By Max Greenhalgh • 01 May 2023 • 7:55
"Find this man" Rita Ora pleads with fans as singer blown away with dancing from audience
When Ian Smith, a 57-year-old man from Adelaide was filming doing the ‘worm’ at a Prince’s Trust Gala in New York during a set by Rita Ora, he had no idea it would lead to the video clip being shared millions of times.
Ora used her 2.5 million TikTok followers to track Smith down. “Find this man … I need him at every show,” she said. “I need you in my life.”
Eventually, Smith’s wife, Natasha Stott Despoja contacted Ora and confirmed that the “worm guy” was her husband.
“Natasha sort of saw her and said, ‘My husband is the worm guy,’ to which she reacted with such fondness … I took it as fondness, she probably thought I was a mad stalker,” Smith told ABC radio, adding that he had perfected the move over many years.
“You don’t want to be overconfident in these things,” he said. “There have been a few times when I have been very sore. But luckily the other night wasn’t too bad.”
Smith is a lobbyist and Stott Despoja is the deputy chair of Prince’s Trust Australia. The pair were attending the Prince’s Trust Gala in New York together.
“It was a different form of diplomacy but it was all for the right cause. And I have to tell you, Rita Ora was just the most wonderful, charming person. It’s been a bit of fun.
“I’ve left Adelaide for the big time now. The worm goes global.”
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