Word + Quiz: cummerbund

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Word + Quiz: cummerbund

: a broad pleated sash worn as formal dress with a tuxedo

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The word cummerbund has appeared in two articles on NYTimes.com in the past year, including on June 12 in the theater review “In ‘Open,’ a Love Story Told by Sleight of Hand” by Elisabeth Vincentelli:

Kristen, the narrator and sole character of Crystal Skillman’s new play “Open,” at the Tank, executes magic tricks because she is the one who needs to believe. The miracle this lovely show pulls out is that by the end, she does — and so do we.

Decked out in a floral-pattern blazer and a top hat, a cummerbund over her T-shirt, Kristen (the wondrous Megan Hill) is a pretty funky magician. When she shuffles an invisible deck of cards, she simply mimes the action and a sound effect helps the audience fill in the blanks. When she juggles invisible balls, the slapping noise they make as they hit her palms is enough to convince us that Ms. Hill is a master of eye-hand coordination.

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