Here are a few things about my day today. Driving to Hallam this morning, I was thinking about the loveliness of Rita Hayworth. I was thinking about the way she is remembered more for the tragedy in her life, rather than the virtuosity of her dancing. I remembered the quote I am using in my first chapter :
“Hayworth’s was a frank and open beauty. Her smile dazzled; her strong lithe body was amazingly fluid. Unabashedly sexual, she also possessed a playful abandon that the screen had not seen before.”
Then I was interim-assessing my third years – a conversation with them and another member of staff about their work and how they are going to approach their degree show. Bless them, I love them all and want them to do so well. All the things you hear about parenting I could apply to my experience of teaching. I feel, by turns, so proud, so disappointed, and so anxious that they will find their wings and fly. What I never realised was how teaching affects you, I’m constantly questioning if I am doing ok by students, if I am supporting them enough. Oh! I want them to do well, I don’t think I will every forget this group of third years, my first to support through the degree show and dissertation. They are teaching me how to be a teacher.
Walking up to my car, I passed the star of the Crucible’s Me and My Girl, Daniel Crossley, and so I couldn’t help myself, I blurted out congratulations like a crazed fan. Perhaps I should own it, I am a crazed fan. I saw Crossley in A Chorus Line when I worked at Sheffield Theatres and I thought he was such an amazing and highly talented dancer, capable of real pathos in his role of Paul. In this current show, which he leads, he uses all that real dance-skill and pathos, but adds comic timing and charisma. Its an amazing show exemplifying the best of the musical genre, and I guess, I am a proud-fan. But I’m not alone Daily Telegraph Review, and you can hear him here Audioboo.
I got home and found the Picture Post (Vol. 6 No.11, March 16, 1940) I bought on E-bay waiting for me. I bought it for the ‘Girls in Cabaret’ article, I wish I could type out the whole text, because its difficult to pull quotes from and the whole thing is interesting. However, what really drew my eye was the wording of the adverts: not only because of their quaint, old-fashioned language, but also because of how current they still feel, in terms of the hard-sell for example:
“At 40 her skin is only 25. Why do some women look fresh and youthful with a minimum use of cosmetics while the complexion of others begins to age in youth? Remember that your skin reaches critical age before your figure. You know that the way to keep your skin young is to keep the pores clean. You have been told that before. But you may not know the one cleanser that will do this better than cream, better than water.
This one cream is Avocado Beauty Milk, made by Coty from the oil of Calavo Avocado pear, which has greater penetrating power than cream or water. Coty Avocado Beauty Milk searches out hidden particles of powder and rouge, buried deep in the base of the pores, and floats them out to the surface.
If you want to keep your skin young and get the most out of the cosmetics you use, get some Coty Avocado Beauty Milk right away. Your skin will feel fresher and cleaner. What is more, your powder will go on better than ever”
I just googled Avocado Beauty Milk, and I can’t find it, I was hoping to get myself some…
Right, its time I get going to my dance classes – tonight its Jazz and Tap – wa-hoo!
 Majorie Rosen (1973) Popcorn Venus: Women, Movies and the American Dream, 1974 third edn. New York: Avon p.224.