Three months later
Julian and Vicky begin a passionate love affair, with Lermontov forever watching them from the wings. Riddled with jealousy, Lermontov finds fault in everything Julian does, pushing the conductor to breaking point and forcing Julian and Vicky to walk out and resign from the company.
A Music Hall, London’s East End
Six months later, we find Vicky working in a music hall, dancing in a Polish Acrobatic Adagio Act. Also rehearsing are two showgirls and an Egyptian comedic double act, based on Wilson & Keppel, who are leering at Vicky in her skimpy costume. Distressed and humiliated, Vicky runs off stage.
Back in a small London apartment, Julian and Vicky, both artistically unsatisfied, argue; pulled between their love for each other and their passion for their art. After, with Julian asleep in bed, Vicky decides to return to the Ballet Lermontov and leaves with her ballet shoes and suitcase in hand.
As she revives her role in The Red Shoes ballet, she is haunted by the faces of Julian, Lermontov and The Pimp and finds it hard to distinguish between reality and fiction. Fact and fiction, ballet and real life, all begin to blur and eventually Vicky finds herself alone on an empty stage. We hear the sound of the audience chanting for her behind the curtains which builds and morphs to resemble the sound of an approaching train. As the noise gets louder and louder Vicky slowly advances towards the curtains (and her audience). The curtains part and we see the blinding lights of the steam train charging toward Vicky, resulting in catastrophe.
The body of Vicky is eventually surrounded by onlookers and Julian arrives from London, suitcase in hand, just in time to see Vicky take her final breath. Julian removes her red shoes and Vicky dies in his arms, mirroring the final scene of The Red Shoes ballet. Lermontov picks up the pair of shoes, walks towards the audience and holds them up, once more in their spotlight.