Amber, 1983, 57 mins
NOTE: The film aspect ratio of this film is 4:3. We have become aware that on some screens it is appearing as 16:9 (stretched). If this happens, clicking full screen should sort the problem - and it keeps to 4:3 when returning to a small screen.
At the time, North Shields children would get asked by their teachers, 'You'll never work, so what will you do?' The dancing school became a place for aspiration; a meeting ground between dreams and realities. For photographer Sirkka-Liisa Konttinen it became a place to explore mother-daughter relationships. She'd first photographed dancing schools for Amber's 1974 River Project. The group had been introduced to the Connell-Brown dancing school in North Shields as they worked on the 1980 film Tyne Lives. Amber started off thinking about a straight documentary, but using Sirkka's images and her conversations with the mothers and daughters it became a drama. Sirkka carried on documenting the dancing school after the film, eventually producing the book and exhibition Step by Step.
Not yet available on DVD
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