Caroline Quentin,who began her career as a dancer in pantomime, takes a tour backstage to explore the highs and lows of life in the chorus through the decades.
Ensemble players in West End shows or end of the pier revues may have worked as hard as the stars but they never got the glory- instead they got the worst dressing rooms and the costumes that never quite seem to fit.
Digs, dressing rooms and dancing at the right height - Caroline Quentin begins her investigation of life in the chorus line.
Digs, dressing rooms and dancing at the right height - all part of life in the chorus line
The earliest choruses were contrived as a ruse to lure audiences with a glimpse of leg.
They spawned whole armies of girls wanting to sing and dance and by the 1930s, every town had its own pantomime with chorus dancers and singers displaying varying degrees of talent.
But the cramped changing areas and low rates of pay gave rise to an enduring camaraderie among chorus men and women.
Caroline Quentin investigates life in the chorus line.
This week: Digs, dressing rooms and being the right height.