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Exclusive Photo Coverage: Vasthy Mompoint Earns the Legacy Robe for THE PROM!

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THE PROM officially opened last night, November 15, at the Longacre Theatre. Before the curtain went up, the company took a moment to celebrate the recipient of the Legacy Robe- Vasthy Mompoint!

Vasthy's Broadway credits include: Good Vibrations, Hot Feet, Mary Poppins, Soul Doctor, Ghost, Rocky, SpongeBob SquarePants. Film: Mysteries of Laura, The Detour, Better off Single and LEA.

Following the tradition, the Robe recipient circles the stage three times while cast members reach out and touch the Robe for good luck. The recipient of the Robe then visits each dressing room to "bless" the show. A decorative panel representing their show is then sewn onto the Robe, which is passed on to a recipient in the next chorus musical that opens.

This ritual began in 1950 when Bill Bradley, a Chorus member of Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, persuaded fellow Chorus member Florence Baum to give him her dressing gown. As a lark, he sent it to a friend, Arthur Partington, a Call Me Madam Chorus member, on opening night, telling him it had been worn by all the Ziegfeld beauties. Arthur added a rose from star Ethel Merman's gown and sent it to a chorus member on the next opening night of Guys and Dolls.

It was then passed from show to show and was often presented to a friend of the previous recipient or awarded to a chorus member based on popularity. Through the decades, the passing of the Robe became a specific ceremony with official rules stating how it is to be presented, worn and paraded on stage. Three retired Robes are at the Lincoln Center Library of the Performing Arts; there are also Robes at the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, DC, and at the Museum of the City of New York. All others are with Actors' Equity.

Photo Credit: Walter McBride

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From This Author Walter McBride