604. The last dance
© Bruce Goodman 6 June 2015

Iris was one of the most renowned ballerinas of her time. Crowds flocked to her performances. Tickets to see her sold on the black market for astronomical prices. Iris could dance with a bunch of clodhoppers and make it look stunning.

Swan Lake, The Nutcracker, Giselle, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, Don Quixote, Romeo and Juliet, Firebird, La Bayadere, Coppelia, La Sylphide, Peter Pan, Le Sacre du Printemps… Iris had danced them all. She had raised the bar. She had driven the standard of production to new heights. There wasn’t a country that hadn’t lauded her with medals.

And now she was to give her final performance. Tickets sold out months ahead. The stage was set. The overture began.

Iris entered. She wandered aimlessly around the stage. She looked at this and that. At one point she spied the audience. She gave a little wave. She meandered a little further here, a little there. She wandered off. The music petered out. No one clapped. Audience members were either angry or in tears. The theatre offered a refund.

It was a spectacular end to a stunning career. She had danced the most profound dance ever.

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