident experts at Steven Stone (opens in new tab), said, "Sophie was wearing a pair of diamond and sapphire drop earrings that are set in white gold. Featuring 4 carats worth of bold sapphires and 10 carats worth of diamonds, they're a magnificent piece of jewelry." 

He added, "I'd estimate the piece to be worth a staggering £250,000."

Robyn is a celebrity and entertainment journalist and editor with over eight years experience in the industry. As well as contributing regular to woman&home, she also often writes for Woman, Woman's Own, Woman's Weekly and The Sun.