The thing was, someone designed hats to go with these costumes. Inevitably, the hats
would be either huge, or have feathers, or something that stuck out in all directions.
Nice to look at maybe, but for dancers performing acrobatics, those were unfriendly hats.
The Merriel Abbott Dancers usually had cartwheels, walkovers, or some such feat in
the dance numbers, and that tropical number featured in the photo had a few.
If you look at the hats, you can see that they are placed precariously
on one's head. There is a lot more hat off the head than is on the head, making it
unsteady, uncertain, and fraught with probabilities. You'd think that a designer,
with years of experience, would know this. But no, those hats kept coming at us.
Every dance number, every costume, had a hat, and the hats were usually cumbersome.
In this particular dance number, the boys had to jump over the girls. Well, you can imagine!
Not a performance went by, that a hat didn't go flying. Once off the head, they were in
danger of being confiscated by the audience, as we danced on the same level as our guests.
They ate and DRANK at their tables, then watched the show on a level dance floor. They
were not beyond a little mild frivolity. We tried not to encourage it.
You could stumble over a hat lying innocently on the floor, when you were tripping the
light fantastic. You could toss an errant hat on the bandstand. You could try to pin it
back where it had been originally, without missing a step. You could! Really.
Heard in the dressing room after a show:
"Has anyone seen my hat?"
Like our current government, it befuddles the mind with the irrationality of it all.
Jiva (who is 18, bottom right)
4 days ago