“Samantha who dreams of one day being a prima ballerina and preforming in a Russian ballet. The Enchanted Key will unlock all her dreams…”
Doll artist Cristy Stone’s inspiration for her first 1/4 size girl Samantha was her young niece, also named Samantha, who is fascinated by the beauty of ballet and would like to become a dancer. Work on the doll began last November. According to Cristy, the head was the easiest part to sculpt, but the body proved more difficult. The first body was eventually scrapped, and a new body created. The second body is designed to be able to hold ballet positions. Samantha has jointed toes and will come with toe shoes. Cristy designed two face-ups, one pale and one ruddy, and customers may choose their preferred look. Additionally, each doll will come with an “enchanted key”. Below is Samantha’s story…
Samantha, The Enchanted Ballerina
by “Kris Starbird”
Outside the snow fell in huge flakes, typical of a Russian winter night. But the small, rustic cabin situated on the outskirts of St. Petersburg was cozy with the warmth of the fire in the hearth. The old man sighed and stepped back to admire his finished work. He was a sculptor by trade but was rather unknown despite his extraordinary talent. The townspeople whispered that he must have sold his soul since he was able to breathe life into his sculptures. It was because of this ability that the theater director of the Imperial Mariinsky Ballet, at the bequest of a wealthy but anonymous patron, had commissioned him to create the statue who would be showcased in the lobby of the theater. Standing before him was a slender ballerina en pointe. He regarded his work once again, taking in her delicate beauty. He knew that this was to be his greatest work from the moment that his hands took on a life of their own. She had a hauntingly beautiful but heartbreakingly sad face. She was to be dressed as Odette as a tribute to the new ballet that was gracing the stage of the Imperial Mariinsky Theatre.
During the time that he was bringing her to life, he realized he’d fallen in love with his creation. He suspected that this was to be his last work as the cold Russian winters had taken their toll on his health. His days were numbered so he was grateful that she would live on and grant him a small piece of immortality. In spite of his infatuation, he knew that she was not to be his and that it would be unfair to awaken her to the touch of a dying old man. So he left her in her frozen state. But he dreamed that someday she would achieve what she was made for which was to be a prima ballerina. The old man allowed himself a bit of self-indulgence as he gazed into the fire. He envisioned her encrusted in a jeweled tutu performing a pirouette on the stage, her tiny feet flashing in pink satin toe shoes. She would be the world’s greatest prima ballerina. The old man shook his head to clear his thoughts and smiled a small smile. Yes, she was to be his legacy.
But how was he to achieve his dream for her? He felt his thoughts rumble about in his mind and it suddenly came to him. A enchanted key! He turned her around and added a small keyhole that was hidden in her back. He rustled through his drawers until he found an intricate key which he place upon a thin golden chain around her neck and hid in the neck of her bodice. As he worked on this task, he mumbled words under his breath. Someday, someone would fall so in love with her that he would solve the riddle of her existence. The old man smile again, satisfied with his workings. Little did he know that not only had he bestowed the possibility of life to her, but he had awakened her mind with the first touch of the key.
The next day, the director arrived to take possession of the young ballerina. She had a special place in the lobby of the theater, directly across from the bust of Empress Maria Alexandrovna, wife of Tsar Alexander II for whom the theater was named. The ballerina was an instant sensation. Patrons marveled at how lifelike she appeared and how her eyes seemed to follow their every move. It would have shocked them to know that was indeed the truth. While they gazed at her, she gazed back. Most were struck by the sadness of her expression and wondered what she could be thinking. Many men fell in love with her but no one ever guessed the old sculptor’s puzzle. She remained the talk of St. Petersburg and brought that fleeting fame to the old sculptor which allowed him to live out the remainder of his days in relative comfort. He wondered if he should impart the ballerina’s secret before he died, but his premonition of his life slipping quickly away was a reality. The ballerina’s secret died with him. So she remained frozen and could only watch the wealthy patrons on their way in to lose themselves in the ballet, all the while dreaming that it was her that they were coming to see.
