Tuesday, 15 Jun 2021

Meghan and Harry hold secret talks with BLM activist and dancer Ashley Banjo

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The London-born performer said he has had “conversations” with the Duke and Duchess of Sussex after his group was hit by a backlash for its dance routine imitating the death of George Floyd. Ashley re-enacted the tragic circumstances surrounding the death of the African American man and had a white dancer dressed as a police officer kneel on him in one segment.

The performance drew widespread criticism and nearly 30,000 complaints.

Now he has revealed that Prince Harry, 36, and Meghan, 39, were among those who contacted him to show support.

And Ashley, who is the leader of dance troupe Diversity who won the third series of Britain’s Got Talent, hinted that their paths could cross again in the future.

During an interview with host Bobby Norris on FUBAR Radio, he said: “There’s been a couple of conversations.

“I think the paths might cross at some point, I’m not sure how.

“But, yeah. I’m hoping that our paths cross.

“That’s all I’m going to say. Keep it under wraps as they say.

“We’ve got loads of like loads of common ground, things that we just both relate on.

“At the time the conversation was really needed. It was just one of many conversations I had that was like, got me through that sort of like really deep, like dark period.

“You feel like when you’re on socials that like so many people at you.

“So every single message of positivity with people supporting made the difference between me thinking that the whole country was against Diversity to thinking that there was a majority of support.

“That was basically down to the phone calls and the messages and the comments from the people that were there. So I’m forever grateful for them.”

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A collaboration between the Sussexes and Ashley would come as no surprise to many royal fans.

The former royals have made many efforts to reach out to diverse ethnic minority communities in recent months.

Last year Harry conducted a joint interview for British GQ with Patrick Hutchinson, a BLM activist and fitness trainer who went viral for a heroic act at a protest in June.

He saved a counter protestor from possible harm by carrying away from BLM activists.

Harry told him: “He could have been trampled on, or whatever could have happened in that moment.

“For a man like yourself, as we’ve already discovered, doing something like that was very much instinct.”

Harry also touched on Diversity’s controversial routine.

He suggested many people who complained about the BLM performance may not have watched the show.

He said: “What was interesting there, from what I was told, was that there were a couple of thousand complaints that came straight after the performance.

“But it was three days later or even a week later that it got up to 20,000.

“So you start to think, well, how many people actually watch the performance that have complained?”

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