Last night, Edward Enninful brought royal glamor to New York City. As the host of the Prince’s Trust Global Gala, Enninful gathered the world’s leading philanthropists, titans, and stars to celebrate the essential work done by the organization.
As the sun began to fade over the East River, a parade of town cars arrived at Cipriani South Street. Inside the grand venue, a dazzling crowd gathered. Kings of American fashion, Tommy Hilfiger and Michael Kors, mingled with European royalty. In her dark satin gown, Kate Moss appeared a modern-day Greta Gabo—her diamond choker shimmered in the ballroom’s dim light. Iman, a fellow icon of 20th-century fashion, stunned in a polka-dotted frock. With curls piled high like Grease’s Sandy Olsson, Irina Shayk, almost unrecognizable for the festivities, sported a lace mini-dress and green platform boots. Fellow beauties Precious Lee, Stella Maxwell, and Winnie Harlow also swanned around the room. Grammy-winner Doja Cat attracted stares as she slunk through the dining room in her lace getup, a fur cape trailing behind her. Rita Ora, the evening's performer, paired an Old Hollywood white dress with white gloves.
Not to be outdone by the supermodels and chanteuses, screen sirens too dressed up. Sienna Miller looked fresh in a sheer camisole embroidered with delicate flowers. Eiza González glittered in a column of sequined rust. Literally unmissable, Kate Beckinsale floated in a cloud of highlighter yellow that glowed in the dark.
Of course, for all the visual spectacle, the gala was intended to raise money for the Trust and the life-changing aid it provides. King Charles II (then the Prince of Wales) founded the Prince’s Trust in 1976. Initially, the organization focused on underprivileged youth in the United Kingdom. Now a global operation, the Trust provides grants, mentorship, and education to young people in need.
Despite the many stars in the audience, two men were notably absent. King Charles, who had an apologetic letter read to the crowd, was caught up in preparations for his May 6 coronation. Lionel Richie, Global Ambassador and Chairman, sent a video message expressing his regret at missing the event, although his excuses were similarly understandable. Last week, he walked his daughter down the aisle in the most talked about wedding of the year. Next week, he will perform at the King’s coronation.
Throughout the night, nearly every speaker and honoree spoke of the importance of confidence. By investing in the future of children, the Trust allows those children to believe in themselves. That conviction can be transformative, as shown by over a million lives changed by the initiative. The work is more necessary than ever, given the current economic and social uncertainties throughout the world.
“Unlocking confidence starts a magical chain reaction and a virtuous circle of positivity,” said Charlotte Tilbury, Global Ambassador of Enterprise. “Since the pandemic, there is a real crisis in confidence in the younger generations.”
Throughout the night, attendees heard from young participants from the programs like Tracey-Ann Harriage. Through the Explore Enterprise program, Harriage, a Jamaican survivor of domestic violence, launched two social enterprises that support fellow victims of abuse.
Idris Elba took to the stage to share his own experience with the Prince’s Trust. As a promising young actor from East London, Elba wanted to apply to a pre-professional drama course, but his family could not afford the fee. His theater teacher advised him to look into the Prince’s Trust. After auditioning, he was given the opportunity to pursue his passion. “The one thing the Prince’s Trust gave me was confidence,” Elba said. “It gave me the confidence to believe in what I do, who I am, and what I can be.”
Following a delicious feast of short ribs, a live auction garnered dizzying prices. The lots included a dinner for twenty at Highgrove House and a ride on Lionel Richie’s private plane to attend his Vegas concert. The crowd cheered as the bids grew higher.
After dessert cleared, Rita Ora took to the stage. Her electrifying set included the first-ever performance of her new single “Praising You (feat. Fatboy Slim),” a reimagining of his ’90s big beat hit. The crowd danced and hollered as Ora provided the perfect ending to a night of celebration and commitment.
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