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San Francisco principal in Vogue.

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WARNING-- very ephemeral content.

Yuan Yuan Tan is featured in an article in the current (April) Vogue magazine. It isn’t a profile as such—it is part of “The Shape Issue” which Vogue runs occasionally. Elizabeth Kaye, who wrote the article, is also the author, along with Clive Barnes, of “American Ballet Theatre, a Twenty-Five Year Retrospective”, a book that is on one of my shelves. Not sure if it is the same person—if so, she is writing down (WAY down) for the apparently ballet deprived Vogue reader.

In the first two short paragraphs she says, “these days divas are as passe as their trailing capes and turbans” and calls the San Francisco Ballet, where Ms. Tan is a principal dancer, “the best of the regional companies.”

We also find out that Ms. Tan is not anorexic, that her favorite food is octopus and chicken feet, that she dances so beautifully because she misses her native China and that Sharon Stone and Chelsea Clinton have been in the audience of her performances.

There is a great picture of her as Odette being watched closely by Vadim Solomakha, in a studio. Another smaller photo is in front of a San Francisco landmark. She looks great in red and white and is running in stiletto-heeled pumps which seems like a dangerous thing for a working ballerina to do.

I would imagine that most people buy Vogue for the same reason that most people buy Playboy—for the pictures and this issue a good one for that. The shape issue has the usual insanity and inanity that must accompany fashion coverage.

“Curvy” (which in Vogue means overweight) is exemplified by Mia Tyler (Steve’s daughter) who apparently is a size 12. Since last year the "curvy” woman was uber-model Gisele Bundchen, this might be considered progress. “Short” is a 5’ 6” model. “Athletic” includes Jennifer Aniston and Michelle Rodriguez, but Serena Williams, one of the most athletically gifted women in the world, is categorized as curvy. Which she is, of course.

Not the worst way to waste a hour, however.

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Originally posted by GWTW

What do you mean by chicken feet? How do you eat them? :(

From the article in Vogue: "You know what are my favorite foods? Octopus and chicken feet" She details her way of preparing them, as she might for dinner: Boil until soft, steam until moist and flavorful, saute in traditioinal Shanghai manner with soy sauce, white pepper and sugar.


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One thing you can always count on in profiles of actresses and dancers,especially those noted for their thinness, is some kind of assurance, phrased obliquely or straightforwardly, that the lady does not have an eating disorder. (I do not mean to imply anything in relation to Tan – this observation is meant generally.) Usually it's done this way: "At lunch, Susie Starlet eagerly wolfed down her French fries, strawberry sundae, and double cheeseburger. 'I eat anything,' she tells me cheerfully" and so forth.

As far as I can tell, "curvy" as applied to models means "skinny with disproportionately large breasts and lips puffed like a sectional sofa."

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Sorry for the culturally challenged question about the chicken feet.

After browsing through this issue of Vogue, I must say I found no real words of wisdom for the uber-short (such as myself:D ). I can only assume that all the women featured as 'short' are such fantastic dressers that they don't look short. :)

Yuan Yuan Tan looked fabulous in the (ballet) studio shot, though I wouldn't have guessed that was her Swan Lake costume without the caption.

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I'm not sure that the numbers necessarily make a difference (and it's routine in profiles of male athletes and dancers, also).

As for negative comparisons, all the girls have to do is look at the photographs throughout the magazine, unfortunately.

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