Center Stage


These ballet slipper nails – three traditional pink, one the shade of sultry, heathen independence! – are for one of my oldest and dearest friends, who is one of my oldest and dearest friends precisely because she shares my love of ultra cheesy ’90s ballet movie, Center Stage.  There are, of course, other reasons we’ve been in each other’s lives going on 25 years now (oh. my. lord.) but mostly it’s just Center Stage.  Jodie Sawyer’s shitty turnout and desperation cookies are the glue that holds our friendship together. 😉

Also the completely awesome mini ballet that closes out the film, wherein Jodie, who has spent the movie embroiled in a love triangle with her sexy rebel teacher and a cute classmate, throws off the shackles of spurned and unrequited love and JUST DANCES THE SHIT OUT OF IT!  And somehow pulls off an ON STAGE quick change, going from a pink tights-and-pastels costume to a sparkly red number, complete with blood red lips, elaborately knotted hair ribbons and the devil’s toe shoes, in the span of about 10 seconds. Dance movie magic at its finest!

Ballet Slippers

Ballet Slippers

Up until about 15 years ago when my studio closed its doors, I danced (ballet, jazz, tap, musical theatre, modern, even a little Irish dance and hip hop) very nearly every day of my life. Dance was my life, and despite the fact that I was never going to make it a career, I lived for my classes and my friends and teachers and the all important year-end recital, because I got to strut my stuff and I won a lot of awards, which always made me happy because I was – and am – ultimately a massive showoff!

I tried my feet at all manner of dance, but ballet was my first and always my favourite. Ballet is the core structure around which all other types of dance are formed, and besides, it’s just pretty.

But can we talk about toe shoes, hideous satin-covered instruments of torture that they are? Oh sure, they’re beautiful – look at that colour! – and so dainty – ribbons and satin, oh my! – but truly, they are the worst. Just imagine all your body weight concentrated into two searing hot individual points that burn liquid fire into your feet and that’s what it feels like to wear toe shoes. That professional ballerinas make wearing them look effortless, like of course it’s natural to heave yourself up en pointe pretty much solely through the power of your ankle, is just one of the many, many amazing things dancers can do.

Still, I think at this point in my life, I’d far prefer to watch and marvel and commiserate than join in on the fun. Unless of course there’s an award in it for me! Then maybe we’ll talk. 🙂