Hannah Waddingham cements her status as Queen of Christmas as she hugs William and Kate at the Royal Variety Performance

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Hannah Waddingham (left) appeared to delight Kate MIddleton (centre) and Prince William (right) who were both beaming as they spoke with her

The Prince and Princess of Wales were all smiles as they met with the new Queen of Christmas Hannah Waddington at the Royal Variety Performance in London last night.

The annual event, at the Royal Albert Hall, took place amid reports that the Danish version of author Omid Scobie’s new book End Game named mentioned two names of senior royals he claimed expressed ‘concerns’ about the colour of Prince Archie ‘s skin. 

But the swirling race row appeared not to concern William and Kate, 41, as they dazzled at the event.  

Kate paired her stunning £1,288 Talina gown from Safiyaa with an equally dazzling smile as she stepped out in Kensington Meanwhile, William was just as dapper in black and white with a bow tie.

And Hannah Waddingham, whose Christmas Special recently debuted on Apple TV to major critical acclaim, was also dazzling in a single-shouldered full length gold gown.

Hannah Waddingham (left) appeared to delight Kate MIddleton (centre) and Prince William (right) who were both beaming as they spoke with her

Queen of Christmas: recently referred to as the Queen of Christmas thanks to the recent success of her Apple special , wore a single shouldered gold full length gown at the evnt

Queen of Christmas: recently referred to as the Queen of Christmas thanks to the recent success of her Apple special , wore a single shouldered gold full length gown at the evnt

The trio appeared delighted to be meeting, with photographs showing the trio beaming in each other’s presence, despite the race row.

The pair identified in the book were named widely by media organisations around the world tonight, including the Guardian and the Times, as King Charles and Kate.

Hannah Waddingham has been referred to as the Queen of Christmas thanks to the recent success of her Apple special

Recorded live at The Coliseum in London, the one-hour special features the Ted Lasso star ringing in the season with musical performances of beloved Christmas classics. 

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The Independent described it as ‘like an old-fashioned variety show’ and say it is ‘reminiscent of An Audience with’ while the Guardian said ‘not even the Grinch could bah-humbug’ it.

Joining Hannah on stage is Sam Ryder, Luke Evans, and Hamilton star Leslie Odom Jr. as well as Phil Dunster who plays Jamie Tartt in Ted Lasso and more special guests.  

There are also appearances from additional performers including the English National Opera, the London Gay Men’s Chorus, The Fabulous Lounge Swingers and an 18-piece band. 

Along the way, Hannah shares her personal journey to this magical moment with anecdotes and memories about her own holiday experiences. 

The trio all appeared dazzling in their finery as they met at the annual London event, smiling as they spoke

The trio all appeared dazzling in their finery as they met at the annual London event, smiling as they spoke

Despite the event coming amid the controversy around Omid Scobie's recent book Endgame, the royals appeared in good sprits

Despite the event coming amid the controversy around Omid Scobie’s recent book Endgame, the royals appeared in good sprits

Hannah Waddingham has become known as the Queen of Christmas thanks to her involvement in festive season entertainment

Hannah Waddingham has become known as the Queen of Christmas thanks to her involvement in festive season entertainment

Speaking to Forbes, Hannah said that in pitching the tone of special, she told executives that it would be, ‘somewhere between Dean Martin and Carol Burnett [shows],’ describing it as, ‘that style of having people over for the holidays, dropping in in their finery. 

‘I mean, I feel like it’s a bygone era with people in beautiful dinner jackets and beautiful dresses, so I was keen for the band to be in their tuxes and my backing vocalists to feel a million dollars.’ 

It was FEMAIL that dubbed Hannah ‘the Queen of Christmas’ a moniker that has now been widely used to describe the star.

 As well as her Apple TV special, Hannah is starring in Christmas adverts for Baileys and Marks & Spencer.

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And it seems Hannah, who has also had roles in Sex Education and Game of Thrones, has always loved the festive season.

Speaking about her Bailey’s advert, the 48-year-old said: ‘Christmas is my favourite part of the year; a time to get together with my friends and family and indulge in our own festive traditions. 

After getting her big-break on Ted Lasso in her mid-forties, the starlet has gone from strength to strength, from wowing Eurovision audiences to now nabbing the Christmas advert crown.

While Hannah Waddingham has a huge legion of her own fans, she is a huge fan of Prince William herself. 

She recently praised Prince William for being ‘quite the extraordinary man’ – and revealed how she communicated that to the royal.

Hannah, who has spoken about Prince William with extremely high praise in the past herself, pictured performing at the Royal Variety Performance 2023

Hannah, who has spoken about Prince William with extremely high praise in the past herself, pictured performing at the Royal Variety Performance 2023

Hannah solidified her bond with the Prince of Wales  after she hosted the Earthshot Prize Award Ceremony in Singapore earlier this month – a moment that made Hannah ‘very proud’.

Talking to Parade magazine, Hannah referred to William as a ‘glorious gentleman’ and revealed the sweet exchange where she and co-host Sterling K. Brown told the prince so.

‘We were hosting together, and he and I said to Prince William: “Sir, I hope you realise that you are a cut above the rest because you are”,’ she recalled. 

Talking to the magazine, Hannah said: ‘What a glorious man he is. I even said to him myself with the equally fabulous Sterling K. Brown.

‘We were hosting together, and he and I said to Prince William: “Sir, I hope you realise that you are a cut above the rest because you are.”‘

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She added: ‘He has created the Earthshot organisation, and he isn’t a poster boy for it.’

‘It was very obvious from being out there that he is the beating heart, and he really does care.’

The actress, who recently featured in Marks and Spencer’s Christmas advert, explained that William set out to ensure all contestants were cared for throughout the process, by ‘holding them up’ and ensuring they have everything they require.

‘He absolutely has those finalists and the people that are in that whole competition, he holds them up, he gets them everything they need,’ she said.

Among the other celebrities the princess (princess, left) met at the event were musician Paloma Faith (pictured right)

Among the other celebrities the princess (princess, left) met at the event were musician Paloma Faith (pictured right)

Kate Middleton (pictured, right) appeared deep in thought as she was snapped standing with Bradley Walsh)

Kate Middleton (pictured, right) appeared deep in thought as she was snapped standing with Bradley Walsh)

Prince William is snapped shaking hands with the members of the band McFly during the Royal Variety Performance at the Royal Albert Hall

Prince William is snapped shaking hands with the members of the band McFly during the Royal Variety Performance at the Royal Albert Hall

And Hannah didn’t stop there. ‘That man is passionate about the environment, and I was very proud to be there and be the figure heard for his organisation.’

She concluded: ‘He’s quite an extraordinary man.’

The royals met a number of other celebrities at the event last night, among them Paloma Faith, who was also dressed in a gold gown which matched her flowing blonde locks.

And Kate and Bradley Walsh were photographed looking pensive as they conversed with each other at the annual ‘do. 

Among the other celebrities met by Prince William at the festive event were the  members of band McFly, who grinned as they lined up to shake hands.

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