Swing
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Perhaps the most uniquely American of all dances, the Swing brings forth a buoyant carefree movement. It's one of the dances that becomes contagious.

History:

The Lindy (Swing) picked up where Charleston left off. It had "swing-outs", "breakaways" and "shine-steps". With the birth of "Swing" music in the mid 1930's the Lindy climbed the social ladder. In August of 1935, at the Palomar Ballroom, bandleader Benny Goodman played a Fletcher Henderson arrangement of "Stompin' at the Savoy". The rest, as they say, is history. The dance craze swept the nation, and depending on where you lived, it was the Jitterbug, the Lindy Hop or the Swing. Since those days, each successive generation has "discovered" the fun of Swing. this most uniquely American dance is enjoyed all over the world.

Music:

Swing, Jitterbug, Jive, Shag, Lindy Hop, etc are normally written in 2/4 or 4/4 time with the musical accents occurring on the second or second and fourth beats of a measure. Swing includes two general rhythms: Swing Rhythm - 1, 2, 3 & 4, 5 & 6 or Lindy Rhythm - 1, 2, 3 & 4, 5, 6, 7 & 8. Swing may be danced to a wide variety of music from Big Band to Country to Blues.

Characteristics:

A rock step followed by two side steps or two triple steps (chasses) done to lively music is the fundamental pattern for this dance.

Teaching Elements:

  • Basics--Turns and position changes
  • Open Breaks--Fingertip lead and follow; arm control
  • Maneuverability--Learn how to move comfortably in all directions
  • Footwork--Weight changes in rotation
  • Swing Motion and Accents--Stress the use of beats to steps and body to music
  • Various Timings--Single, double, and triple timing as well as Lindy timing to adjust to different music tempos
  • Compare/Contrast--Lindy Hop, West Coast Swing, Fox Trot

Swing songs and artists include

  • In The Mood - Glenn Miller
  • Rock Around the Clock - Bill Haley and the Comets
  • Start Me Up - The Rolling Stones
  • Jump, Jive, An' Wail - Louis Prima or the Brian Setzer Orchestra

Coming Soon:  Swing Video Clips

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