Up Close and Personal with Robin Williams

Then the photographer got down to business. He asked the first row to crouch so the people behind us could be seen in the photo.

In the mid-’80s and early ’90s, I worked as a journeyman vocalist, doing gigs that ranged from musical theater, to cabaret, to corporate and family parties, to nightclubs. One of the wildest was being in the chorus of _Rick & Ruby’s Senior Prom,_ an improvisational parody of high school in the ’50s.

Another player and I were assigned to go out and buy condoms to distribute to prom-goers as party favors. The show was at the Great American Music Hall in San Francisco’s Tenderloin district, home of sleazy adult video stores. It was my first and only visit to a store like that.

After the prom, the players gathered for a cast photo. I was placed front row center, and Robin Williams was to my right. I was wearing a low-cut push-up prom dress with a full skirt, and Robin was riffing on his appreciation of it.

Then the photographer got down to business. He asked the first row to crouch so the people behind us could be seen in the photo. I leaned forward, hands on thighs. My dress pushed away from my chest, and my cleavage—such as it is—became artificially enhanced by the posture. Robin unabashedly enjoyed the view, and the photographer had to remind him to look at the camera.

I haven’t had any contact with him since, and I don’t think he’d recognize me if we saw each other again. Not unless I was wearing a low-cut prom dress.

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