Prince William, Prince George, and Huge Swiftie Princess Charlotte’s Meetup with Taylor Swift Backstage Almost Didn’t Happen At All

The lead up to the private meet-and-greet was full of “stress and panic,” but it worked out in the end.

Prince William posts backstage selfie with Taylor Swift after London concert.
(Image credit: Instagram: @princeandprincessofwales)

Princess Charlotte is apparently a “huge” Swiftie—as in, for the uninitiated, a fan of the one and only Taylor Swift—and has been wanting to go to an Eras Tour show for months, which she finally got her chance to do when Swift played night one of her London run at Wembley Stadium on Friday night. Dad of the year Prince William—who was celebrating his 42nd birthday that same day—took Charlotte and her older brother, Prince George, to not only see the show but to meet Swift herself—a moment that was documented on social media, and almost didn’t happen.

“Princess Charlotte is the huge Taylor Swift fan in the family,” a source told Entertainment Tonight. “She has wanted to go to the concert for months, but, with her mum being treated for cancer, this was a really special day to be able to celebrate her Papa’s birthday like this.”

As she continues to receive treatment for cancer, the Princess of Wales remained at home and skipped the Eras Tour; she was hanging out with the youngest of the Wales brood, Prince Louis, who also wasn’t at the show.

“Charlotte absolutely loved [the concert],” the source said. “They are really wonderful children. William and Kate have done a fantastic job raising all three of them.”

Swift and her boyfriend Travis Kelce—who plays football for the Kansas City Chiefs, just in case you didn’t know that—met up with William, George, and Charlotte for a private meet-and-greet backstage, which both Swift and the Prince and Princess of Wales documented on their respective social media channels. The source speaking to Entertainment Tonight made sure to note that both Charlotte and George “understand and appreciate how lucky they are, meeting someone like Taylor Swift,” they said, and that they recognize their good fortune. 

Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and Prince Louis at Trooping the Colour

George and Charlotte know how lucky they are to get to meet Taylor Swift, a source said. (Louis, for his part, sat the Eras Tour out.)

(Image credit: Getty Images)

For the occasion, Charlotte—the royal family’s biggest Swiftie—wore a rose gold dress known as a “Kids Sequin Party Dress” by retailer John Lewis that sells for just 26 pounds, The Mirror reports. (Unfortunately, and not surprisingly, the outfit has since sold out.) Charlotte was, as ever, perfectly dressed for the moment—complete with braids and a light-up bracelet—but the moment almost didn’t happen at all, Hello reports. William, George, and Charlotte were running a bit behind schedule, and the outlet reports that the Wales trio met up with Swift just 25 minutes before she hit the stage: “They had a nightmare getting in,” a source told the outlet. “They were running really late, but they had planned to get there earlier so they could have the meet and greet with Taylor beforehand, because they knew they wanted to leave early.”

The meetup did happen, after all, before the trio headed to the box to see the show, albeit with a bit of “stress and panic,” they said.

William tried to keep a low profile at the show, The Daily Express reports, so as to let his kids enjoy the night. “Most of the time, he and the kids were further back so they didn’t draw too much attention, but there were moments where they were at the front, so a lot of swapping was happening,” they said, adding that “There was one sweet moment where William and Charlotte were sat next to each other at the front, and you could tell they were having a little sing-song together, which was cute.” 

William went a bit viral for his so-called “dad dancing” to Swift’s hit “Shake It Off,” and a source close to the Prince of Wales said he didn’t mind, as he “is focused on his wife and children right now,” they said. “He really just wanted it to be a special night for Prince George and Princess Charlotte.” (Mission clearly accomplished.)

Per The Sun, royal expert Phil Dampier said William’s “dad dancing” showed that he is “relaxed” and “so much happier” following the darker earlier days of 2024, which saw both his wife, the Princess of Wales, and his father, King Charles, face down cancer diagnoses. “It was fantastic to see Prince William enjoying himself at Wembley the other night,” Dampier said. “The fact that he was so relaxed and so enjoying himself was the thing that really struck me, and he obviously didn’t mind that he was being filmed. He must have known that people would pick up on it. Everyone’s got a mobile phone these days, and they were filming him. I think the main thing it tells us is that for him to be that relaxed, and that happy, he must be so much happier that Kate is well on the road to recovery.”

He added of Kate that “Obviously we saw her at Trooping the Colour, which was a fantastic sign, and the fact that he can leave her at home and he can go out with the kids and enjoy himself shows that he’s very much pleased with her progress.”

Prince William and Kate Middleton at Trooping the Colour

The Prince and Princess of Wales, seen here at Trooping the Colour earlier this month.

(Image credit: Getty Images)

In addition to the Wales kids, William’s close cousin Zara Tindall—daughter of Princess Anne—was in the 90,000 strong crowd with her husband, Mike, and their two daughters, Mia and Lena. William, George, and Charlotte made an early exit from the show, leaving 10 minutes before it concluded “to stay hidden from eager Swifties,” The Sun reports.

“They left around 10 minutes before the end to miss the crowds,” a source said. “It was buzzing in their box. Everyone was having such a brilliant time for Prince William’s birthday.”

Prince William birthday photo

The photo released to mark William's 42nd birthday last Friday, the same day the Wales family attended the Eras Tour.

(Image credit: Courtesy of the Prince and Princess of Wales / Instagram)

Speaking on The Sun’s “Royal Exclusive” show, royal expert Emily Nash said “Earlier this year, we were seeing William perhaps once a week, and there were lots of caveats around how long he was going to be at an engagement, what time it would be,” she said. “It felt like things were being very much tailored around his duties at home. And I think that the fact that he’s out there more, and the fact that we’re seeing Kate in action herself, really suggests that they’re making really good progress—so good to see.”

Swift has wrapped up the first leg of her Wembley Stadium and London run, but she’ll be back in August for five more shows, on August 15, 16, 17, 19, and 20. Maybe Kate and Louis will join in two months’ time?

Rachel Burchfield
Senior Celebrity and Royals Editor

Rachel Burchfield is a writer, editor, and podcaster whose primary interests are fashion and beauty, society and culture, and, most especially, the British Royal Family and other royal families around the world. She serves as Marie Claire’s Senior Celebrity and Royals Editor and has also contributed to publications like Allure, Cosmopolitan, Elle, Glamour, Harper’s Bazaar, InStyle, People, Vanity Fair, Vogue, and W, among others. Before taking on her current role with Marie Claire, Rachel served as its Weekend Editor and later Royals Editor. She is the cohost of Podcast Royal, a show that was named a top five royal podcast by The New York Times. A voracious reader and lover of books, Rachel also hosts I’d Rather Be Reading, which spotlights the best current nonfiction books hitting the market and interviews the authors of them. Rachel frequently appears as a media commentator, and she or her work has appeared on outlets like NBC’s Today Show, ABC’s Good Morning America, CNN, and more.