Posy Fossil

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Posy Fossil
Born September
Education Children's Academy of Dancing and Stage Training
Occupation Dancer
Relatives Pauline (sister by adoption)
Petrova (sister by adoption)
Sylvia Brown (parent by adoption)
Unknown mother (ballerina)

Posy Fossil is a character in the book Ballet Shoes and its two television adaptations. She was adopted by Professor Matthew Brown, called Gum, who took her from her mother, the dancer. She is portrayed by Sarah Prince (in 1975 adaption) and by Lucy Boynton (in 2007 adaptation). She was created by Noel Streatfeild in 1936.

Posy's story[edit]

Posy's father died shortly after her birth, and her young mother, who was a dancer, didn't have time for a baby. So she was adopted by Professor Matthew Brown, called Gum. Posy grew up in London, England. As the youngest, she is boisterous and often self-centred; Pauline and Petrova often feel they have to 'sit' on her in order to teach her a little bit of humility but this only has a limited effect. What her sisters see as arrogance is to a large extent Posy's confidence in her extraordinary ability as a dancer (apparent from a very young age). She also has a great talent for mimicry that often helps in times of stress. Posy is also the inheritor of the titular ballet shoes, a parting gift from her birth mother. Of the three sisters she is perhaps the most gifted and dedicated to her art.

She was only six when she became a student at the Children's Academy of Dancing and Stage Training. Posy was in the first class, but due to her talent for dance, she became a student of Madame Fidolia, the headmistress of the school. Under her teachings, Posy's talent increases and soon became the best dancer in the school, and it seems she is destined be a prima ballerina when she grew up. Unlike Pauline and Petrova, she was rarely concerned about their lack of funds, convinced there would always be enough money to allow her to continue dancing. Her drive to dance often made her insensitive to other people's problems. For instance, when Madame Fidolia had a stroke Posy stated that she wasn't as worried about the wellbeing of her teacher as about who was going to teach her now. No longer being under the instruction of the accomplished professor, she went to Manoff, a famous ballet dancer, and asked to take her on as a pupil. At first he laughed and was not convinced of her capabilities but soon changed his mind when he saw her perform.

At the end of the book, Posy is accepted as a pupil by Manoff and moves to Prague in (what was then known as) Czechoslovakia in order to study with him, accompanied by Nana. In later books, she is said to have moved to America at the outbreak of the Second World War and was doing background dance work in Hollywood's films under the pseudonym of 'Posina'. However kept her aim of being a full-time ballerina, and in the book Apple Bough (the final story of Streatfeild's to feature Madame Fidolia's dance academy), secondary character Ethel Forum refers to Posy Fossil as 'the greatest dancer in the world'.

Portrayals[edit]