How To Be A Flapper....
The Goodspeed Opera House season opener this year is the musical Thoroughly Modern Millie, based on the 1967 film starring Julie Andrews and Mary Tyler Moore, about a young aspiring actresses experiencing new-found social freedoms in New York City in the ’20s during the age of jazz, bathtub gin, the Charleston, and “the flapper”.
But what’s a flapper to a 2017 audience and especially to young women of today?
We asked two actors in the show—Amy Van Norstand and Darien Crago, who have worked together in eight shows over the past four years, including Holiday Inn at Goodspeed—how they viewed this type of “modern” woman of nearly a century ago.
“As a young independent woman living in New York City, I relate whole-heartedly—especially her ambition as actor in the city,” says Crago, “which is one of the reason why I love this show so much.”
“Oh, I’m absolutely a flapper,” says Van Norstand. “That’s because I like to think I’m fearless. But more than that I know that I’m really good at celebrating life and I’ve certainly picked the best career in the world to do that. I get to constantly sing and dance and show my personality through my job and it’s thrilling. Being in theater is one of the most freeing things you could possibly do. Plus, women who are in theater are celebrated.
“But I don’t have bobbed haircut,” says Van Norstand, laughing. “It’s long and curly and definitely a 2017 look. And I rarely wear skirts past my knees. But both Darien and I both enjoy coming to rehearsal and transforming ourselves into 1920s chorus girls.”