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Since leaving The Real World Miami in 1996, Sarah Becker has had some pretty cool jobs. If you watched the show you may remember her stint as a comic book editor. She's also worked at a dot-com and for the Disney Channel. Now she decorates Britney Spears' dressing room. What? They have someone for that?
With a tour that brings more than 100 crew members in 18 buses and 20 trucks full of equipment, they have someone for just about everything.
We hate to admit it, but when we heard what Becker does for a living, visions of demanding riders and Mommie Dearest-esque bitch-outs danced in our heads. Just what is it like working with Britney?
"Britney's great, man. For a 20-year-old, especially. I have a lot of respect for her," says the 31-year-old Becker, somewhat unrevealingly. Becker has been doing tours for years--including Lilith Fair, the Family Values Tour and the Anger Management Tour--and although she's had some contact with the barely clothed one, she says Britney really only has time for her personal assistant and her hairdresser.
"When you're on tour the goal is to be in your own world. That's what they call it--worlds. The lighting people are in lighting world, the carpenter is in carpentry world. I get to be in Sarah world. I'm pretty much the only one allowed in Britney's room all day," she says.
Six days of shows with one day off in between is typical, Becker says. But with Britney's show in Philly on Friday the 28th and one in Atlantic City this Friday, the crew got four days off in between. Where better to be than the cradle of liberty to celebrate the Fourth of July?
"I really like Philadelphia," says the current, if reluctant, L.A. resident. (She's now reading a biography of Benjamin Franklin that she picked up here last week.)
"It's an intimate city. It seems proud. L.A. doesn't have that spirit," she says.
So what did she do when she got here?
"Here's my day: I wake up in the morning, crack open my cases and from around 9:30 in the morning till 4 or 5 I'm basically cranking Bad Brains or the Misfits and decorating. When I get the call that Britney's on her way, I turn that crap off, light the candles and get out of her way."
Becker uses vintage saris with gold and silver thread that a friend brings back from India to transform what is too often a locker room into a "genie bottle."
"I really wanted it to shimmer," she says. "I wanted it to be dynamite." Evidently, she's succeeded.
"The production manager told me, 'You'll do your thing and she'll do hers. She's not gonna say anything, so don't be offended.' But when she saw the room in Vegas she was like, 'Oh, my God!'" Sarah said, before correcting herself and repeating the phrase in Britneyse: "Oh my Gawd!"
Though Becker says she went "kind of anti-consumer" a few years ago and loves living like a "hobo or a gypsy," as far as this tour is concerned she is more of a punk rock or "real rap" kind of girl herself.
"I get a kick out of Britney, though," she says. "Now I'm her fan."