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Inside the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show: hot tickets, a peeved diva

Kanye West performs as model Izabel Goulart walks runway during fashishow. | Jamie McCarthy photos~Getty Images

Kanye West performs as model Izabel Goulart walks the runway during the fashion show. | Jamie McCarthy photos~Getty Images

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Photos: Models strut in Victoria's Secret Fashion Show
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Updated: December 30, 2011 8:08AM

NEW YORK — The first thing you need to know about the crazy successful Victoria’s Secret’s Fashion Show is that it isn’t a fashion show at all. There’s nothing about fashion to it. No pissed-off or pouting girls powering down the runway, modeling haute couture. These dream creatures actually smile. And wink, wave, dance and blow kisses while wearing next-to-nothing lingerie. The VS models are impossibly leggy, rail-skinny yet voluptuously curvy with pretty faces and big, wide smiles. All tall and made taller by 8-inch heels. (Seriously. And it made me hugely nervous for them — and then hugely respectful when not one of them even tottered.)

For women, the show is a powerful motivator to swear off solid foods. For men, well, they can just dream. I’m not sure of the demographics, but last year the show attracted about 9 million viewers in the United States (and it will air in close to 100 countries), and I’m guessing that most are ogling men.

The 2011 show, airing at 9 p.m. Tuesday on WBBM-Channel 2, was taped in early November at the Lexington Avenue Armory in New York before a sold-out crowd of about 2,000 people. The show is such an annual hot ticket that there are men standing outside offering hundreds of dollars for a pink pass.

It took about 30 minutes to tape but will be plumped up to an hour by the time you see it, and there’s plenty to see besides a bevy of winged lingerie models: A smiling Kanye West performs to a giddy crowd, then brings out his touring partner Jay-Z to a giddier crowd and a standing ovation throughout the song. Maroon 5 gets onstage, and in a happy coincidence, frontman Adam Levine happens to be dating Russian model Anne Vyalitsyna, whom he sings “Moves Like Jagger” to and plants a kiss on as she glides down the runway. Rap goddess Nicki Minaj, festooned with a confetti-explosion getup and an annoyed look, also performs.

Of special interest is Skokie’s own Erin Heatherton, 22, a true supermodel angel who earned her wings at last year’s show. “It’s the most exciting day of the year for me,” she said, adding that her parents had flown in to see the show.

Of the 38 angels who strolled, the best-known are Chanel Iman, Miranda Kerr (who had the honor of wearing the $2.5 million “Fantasy Bra” and whose husband, the actor Orlando Bloom, sat on the front row and leaped to his feet every time she walked the runway), Alessandra Ambrosio, Adriana Lima, Lily Aldridge and Lindsey Ellingson.

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