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A dancer from Singapore will portray the young Princess Elizabeth in the Diamond Jubilee pageant.
Organisers of the celebratory carnival were keen to cast a woman of colour in the role to represent modern Britain and Queen Elizabeth’s status as a role model around the world so have selected 22-year-old Janice Ho to open the ‘Let’s Celebrate’ section of the carnival, which will take place in front of Buckingham Palace on 5 June.
Janice will interact with a huge dragon puppet as she depicts the monarch in her younger years coming to terms with her power and responsibility when she takes over as queen.
The London Contemporary Dance School Student told the Daily Telegraph newspaper: “I’m really excited to be able to perform to such a big crowd in countries across the Commonwealth.
“London is such a diverse place and being able to represent that is such a great opportunity.”
Janet plans to play the princess by capturing her “sense of light-heartedness”, before she had to “face the reality” of her future life as head of state.
Angie Bual, the artistic director of Trigger, which have created the ‘Princess and the Dragon’ segment, said of the casting: “She is a woman of colour and that is something we really strongly stand by.
“The Queen is such a role model, obviously in this country and internationally, and I think we need to role model all types of diversity. It is a reflection of the make-up of Britain and London today.
“I didn’t want to cast somebody that looks exactly like Queen Elizabeth. I’m really interested in bringing new, unexpected talent in.”
While Janice will be the only performer directly portraying the “real” queen, a diverse cast will portray other carnival queens that have been directly inspired by the monarch.
The eldest will be 90 and part of a ‘Gangsta Grannies’ troupe, while the parade will also feature a giant puppet Queen walking her corgis, a huge wire frame bust surrounded by dancers in the shape of the coronation robe, the royal wedding reimagined with a Bollywood slant, and a drag queen named Cheddar Gorgeous.