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GOOD NIGHT AND GOOD LUCK: After an action-packed two days in London, where the Obamas were feted by royals and government ministers alike, the American couple said a big thank you to their British hosts. The first couple hosted a formal dinner at Winfield House, the American ambassador’s residence in London, inside Regent’s Park.
Michelle Obama, dressed in Ralph Lauren, greeted the guests of honor — and their hosts during the trip — Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, as well as other guests including Tom Hanks, David Beckham, JK Rowling and Colin Firth. Kristin Chenoweth of “Glee” performed after the meal. It was the last official engagement for the Obamas in the U.K.
This story first appeared in the May 26, 2011 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
Earlier in the day, it was smiles all round as Michelle Obama served up corn on the cob and coleslaw at a Downing Street barbeque, and later gave a boost to high-school students during a talk at Oxford University. Obama, dressed in a black and ecru patterned dress by Tracy Reese, joined fellow first lady Samantha Cameron — who wore a belted Jonathan Saunders dress — behind the buffet table in the rose garden. The two served up side dishes — including Jersey Royal potatoes, coleslaw and Caesar salad — to British and American military veterans and their families. Meanwhile, President Obama and the British prime minister David Cameron manned the grills, flipping the burgers and sausages.
Michelle Obama also made time to travel to Oxford for an inspirational talk with female students from the Elizabeth Garrett Anderson secondary school, located in north London. The talk — coupled with a tour of the university and mentoring sessions — was meant to encourage the students to pursue further education. Obama had made a surprise visit to the school during a trip to London two years ago, and had remained in touch with them.