We believe that dancing is fundamentally about core body movement and the connection between partners and with the music.
Right from the start, we focus on essential technique as we believe it is fundamental to gaining competence and enjoying dancing, not an optional extra to be “bolted on”, later. We will encourage you to focus on the music and your partner and really feel the movement of the dance. This sets you free from remembering complex patterns and sequences and builds the foundations of improvisation.
We find this approach gets you dancing better, sooner, and enjoying it more.
Eleanor has been swing dancing since 1999 and teaching since 2004. Her repertoire includes Balboa, Lindy Hop, and Blues. She is also learning Argentine Tango, Tap, and Ballroom and Latin dances. When she has time, she plays the piano (badly) and sings (hopefully not so badly).
About Swing Dancing
Lindy Hop is a partner dance that evolved in Harlem, New York City in the 1920s and 1930s, danced to the jazz music of the time. Lindy was a fusion or many dances popular during it’s development, possibly including the Breakaway, the Charleston, the Texas Tommy and the Hop. A dancer of the time, ‘Shorty’ George Snowden is said to have coined the term ‘Lindy Hop’ after Lindbergh’s solo non-stop flight from New York to Paris in which he “hopped” the Atlantic in 1927. Headlines in the newspapers read “Lindy Hops the Atlantic”.
There is more information about Lindy Hop on Wikipedia
The “Balboa Shuffle” began perhaps as early as 1915 and gained in popularity in the 1930s and 1940s in the ballrooms of the Balboa Peninsular in Orange County, Southern California. It is danced primarily in close embrace, and is led with a full body connection. The art of Balboa is in the subtle communication between partners, including weight shifts, which most viewers cannot see. As a result, Balboa is considered more of a “dancer’s dance” than a “spectator’s dance”. Its exact origins are a little obscure, especially as many of the original Balboa dancers are no longer with us.
Here is a fun video made by Balboa dancers in Slovenia which gives a flavour of the dance.
Here is an in-depth history of Balboa presented by Peter Loggins at the Tiny Balboa festival in 2008
There is more information about Balboa on Wikipedia