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Princess of Asturias Award winners: Meryl Streep, Mary's Meals, Haruki Marukami...
Friday, October 27, 2023 @ 3:33 PM

A HOLLYWOOD legend joining folk-dancers from Asturias and showing off her fancy footwork in the street is not a scene your average Oviedo resident witnesses during his or her weekly shop. Even though their northern-Spanish city is the birthplace of a Formula 1 icon (that's you, Fernando Alonso), meaning it already boasts celebrity credentials, the image of Meryl Streep having a crack at the gaitas is one the locals will not be able to get out of their heads for a while.

Meryl Streep joins in the Asturian folk dance, the gaitas (photo: EFE)

But they were not hallucinating: The actress with the most Oscar and Golden Globe nominations in cinema history was, indeed, outside the old La Vega arms factory in Asturias' regional capital, joining in with the traditional local dance as the marching band El Gumial played its Celtic-based folk music.

Meryl, 74, radiant in red and black trousers and a black jacket with her pale blonde locks flowing long and loose, engaged, smiling, with the public, waving and blowing kisses, as she headed to the La Vega building for the annual Princess of Asturias Awards Ceremony.

Princess Leonor gives a speech at her namesake awards (this photo and the next: Princess of Asturias Award Foundation - Fundación Princesa de Asturias, or FPA)

The Mamma MiaOut of Africa and The Devil Wears Prada actress was looking forward to picking up a trophy from Spain's future queen, Leonor – the Princess of Asturias herself – who, just days short of her 18th birthday on Hallowe'en, would be presenting her namesake awards.

On a short leave from her Armed Forces training in Zaragoza, no doubt Princess Leonor was looking forward to meeting the silver-screen queen every bit as much as Meryl was to getting her prize from the teen Royal.


What are the Princess of Asturias Awards?

Often considered Spain's national answer to the Nobel Prizes, what used to be the Prince of Asturias Awards (until said Prince became King Felipe VI, in 2014) gives winners a certificate, a trophy-sized sculpture by the late, great surrealist artist Joan Miró, a badge, and €50,000 in cash.


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