Years passed and still the young ballerina stood en pointe, always standing gracefully on her toes. Her once sparkling tutu began to fade with gathered dust and she began to be a bit tattered looking. The fascination with her lessened and soon she became just another sculpture gracing the lobby of the glittering theater. It seemed as though the old sculptor’s wish for her would never come to fruition.
One cold winter’s evening, a young count who had developed a love for the ballet, wandered through the lobby while waiting for that night’s performance to begin. His eyes landed on the young ballerina and he noticed that she appeared to be watching him. Like others before him, he was stuck by the sadness on her face and wished he could read her thoughts. Throughout the performance, his thoughts were on the sculpture and imagined how she would look floating across the stage. She became his obsession and he spent most of his evenings standing in front of her wishing that she were real. Weeks passed and he thought of nothing but the young ballerina. One evening, which he was in his usual position gazing up at her, he noticed something shimmering on her neck. He looked around furtively to see if anyone was watching him. But the ballet attendees were in small clusters, engaging in conversation about the anticipation of that evening’s ballet. He reached up to touch her neck and discovered the thin gold chain. As he pulled on it, he felt a catch as though something had caught on her bodice. He tugged a bit harder and the key flashed into his sight. Why would a statue be wearing a key, he wondered. He palmed the key and shoved it into his pocket. It gave him some comfort to have what felt like a small piece of her with him. But his thoughts kept returning to the key in his pocket and wondered what it unlocked.
On the following evenings, he searched near the ballerina, looking for something that the key would fit. But he found nothing. He became more and more frustrated, thinking that perhaps the key was just a practical joke that someone had played by placing a key to nothing around the ballerina’s neck. He began to realize that as long as he was infatuated with her, he would never have a full life. He decided that he needed to say his goodbyes to the ballerina and move forward with his life, no matter how sad he felt with his decision.
When he arrived at the theater the next night, he gazed into her eyes as he had done so many other nights. He thought that her sadness had deepened even though he realized that this wasn’t possible. After all, she was just a sculpture no matter how lifelike she appeared. But he felt an overwhelming sadness of his own and felt the need to comfort her in some way. He apologized to her for deserting her and explained why he felt the need to leave St. Petersburg. He decided to place a small kiss on her cheek and put his arm around her neck to maintain his balance. He softly kissed her cheek while tears glistened in his eyes. As he removed his arm from around her neck, his hand slid down her back and he felt a small indention. He wondered why there would be a flaw on this flawless sculpture. How had her creator left her less than perfect? He squeezed behind the ballerina to see what it could be and saw that it was a keyhole! He slid the key out of his pocket and gently slid it into place. He turned the key and stepped back. There was a blinding flash of light and there stood the ballerina, no longer en pointe but with roses in her cheeks. A tear slid down her cheek and she wrapped her arms around the young count’s neck thanking him for freeing her. He hugged her tightly and professed his love for her. The sadness lifted from her face and she told him that she had dreamed of hearing that from the first time that she saw him as she was in love with him as well.
Ironically, the young count was the descendant of the anonymous patron who had commissioned the ballerina from the old sculptor. Life can be funny that way.
That night the old sculptor’s wish for her came true. She went on to achieve her dream of being a prima ballerina and enthralling everyone who came to see her dance. She also found her true love and became a countess when she became the young count’s wife. They lived a long, happy life together and all their dreams came true.
From Cristy’s making-of thread on the doll forum the Resin Cafe, in the Artist Doll section (Membership required).
Total height – 18″ or 45cm
Head 8.2″ will wear JPOP size 7/8 or Xtremedoll Mohair 8/9
Bust – 8″ or 20cm
Feet – 2 1/4 inch or 6.35cm
Hip – 8 ” or 20cm
Leg Length – 8″ or 20cm (inseam)
Shoulder width 3 1/2′ OR 9cm
Waist 6.5″ or 16cm