EDEN CONFIDENTIAL: Meghan Markle hits the wrong note with global opera star Danielle de Niese as soprano, 43, hits back at Duchess of Sussex’s attack on ‘racist’ Britain
Opera star Danielle de Niese found Meghan’s claims of racism in Britain ‘very unsettling’.
As a prominent woman of colour who has married into an upper-class, white, British family attached to one of our most beloved institutions, de Niese might be expected to have an affinity with the Duchess of Sussex.
However, the opera star, who is married to Gus Christie, executive chairman of the Glyndebourne opera festival, did not appreciate the comments made in the couple’s bombshell interview with Oprah Winfrey.
‘What I think is strange is to get your home country of America to say that the entire country of Britain is racist… I find that very unsettling.
‘It’s not to say that racism isn’t everywhere, because it is, but I don’t think you can tar everyone with the same brush like that. To say a whole community of people are racist, that hasn’t been my experience.’
Gus Christie and Danielle de Niese are pictured at Picturehouse Central on January 11, 2023 in London, England
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s claims that the UK is ‘racist’ did not sit well with de Niese
The soprano, 43, whose parents are from Sri Lanka with mixed European heritage, spent her childhood in Australia before emigrating with her family to America as a teenager.
Now chatelaine of the estate in the South Downs, East Sussex, where music lovers enjoy picnics on the lawn before watching the world-famous opera during the summer, she considers Britain to be her home.
She did not agree with Meghan and Harry’s slurs about ‘racism’ in the Royal Family – which the Prince rowed back from in recent interviews – saying Meghan should have followed her example.
Danielle De Niese performs on stage at BBC Proms in the Park at Hyde Park on September 12, 2015 in London, England
Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex arrive Fua’amotu Airport on October 25, 2018 in Nuku’alofa, Tonga
‘I am a mixed-race person and I have married a man who is not in the Royal Family but is still part of a big institution,’ de Niese told the Mail.
‘I’ve set out to support my husband and learn about the people around me.
‘I very much set about learning about what happens here.
‘There were people who tried to imply that I was ”trailblazing”, but I wasn’t into that because it feeds the ego.’
The First Lady of Glyndebourne has two young children with Christie and is stepmother to his four sons from his first marriage. ‘When Meghan and Harry first came to public attention, everyone was super happy for them,’ she adds.
‘I feel like we’ll never really know why it went wrong. It’s a complex story.’
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