Your friends the stars – 4
By adding dancing to her TV appearances, singer Eve Boswell cornered her own bit of the 1954 TV limelight. In fact the dancing was not new to Eve. As a young girl going round the European circuses with her parents — a circus act — she pirouetted and hand-balanced as though born to it. As indeed she had been.
But her voice took on a more dominant role in her grown-up career — until the summer before last, when the dancing feet appealed for attention again. She was in a summer show at Blackpool, and at rehearsal one day was watching the show’s corps de ballet practising. The tune and the movement took her feet into a number of spins and movements, as she waited in the wings. Seeing this, the ballet master challenged Eve to do the same high jinks with the corps de ballet. Doing so. Eve found herself feeling very much at home. So she took a refresher course in dancing.
Hungary is Eve Boswell’s native land, though she was discovered in South Africa, largely as a radio singer. She worked there for some years, and married there at the age of eighteen. Before the war, her parents appeared in their comedy-instrumentalist circus act on TV at Alexandra Palace. Eve, even smaller than now, was with them and passed all but unnoticed.
Circus work took her right across South Africa in circus trains and in a caravan home. When her caravan was parked for the night in a railway siding, a sudden storm struck down some overhead electric cables, which fell on the circus train and set it on fire. Lions and tigers escaped, and one tiger looked in on Eve as he passed by her caravan door. A great deal was lost in the fire, but Eve and her home on wheels escaped. Now she lives in London, in a flat behind the BBC, and goes down to the country to see her young son at his prep school.