PARADE OF SPIRITS, LIBERTY LANDS, VOICES: WILHEMINA HALL (talking to béla levin-dorko)
Willa and Béla met in kindergarten. They have always been good friends (Béla actually came home with a ring from Willa, possibly as long as two years ago) and have even done some modelling together (with their sisters, as well).
As we know, Es Meedli debuted in 2014 with Claudia, and was taken on in 2015 by Béla. But both of them had other ideas for 2016, and Claudia had far outgrown the costume. So, in the same way we had begun a search for the “new” Das Mädchen, we began to search for the “new” Es Meedli.
She’s not a waffler, that Willa. Once she was in, we knew she was in. A lot of chutzpah. (I have been on class trips with Willa, and she has walked alone with me through a haunted house when everyone else was scared to go, so I felt pretty confident in her.)
She was a fit, in every way.
Since we knew we were going to have new people taking on the roles of Das Mädchen and Es Meedli this year, wonderful maker Chris Carson designed medals featuring each character, which will now be given every year to whomever takes on the role. Of course he had to fill the backlog, so here are the first three Es Meedli kids wearing their Es Meedli medals.
(You will hear in Willa’s interview her claim that she did not know she had a choice between a brooch and necklace option for her medal… I’m PRETTY sure I was present to hear otherwise, but, she was pretty distracted at the time, being fitted for the costume. I do believe she is still pleased with it.)
Listen to the conversation as it is embedded below, or on Soundcloud.
BLD: Hi my name is Béla, and I am interviewing my friend Willa, on how it felt to be Es Meedli this year.
How… how did it feel inside that costume?
WH: Hard. Very hard.
BLD: Was it heavy?
WH: Kind of… like, in-between/medium.
BLD: If it hurt, where did it hurt?
WH: Right on my waist where the belt-buckle-thingy was.
BLD: Oooooh, ‘cause it’s like, it’s tight?
BLD: Um… after the walk and you took Es Meedli off, did it feel different than before you had it on?
WH: It felt cold, like… the thing, when I put it on, it was warm, so I enjoyed it. But when I took it off, I felt cold.
BLD: How did you feel to get a medal? … Before you got the medal?
BLD: Were you excited, mad, sad?
WH: Not really mad, why would I really be mad? I don’t know what I felt. I felt like, normal. Like, how you would feel when you were just… I don’t know, something (unintelligible). (Exasperated sigh, whispering) Ugh. I can’t…
BLD: Cooooool. So… do you have any questions for me?
BLD: Why did you pick the necklace and not the pin? (Ed. – Those receiving the Das Mädchen or Es Meedli medals were, and will continue to be, able to choose between a brooch backing, or have the medal on a chain.)
WH: I didn’t know there was a pin? (Ed. – Yeeeeeeah she did. She asked for the necklace.)
BLD: Ooooohhhhhhh. Um… cool!