Rosemount Australian Fashion week began in 1996, I was chosen for the very first Collette Dinnigan show.
Sitting on the floor back stage, hair teased and tortured into a crazy sculpture on top of our heads, sharing a violet crumble chocolate bar with super babe Annalese Schubert and clowning around with the gorgeous Sarah O'Hare, waiting excitedly for the show to begin. The buzz in the air is becoming clausterfobic. The feeling of excitement amongst the models is infectious, whilst the dressers , show producers, photographers and hair and make up artists all buzz around you.
Suddenly there is a hush from audience beyond the walls that separate front and backstage, you see the lights dim , then BAM! the music explodes and the show commences. The models are ushered like cattle for the slaughter one by one in a line ready to hit the stage, instructions are firmly relayed to you in a low voice from the shows coordinator "look straight ahead, no hands on hips, walk down the right back up the left...." this is repeated to each girl as we are sent into the void of bright lights on the catwalk. As the music pulses you are, within an instant, strutting out into a sea of faces, some you recognise most are a blur, with-in a couple of seconds you hit the mark at the end of the runway, stop, pose, heart pounding in your ears , flash lights in your eyes, turn and strut off back the way you came. Once backstage again you are rushed to your dresser who is literally pulling the last garments off you and putting the next ones on, you have no time to think, no privacy and all this is happening whilst someone is yelling at you "your supposed to be back on!" Second time out goes as quickly as the first however this time you are a little more prepared. so with a wink and a slight cheeky grin you pose for the cameras at the end of the runway, turn and before you know it your job is done and the show is over.
Left with a feeling of "Umm....what just happened ??" After the 3 hour hair and make up preparations, dealing with stressed out dressers, show organisers and the ramble of photographers fighting to sneak back stage I drive home feeling a slight anti-climax. The peak must have happened whilst I was on the catwalk and I didn't even get a chance to relish it.
Still I felt privileged to be one of the chosen few in Collette Dinnigan's show at Australia's first Rosemount Fashion Week.
Backstage RAFW 96'