On Stage

  

“Dancers should be in costume with their make up on, ready for the photographer at 7PM.”

Make up?

Make up?

Truthfully, I am not ready for this. I am not ready see what a grown up version of my little girl is going to look like.

Oh, sure, she loves make up, but she still thinks that a beautiful application of lipstick extends about an inch beyond the actual lips, hardly realistic and I am just fine with that.

I was not allowed to wear make up growing up. Even all through high school. None. Now, I had my ways of getting around that, to be sure… For instance, I had art pastels. The colored chalk sticks made great blush and eyeshadow in a pinch. Or black acrylic paint could stand in for mascara (I was too desperate at the time to worry about what that might actually do to my eyeballs). The trick was keeping it subtle so that my parents couldn’t tell and my brothers wouldn’t realize and rat on me but still enough that I did not stand out to my peers as a repressed, prudish freak. A very delicate balance.

I swore through all of that I would not do the same to any daughter of mine.

Then I had one. And now she is five and in dance and has to wear make up!?!??!!?

So now I am left wondering if the whole issue with make up for my own parents was not that it would make me look like a whore, as they said, but rather having to adjust to the reality of their daughter growing up. 

Maybe both.

I am not going to ask them, though.

Excuse me while I go watch some tutorials on dance make-up application.

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77 thoughts on “On Stage

  1. This is mandatory? I suppose I understand the idea that makeup will help faces of the dancers stand out and not simply blur into the background of the stage, or if they are in costume as a character and need to make their face look a bit more like their dance persona, but…I am right there with you imagining the 3 year old “beauty queen” image. 😦

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I always had mixed feelings about having to put makeup on my daughter for dance recitals when she was little.
    What got me more is when she started wearing glasses the instructions said they shouldn’t wear their glasses for the recital.
    My daughter is seventeen now and rarely wears makeup. When she was younger though I just didn’t see the hurry of doing the makeup thing. Plus it is hard to put lipstick on little lips and mascara on tiny lashes…at least for this mom.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’ve not gone through that Victo,but I do know that the strong lights used on stage are designed for the cameras and not to make the actors/dancers look good. Unfortunately it is up to the actors/dancers to make them selves look respectable under harsh lights that are not flattering, I can certainly understand any Mother who will not allow make-up on their daughters under normal lighting and for daily use, but do allow make-up on the stage. I hope she does well.

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  4. Yours was a pretty common experience for girls of my era. (Likely older than you.) For my grandparents’ generation, it was too expensive. For my parents’ generation, it was the way their parents did it. Girls of my era just learned to sneak behind their parents’ backs. This included clothes they carried to school and changed into. As parents, my group is a little more easy going. I’m more interested in what the kid wants than what some instructor wants though.

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    • Ha! Victo, close your ears- this is only for those whose kids have grown past teen years. At one point in my life I was delivering fuel to gas stations in the GTA (Greater Toronto Area). I was unloading one evening at a 7-11 north of the city (Rutherford) when an old green Dodge Caravan pulled in and a teen hopped out with a kit bag. She had on a long sweater with jeans and short pull on flat boots. Her hair was in a pony tail and under the harsh lights it was clear that she had no make-up on. There were a few other kids in the van and a Mom driving. The young lady disappeared into the service station, and it being dark outside with full windows in the front, I watched her as she walked to the rear and entered the women’s washroom. The van left and about 10 minutes later a silver sports car pulled up and a young man dressed to the nines with olive skin and a fancy suit jumped out and began to fill the gas tank. When he finished he went inside and stood at the counter to pay. After that he made his way to the rear of the station and waited for a moment. The young girl, appearing 10 years older with full make-up appeared. She was breathtaking, with long shiny straight hair, a top that barely covered her ample breasts, a mini-skirt and thigh-high leather boots with 4 inch heels.She was wobbly on the heels and he escorted her out to the car where they hopped in and took off.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Haha, oh boy. Lemme tell you, as a former dancer, the make up has to be downright gaudy for any features to be seen, but then everyone looks the same, so it’s not so bad up there. Lotsa cold cream after. I always lined the girls’ eyes, little purple or blue across the lids, blush for one, but the other two had rosy cheeks, and then the classic garish pink lips. Those pink lips look a lot better on blondes. It really isn’t fair.
    Anyway it’s only for a few hours.
    I’m glad mine decided they’d rather run and play soccer for exercise. πŸ˜‰

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Maybe this is an age-old conflict between kids and parents. Kids want to grow up as fast as possible, and parents try to slow that process down. Perhaps it’s better for both that they just surrender to the dictates of Time.

