Coronavirus update: we are pleased to offer films, events and classes online this winter, while continuing to prioritise the health and wellbeing of the company. Please click here for the latest update on performances and other activities.

Pointe shoes are a dancer's most vital tool. We need your help to keep them 'en pointe'.

Pointe shoes create a beautiful illusion but their journey from factory to stage is lengthy and complex. The shoes are hand-crafted and fitted to each of our 20 female dancers. Each shoe must then be carefully prepared – elastics and ribbons sewn on and some hammering to soften them!

Whilst they're not yet performing in theatres, our dancers are taking class and rehearsing. Wearing their pointe shoes to maintain the strength and suppleness in their feet is vital for a safe and smooth return to the stage.

Male dancers' ballet ‘flats’ are often fitted a size too small, or shrunk by the dyeing process, enduring an uncomfortable warm-up but knowing they will expand when they sweat to ensure the perfect fit.

‘Since coming back from maternity leave, it has been a joy to be dancing again. I particularly missed the feeling of lightness that the pointe shoes give you. Training on pointe is unique, it makes you work a very specific group of muscles that no other footwear would.’

Scottish Ballet Principal Sophie Martin
Scottish Ballet Principal Sophie Martin with her daughter Leona.

‘Having the right support for my feet and ankles helps me to safely gain the strength needed to get back to the level of fitness I had prior to giving birth, which is essential to prepare for the upcoming shows.’

Scottish Ballet Principal Sophie Martin

And it’s not just the professional dancers who rely on their shoes. Our long-standing Associate Programme provides classically-based training for talented boys and girls aged 9-16.

Many Associates rely on a bursary to cover the costs of fees, transport and ballet uniform. You can choose to support the shoes for our aspiring young dancers, whether ballet flats or their first ever pointe shoes.

Thank you for your support.

DONATE TO THE SHOE FUND