Last minute

Pointe Shoes

It’s been a very long day and it’s tempting to fall into bed without a daily note. But that’s a slippery slope and it’s too early in the piece to be making excuses. So here’s a run down.

Ballet girl

The Ballerina’s show opened tonight. She’s been rehearsing since May last year, intensely for the last two weeks.

She pretty much takes care of herself these days; own hair and makeup, snacks packed, tape on the bunions. But I still sew the ribbons and elastics on her shoes.

For this show we purchased four pairs of pointe slippers. They’ve been sitting in a bag for six weeks, waiting for me to attach their fastenings. I hate this job and I put it off. Till the last minute. Always.

After a few blunt hints from The Ballerina on the weekend I finally pulled out the sewing box, finishing the last pair on Tuesday night. Actually it was the wee hours of Wednesday morning.

Then this happened.

Red shoes

For one of her roles, the Russian Princess, The Ballerina wears red shoes. The costume department took a pair I’d already ribboned and elasticised and spray painted them ruby. Only the elastic is intended to stay its original skin tone to remain invisible. Red elastic could not go on stage.

So we went into the theatre early today to collect the offending shoes, planning to stay close to the venue for this eleventh-hour alteration. Eyes bleary and head heavy after the previous night’s carousing, I hunted for a park in nearby West End, where all the construction workers park their utes. Traffic conspired. We got stuck behind a van trying to turn right into Boundary Street. Then we spotted a park and turned into a narrow backstreet to double back, now finding ourselves trapped behind a rubbish truck which emptied a dozen wheelie bins before we could pass.

Eventually, with 30 minutes till her dress-rehearsal call time, The Ballerina and I found ourselves in a West End cafe removing the red and attaching fresh beige. We worked in tandem. She unpicked and I tacked, under the curious gaze of handsome Greek boys serving coffee and passionfruit bread.

Then we jumped back in the car and dodged tow trucks and buses and learner drivers practising reverse parks to make it to the theatre only 15 minutes late.

That’s not bad.

Tonight, after the show, The Ballerina told me the costume department finished her Russian Princess’  bodice 15 minutes before she went on stage.

Now that’s last minute.

Angela Bensted Bw 1x1
Angela Bensted is a Brisbane-based freelance writer who likes to listen first and struggle with syntax later. She pitches stories to magazines and helps businesses produce compelling copy for print and online.
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