Miss XL

Virginia Baxter: Julie-Anne Long, Miss XL

Julie-Anne Long, Miss XL

Julie-Anne Long, Miss XL

For a couple of years, Julie-Anne Long has been doing the freelance dance, fleeting in shorts, flitting in and out on the national one-off circuit. We had the pleasure of catching her as she lit on an occasional season with One Extra, in collaborations with the likes of Wendy Houstoun and Michael Whaites.

For those who know the work of this idiosyncratic and stylish dance artist, the chance to see 3 versions of Julie-Anne Long in one extended outing this April, will be irresistible. Those who haven’t caught her elegant and witty act should take note.

Not one to elaborate overly on her oeuvre, Ms. Long has begun working on her PhD and now thankfully comes clean in this month’s Ausdance magazine to reveal that her style “is grounded in the aesthetics of transgression, inversion and the grotesque.“ and that her concerns in movement “veer towards the minuscule, the pedestrian, qualities of dance the audience must scan for.”

The cover girl goes on in a probing interview with herself to spill even more beans, defining her work as “Intimate and theatrical, upfront and introspective, juxtaposing grand theatrical gestures with unnerving intimacy and pseudo familiarity, slipping between genres, moods, shifting methods and changing frames of reference” (not to mention costumes!)

You will never see anything quite like Miss XL a contemporary burlesque in which a dancer transforms from demented ice cream vendor (Mrs Whippy) to chronicler of clefts (Cleavage) to the ultimate introvert (The Leisure Mistress). “Never again will I be young and emerging,” says Julie-Anne Long “I find myself in a rather unfashionable spot for a dancer. I’m a submerging artist,” which no-one who has ever seen her work believes for a second.”

RealTime issue #47 Feb-March 2002 pg. 36

© Virginia Baxter; for permission to reproduce apply to realtime@realtimearts.net

1 February 2002
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