July 22nd, 2009

Superstar - *AFP Hall Of Fame*

“This is one of my 1988 dance recital portraits from The Dancer’s Studio in Dearborn, MI. I wasn’t like the rest of the ballerinas who had been studying dance since birth; I started late so I was put in the “teen beginners” jazz class. I was easily the worst dancer in the school; if you watch the recital video you can see me spinning in the wrong direction and knocking into people. Our teacher, Miss Maryann, picked our costumes and we danced to the song “Hourglass” by Sweet.

I was twelve years old and obviously at that stage where I had no idea what to do with my body. Everything was out of proportion; my glasses were too big, my tights were too big and I could never get my bangs right. I remember a friend at summer camp made me that friendship bracelet and I never took it off so it was really grungy.

The photographer posed us and for me there was really no other option than the jazz hands. I find it kind of amazing that this photo is now one of the top 5 image results when you google “jazz hands.” Like my extreme dorkiness has become a cultural meme. There’s an authenticity to that, dorkiness. There’s no pretense to dorkiness.”

(submitted by Adriana)

241 Responses to “Superstar”

  1. Kimberly says:

    You go, Glen Coco.

  2. Andrew says:

    This girl is awesome!

  3. kathy says:

    it’s not a pad or a tear folks! it is the ‘cotton crotch’ built into the panty hose. This card is sold in stores and it has her comment on the card about it.

  4. Leigh says:

    Too cute! BTW that’s just a tear in her panty hose.

  5. Beck says:

    Its more likely to be a tear in the tights. If it was a pad it be under the tights and less noticeable because of the colour of the tights over it.

  6. DJ K2X says:

    This photo. All these pics on AFP crack me up, but this one I actually clicked-on. It just grabbed my attention. I love how it went from American Apparel to “I thought it was me” to thinking that I really like this photo for 2010 toooooo …what’s that white thing?

    Meant to shine. Classic. Rock on girl!

  7. x says:

    is that her pad showing?

  8. kathleen says:

    I’m glad I’m not the only one who noticed the maxi-pad in this photo…But I think the purple spandex really carries it well.

  9. Brett Mary says:

    Just another summer Saturday night at the Jersey Shore. (Yes, this is where you start fist pumping.)

  10. Jessica says:

    Shine, you crazy diamond, shine.

  11. Hollie says:

    I had that same dance outfit when I was 7 years old!!! Crazy!!!! I still have and my daughter now likes to wear it.

  12. Allison says:

    Oh wow…I’ve been dancing for 17 years (14 of them as a kid, 3 as an adult), and even in my most awkward years, none of my photos looked nearly this bad, but that may have been because it was the 90s by that time and my mom used to practically rip my glasses off my face before my recital photos were taken. For some reason, she thought it was funny to make me take them off before I could find the studio where the individual photos were being taken so I could move around blindly…for shame mom!

    But wow, she’s got some awesome Jazz hands…my male Hip Hop teacher likes to tell us to use “Jazz Hands” alot…perhaps she inspired him? LOL!!

  13. Wendy says:

    Hey, it’s Blossom!

  14. flo says:

    The original Little Miss Sunshine!

  15. Sally2dicks says:

    This is my new avatar.

  16. lindsey says:

    Is that her panty liner sticking out??

  17. Angela says:

    Are those crotchless tights?

  18. Shae says:

    Time out people! Can we just look for a second at the groin region…. on the right side it looks like some liner is showing or something…AWKWARD!

  19. J says:

    What is that on the inside of her right leg?

    • Melissa says:

      LOL…..I was thinking the same thing ! It looks like a sanitary napkin….LOL

      • Poodle says:

        Yes it does, maybe it’s the lining in her tights though.

      • Anniebeans says:

        OMG that was the first thing I noticed too. It’s the flap that attaches to the underwear, only in her case, it’s not attached.

      • jay says:

        I can’t believe I had to read through SO many comments to finally read one about this … totally the most noticeably awkward part about the photo everyone!!

