Tony Smith, an operating room assistant working at Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital, wore a tutu at work last summer to grant the wish of a young patient who was about to undergo surgery. Wearing tutu every Tuesday at work has since become a tradition at the hospital.
It only took a matter of a week for a picture of Smith wearing the tutu become viral online. Today, doctors, nurses, technicians, receptionists and even the hospital’s resident dog wear their tutus every Tuesday as they attend to patients.
Smith told The Associated Press he did not expect to create such a big impact. When he wore the tutu last summer, it was all about making the patient comfortable.
“Having me put on the tutu made her feel better. I never knew I would have that much impact. I didn’t expect it to go viral,” Smith said.
“It’s for the patients. Just seeing you in a tutu brightens their day, and it can keep them from thinking about what’s really going on.”
Parents and patients appreciate the effort.
“Coming in and seeing everyone in tutus is quite amusing,” Laurel Barnett, a parent to one of the patients, said.
“It’s not what you expected to see. It does give children a sense of relief that these people are not only here to help them, but there to have fun as well. It kind of takes their mind off of things,” she said.
Crisis in Tutu At Opera Philadelphia
Meanwhile, there is a crisis for hand-stitched tutus at the Opera Philadelphia. Staff at the opera house said tailors and seamstresses of hand-sewn tutus are retiring, and the young fashion graduates do not know how to sew.
“Opera houses in smaller cities are in a terrible situation. And it’s about to get worse because many older tailors and seamstresses are nearing retirement,” Rainer Gawenda, head of costumes at Bühnenservice Berlin told Newsweek.
Creators of hand-stitched tutus are unsung heroes of the opera, according to Newsweek.
“A good opera house seamstress has the same skills as a surgeon. It’s just that she’s lower-paid,” Opera Philadelphia’s costume director Millie Hiibel said.
“Fashion colleges don’t teach students how to sew; they just teach them to be designers. I get applicants who don’t even know how to sew on a button,” Hiibel lamented.
Also read: NJ Transit Proposes 9 Percent Fare Hike
You might be interested: Princess Diana’s Will Available For Personal Use