A friend sent me a text today - we have a thing going about Smooth Radio which plays all the old songs from my mis-spent youth. Rusty Springboard was mentioned - for those of you of tender years this was the nickname of the magnificent Dusty Springfield. " I only wanna be with you" was playing, which, if memory serves me right, was her solo breakthrough song.
I accept I may be extremely naive, but I remember being devastated to hear she was gay. The other major disappointment in my life was to hear that Michael Flatley - he of the original River Dance - was actually American. And after me watching the video all those times of the performance in Dublin with the lovely Jean Butler. Strangely, she is related to another friend of mine.
He tells the story of her growing up winning prizes for the soft shoe dancing as opposed to the clickety-clack of the hard shoes, at which, apparently, she never really excelled. When she went for the audition she was asked to do both - and to start with the hard shoes. After a few moments she said " I'll be doing the soft shoes first " and apparently blew everyone away to such an extent they never bothered to ask her for the other discipline.
They hired her on the spot.
And gave her extra lessons.