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My Stage Shoes This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

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They are my character shoes. I bought them for a play that I was in back in the eighth grade. I remember going with my mom to find them at a special shoe store miles from my house because I NEEDED them for the show. I tried on a few pairs, but these were perfect. Their tan leather was shiny and spotless then. They had a small, versatile heel and an ankle strap with a silver buckle. They made a light *tap tap tap* across the hard floor. The salesperson assured my mother that the neutral color would go with any costume in case I decided to pursue theatre in years to come.

Yes, I NEEDED those shoes.

I wore the new materials in by wearing them around the house. Dancing, dusting, it didn't matter. I wore those shoes for months. I didn't take them off until the closing night of "Little Women". I believed that I had the best shoes of the whole cast. Since then, I've worn them for six other plays. They are my "Show Shoes". Stepping into them, I feel unstoppable on stage. Wearing those shoes, I was a sister, a mother, a seamstress, a nurse, a gossip, and a friend, not to mention a singer, dancer, and a confident actress. Those wonderful tan leather shoes belong under bright spot lights.

I am now going into my senior year of high school and they hardly fit anymore. The leather is scuffed along the toe. The once perfect soles show signs of wear in the heels. The straps have stretched and the buckles have scratches on them. There are imprints of various costume pieces on the sides from being stuffed in a box with them for days. The glue on the sole is starting to fall apart. I know in the back of my mind that I will need to buy a new pair. But I will still keep these shoes, even if it’s only to dream of past plays or to smell the soft leather. My Stage Shoes will be placed in my closet as memories of the people I have portrayed, the fun I’ve had onstage, and how I’ve grown as an actress since that very first play.

Yes. I needed those shoes.





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