        • MB says:

          That’s the very first think my eye went to in this pic. It sure does look like a maxi pad “wing”. LOL

          • sarah says:

            that’s the FIRST thing i noticed too…

          • susie says:

            I don’t think ‘wings’ had yet to be invented in the 80s.

          • Nita says:

            I cant beleive how many comments about pads i had to read through. anyone who has done tap or ballet dance will know its a part of the stockings, often people dont wear undies when wearing stockings to theres a little light coloured piece of cotton sewen in. when i did competition aerobics it used to sneak out all the time. its not a pad guys, use your brain. if you look closely you will see its circular, not rectangular

    • j_bryon says:

      Let’s hope she didn’t cute herself shaving.

    • Karmann says:

      THANK YOU! I was really hoping someone else said it so I didn’t have to!

    • Dee says:

      The photographer didn’t NOTICE that? It’s the first thing our respective eyes fell on, yet the photographer somehow didn’t see it?

    • Katia says:

      I had to read the comments JUST so I could see if someone else noticed this–I was definitely going to say something if not. It DOES look like her pad slipped!

    • Ann says:

      It’s the “panty” part of her pantyhose. It looks like they were on inside-out…so it REALLY stands out! And the photographer said nothing…for shame

      • Matthew says:

        As a photographer who’s done many photos like this I can tell you that it’s not unthinkable to miss this as we’re so trained to focus on the face and the hands. Also I would hate to tell a 10-11 year old girl, “Your um pantyhose needs to be adjusted.”

  20. Anonymous says:

    The glasses really aren’t her fault at all. In the 80s we had such a fewer selection than today. We were happy when they added color to the frames. Also look up “headgear”. Man, the 80s were a great time but in some ways – we were just screwed on looking “cool”.

  21. Marie says:

    Boy howdy, I need to send in some of my old ballet pictures. I was as gangly and freakish as any of these kids. My torso took two years to catch up to my suddenly freakishly long arms and legs, so I looked like a praying mantis for awhile there.

    And yeah, had those glasses, too. I feel her pain. Though, it sounds as though she’s in no pain at all now, bless her pea-pickin’ heart!

  22. Tricia says:

    I’m sorry waiter but I ordered the large glasses…

  23. Jimbro says:

    Future “Sex in the City” Star

  24. Penny says:


  25. Kim says:

    God help me but this is exactly how I looked at that age. The enormous two-tone glasses, the permed hair, and the jazz outfit. I was in dance classes and recital time was the one time per year that I could get all painted in the face with mom’s blue shadow. Rock on, sister!

  26. kat says:

    Gilda Radner as a child

  27. Shakespeare? says:

    I got a fever…for JAZZ HANDS!

  28. jason says:

    I love the committment to jazz hands….”and 5,6,7,8….jazz hands”

  29. Margaret says:

    Her name is Adriana and she is indeed very pretty now.

  30. Dr. Goodhead says:

    Oh dear……thats all I can say

  31. BigDog says:

    LOL Jazz Hands cocked and ready! 🙂

  32. sweetie pea says:

    The glasses may be what were called Cosmetones (spelling?)–they were advertized as being tinted one color at the top and another at the bottom, so you had instant eye shadow and blush.

    I actually really really wanted a pair at the time, God help me.

  33. trish stratus says:

    The website’s caption is my favorite part. Nothing more true.

  34. alli_emily says:

    i feel like i’ve definitely seen this exact same outfit at american apparel.

  35. Jay says:

    This picture is just made better with time, like a fine wine. Future hall of famer, I think.

  36. alesita says:

    i think my post was deleted, but here i go again… this girl turned out to be something like a comic artist or something like that… she’s actually kind of proud of this pic, since her background imagee on twitter is the same you’re looking at… also she uses it on her blog… she likes to call herself spyriana…

  37. D says:

    The sad thing is that American Apparel would sell this exact outfit today with the big glasses. What the hell happened to them?

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