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  7. My daughter is Asian, so I was no help to her. But I did get her a book on make-up for Asian faces when I thought the time was right (high school) and made sure she didn’t overdo. Most of the time she wore hardly any because she was an athlete. That’s how i was in HS, too. I wear more now than I’ve probably every worn – aging and wrinkles and all that! Your daughter will be fine…

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  8. It’s funny, my mother was always telling me to “use a little blush” to make me look better. But I wouldn’t have had a clue on how to tell my girls how to apply makeup. Luckily, neither was interested, although the younger one loves doing her nails. I don’t remember ballet ever requiring it either. The influence of old hippie parents, I guess. I’m sure these days it’s quite competitive and much more glamourous…(K)

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  9. I was allowed to wear make-up, but have thought to myself quite a bit recently, no one ever showed me HOW to do it. My mom never taught me and there was no older sister so I just tried it myself -and that was during the era of blue eye-liner and too pink blush. So I’m 40 now and still don’t know how to wear make-up. I’m still clueless, but I did ditch the blue…

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  10. Make up is part of the fun and being in the THEE-ATE-ER….. I too was not allowed to wear make-up and snuck it on when I went to school. I have been wearing my eye makeup the same way since I was a teen…..I have white lashes now; they were pale red as a kid and no one could see my eyes with my very pale skin. I used to say my face looked like it had two peas in a snow storm. I am sure you will encourage your daughter to see the beauty in herself, what ever she does.

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  11. Hahaha! At 4, my son chose dance over karate. Having a theater background, I laughed the first time I had to apply his mascara and Tuxedo Red lipstick before the Spring Dance Recital. It’s true, without it on stage under the lights, your face has no features. Lol.

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  12. My mother was the opposite! She had her nails done and she likes make-up while I had zero interest in them! Now, my daughter (who is just three) fancies lipsticks and face powder (got into it thru a neighbor who sometimes baby sits). It may have skipped a generation!

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    • I like to think of myself as not that type and sometimes I catch myself shaking my head over my daughter’s obsessions with frilly dresses and make up and sparkles, but I realized tonight as I was writing replies to comments on this post that the truth is that I dearly wanted to be like that, to have those things. I just did not have the means! So I guess she is my kid after all! πŸ˜‰

      Liked by 1 person

  13. According to the owner of company where I took my dance classes “the heavy make up is for the stage and is necessary.” My pictures from this time coincided with my awkward stage, your daughter is still in her cutie patootie stage so she should be fine. Stage makeup….that’s what you need to keep reminding yourself. I don’t envy you this one, hang in there.

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  14. Better tighten your seat belt a little more. The Tween and Teen years are quite a ride. For a few years they think you know nothing, and constantly roll their eyes, you are also told that you never let them do anything. Just stick to your guns and follow your gut instinct and you will find a wonderful woman at the end of the ride, Enjoy this stage it will become a great memory for both of you, “Break a leg.” :o)

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  15. Pingback: My Article Read (4-21-2016) – My Daily Musing

  16. At least tell her this: a clean and healthy skin is better than looking pretty with poison on your face.

    Natural beauty is under-appreciated in our media. Tell her natural beauty is invaluable. I had to tell my ex-girlfriend this. She appreciated that I loved her for who she was, not her mask.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. I had friends who were forbidden makeup and tried to do the just-under-the-parents’-radar performance too. Made no sense to me then — and no sense to me still today! Are you SURE they didn’t notice?? That it wasn’t just a gentleman’s agreement of sorts, where they decided “not to notice” provided you kept it low-key enough?

    Good luck adjusting to the young dancer’s new adventures!!

    Liked by 1 person

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