Makers & Brothers

Limber Notes

‘Mia’ is the third installation in a short film series called ‘Limber Notes’ by Irish photographer and filmmaker, Linda Brownlee. A passion project of Brownlee’s, the series intimately documents passionate dancers – from the budding to the accomplished.

In the intimate setting of a dance school basement, away from the watchful eye of her teacher, a young pony-tailed girl treats us to a raw, energetic performance. The usual Rococo-esque wigs and multi-coloured dresses so often associated with Irish dancing are replaced by a simple thermal vest and a pair of exercise shorts. Here the focus is on the tools of her trade – a pair of hard-soled shoes and the hard-working legs driving them.

A cd player sitting on the floor provides the music. Silent exchanges between spectator and performer and the panting of the out-of-breath dancer sporadically interrupt its playing. Our view shifts back and forth from direct to indirect as we steal glances from behind a veil of towels that have been hung out to dry. Mia continues to dance, finishing with a firm, confident stance - fists clenched, shoulders back, arms firmly at her side, and her best foot forward. She takes a quick rest before throwing us a wide, satisfied grin.

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