Meghan Markle has become the picture of a poised member of the Royal Family, but that didn't stop her from shrieking and rushing over to meet one of her favourite reality TV contestants! During an interview on Lorraine on Friday (July 27), former The Voice Kids finalist Donel Mangena talked about meeting the Duke and Duchess of Sussex backstage at Royal Albert Hall during the Queen's 92nd birthday celebration in April. "Harry and Meghan walked in and I expected a handshake but Meghan screamed my name and ran over to give me a hug," he said.
The 16-year-old was invited to the star-studded event to sing his version of Pharrell's "Happy," and he says he had a memorable interaction with Prince Harry too. Donel says the 33-year-old told him, "our money's on you!" The young contestant jokingly replied, "Thanks Harry, no pressure." In the end, despite his royal fans, Donel took the runner-up spot as 18-year-old Ruti Olajugbagbe won the competition.
The star-studded celebration, which saw Prince William, Prince Charles, Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie in the audience, featured performances by Kylie Minogue, Shaggy, Tom Jones and Canada's own Shawn Mendes - who almost met Prince Harry and Meghan and had a hilariously awkward run-in with Her Majesty.
“I’m in this backstage area before you go on stage … and I’m standing there waiting to go on stage and the Queen just walks up next to me,” he told Ellen DeGeneres, adding that he’s well versed in royal protocol. “You’re not allowed to speak to her unless she speaks to you first, so it was like ten minutes of awkward silence between me and the Queen.”
To make matters even funnier, Shawn also bumped into Harry and Meghan the very same day – a moment that he says he’ll never let himself live down. “This is going to be my biggest regret ever. I was walking down the halls and I see them in one room,” he explained. “And they’re just talking and I walked in with this confident and the second they kind of felt me coming, I just turned around. My body went numb and I was like, ‘I can’t do it, I can’t do it.’ I’ve never been so star struck like that.”