Thursday, May 1, 2008

Ballet Shoes and Dance Slippers

I love to dance, but rarely seem to get on the dance floor. I usually wear high heels when I attend a gala event and end up having to forgo dancing because my feet hurt! And as much as I like to dance, I just don't feel that glamourous in flats.

But when these pretty little slippers from the 16th century were in fashion, ladies could take a whirl on the dance floor without worrying about spraining their ankle. This pretty pink dance slipper was a precursor to ballet pointe shoes.

I learned all about ballet shoes at the "The Rise of the Ballet Shoe" an exhibition on at the Bata Shoe Museum until September 28, 2008. On display are ballet shoes from Marie Talioni, who is considered the first French ballet dancer to "block" her slipper in order to be able to dance on pointe as well as shoes from Margot Fonteyn, Karen Kain, Veronica Tennant, Rudolf Nureyev and others. This delightful display is a must see for ballet fans and shoeaholics of all ages.

Bata Shoe Museum
327 Bloor Street West, Toronto