Lindy Hop Dance Forum Archive for May
1999May, 1999 Forum
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Archive of Dance Forum Articles From May, 1999

This is the archive of DANCE FORUM articles which appeared during May, 1999

This is the place to review and savor all of those interesting articles written by our erudite readers.

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  1. Four Interesting Websites
  2. Swing at Virginia Tech (Kalimar Maia)
  3. Decorators Wanted for the USO Dance (Jenny Manlove)
  4. Note From Ellen Werther (Ellen Werther)
  5. Sailor, Swing Me! (Janice Wilson)
  6. Cool Swing Tour Website (Lynn McCune)
  7. Kay Boller (Sue Fedor)
  8. Swing Dance Demos Janice Saylor
  9. Fidgety Feet Now Teaching Tricia Reneau
  10. More Hair Classes on May 22 and May 23 Chris Santarlas
  11. Update on Forest Glen Sue Fedor
  12. Two passes to Swing on a Star Tuan Tranh
  13. Detroit Update (Stuart Feldman)
  14. End of Zones (Greg at Zones)
  15. Mickey Sherman's Website (Mickey Sherman)
  16. Here's why... (Tom and Robin Cunningham)
  17. African Dance (Anna Duncan)
  18. Erik and Sylvia Engagement (Jen Hollywood)
  19. Wear Insoles (Lisa Nguyen)
  20. Dance Etiquette (Dan Daley)
  21. Grey Pentax 260mm automatic camera, LOST at USO (Cullen Kowalski)
  22. Tom and Jennifer? (Sue Fedor)
  23. Swing in Kansas City (Joe Ketcherside)
  24. Swing in Florida (Joe Chapman)

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Four Interesting Websites

The first belongs to Sarah Williams (of the formerly busted knee fame) she's redesigned her site and it looks spectacular.

The second is Spare Change Magazine, and belongs to Laurie and Katti (in addition to a couple of other friends). Though it's not strictly swing, it is of interest to swingers, because of music reviews and some of the articles. This month there are reviews of the Jive Aces show and the J Street Jumpers CD; next month they'll be more, including, Indigo Swing (a review of the show AND the yet to be released new album) and the Rockabilly Weekender in Las Vegas.

www.sparechangemagazine .com

Third, Elizabeth Engel brought this very interesting site to our attention:


Fourth, we had a note from Gene Confrey who has a website with some very interesting historical photos of Glen Echo:


So, enjoy yourself as you check out these websites!

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Swing at Virginia Tech
From: Kalimar Maia

Howdy folks,
Here in Blacksburg VA, we are trying to build a swing scene (with the help of the Southwest Virginia Swing Dance Society). Chris Etcher, Jeff Booth and Nina were recently here teaching us some neat Lindy, Shag and Balboa (hopefully we'll have some pictures to send you!!!). Things are still slow but hopefully will eventually pick-up. Anyway, our club at Virginia Tech is Solely Swing.

There's usually some sort of dancing going on every weekend, with C.D.s playing or even live bands. That web address has a fairly current schedule.

I'm currently reading Norma Miller's book and must agree, it'swonderful. They happened to have it at our library. The review on your site was a pleasant suprise considering this book IS the only thing on Swing at the University.

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Decorators Wanted for the USO Dance
From: Jenny Manlove

Hi Folks:
Help decorate for the USO dance and get into both dances for free. We need decorators for the following time slots: (a) 10-12; and (b) 12-2 Please send me an email if you'd like to help out.

Rick Carter is coordinating volunteers during the dance. A number of people signed up last night, but there are still some times available. You can either sign up at Saturday night's dance or call Rick: 202-726-3972

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Note From Ellen Werther
From: Ellen Werther

As most of you have heard by now Cameron's mom died last week. I urge all to take a few minutes to send him a card or give him a call (if you haven't already). I remember when my mom died how much the thoughts of my friends meant to me. Nothing can take away the pain but the support of friends certainly makes the pain bearable.

On a happier note, my son gave me the new Louis Jordan 2-cd set for my birthday. I am going to let Bill Lehman borrow it to review--it's his job--but I have just got to say, IT IS A+ MARVELOUS. The cd's cover Jordan's career from the late 30s to the early 50s--everything from Barnacle Bill and Doug the Jitterbug to Choo Choo Ch'Boogie and my all time favorite Caledonia. The liner notes are like a small book, with an incredible amount of information.

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Sailor, Swing Me!
From: Janice Wilson

Hey y'all,
Here's information as to how one can purchase tickets for Sailor, Swing Me! The event is billed as "The Final Reckoning", a battle of the bands between George Gee and His Make Believe Ballroom versus The Bill Elliott Orchestra. This Battle will take place on the USS Intrepid, making this event NYC's first USO theme Swing event. Sailor, Swing Me! happens July 11, 1999, 9:00PM-1:00AM, and is part of NYC's Lindy Hop Weekend, Swing Me the Moon!

3 Ways to Purchase Tickets to Sailor, Swing Me!

  1. FOR TWO WEEKS ONLY beginning THIS Monday, April 26 and ending Monday, May 10, tickets are on sale for $30. In order to receive this $15 dollar discount, 3 things must happen.
    • a. Join the Jittersauce Mailing List. Even those having previously submitted their information must do so again by accessing the following:
    • Send self-addressed, STAMPED envelope to Janice Wilson, Sailor, Swing Me!, 910 Riverside Drive, Apt 3A, NYC, NY 10032.
    • Include check or money order for $30.
  2. Beginning May 10th, tickets can be purchased as part of the Swing Me the Moon - NYC's Lindy Hop Weekend package, tickets valued @ $35. Only one hundred packages available.
  3. Beginning May 10th, tickets can be purchased individually for $40.

Questions? E-mail Janice Wilson

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Cool Swing Tour Website
From: Lynn McCune

Dear Frank and Carole,
I just discovered a pretty cool travel website through a vintage clothing website I like to visit. It's Gilded Age Tours, Inc.

They have a swing/lindy tour of Paris in July that looks like lots of fun, and a vintage dance tour of Paris in late July/early August. They also have vintage clothing shopping tours in England and Paris.

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Kay Boller
From: Sue Fedor

Many of you probably know Kay Boller, the singer with the Bill Elliot Trio (she actually makes them a quartet). I have some good news. About three weeks ago, she had throat surgery and it went well. She's back in fine form and should be singing for quite some time to come.

Always nice to hear some good know how we love our canaries...

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Swing Dance Demos
From: Janice Saylor

The WSDC has been asked to help organze a couple of swing dance demonstrations for good causes.

The first is an event that will be billed as Swing Dance Night at Povich Field on Saturday night June 5. They need 6 to 12 people who could provide some instruction from 6 to 7 pm and then could demonstrate between innings a few times -- 90 second bits maybe 3 or 4 times during the 7 pm game. They will provide 50 free tickets to the game and free dinners to the instructors/dancers. There will be lots of publicity. But they need to have an answer as soon as possible. Let me know if you're interested in participating so that we can give them an answer. Here is what they have to say about their organization:

"The Bethesda Community Base Ball Club is a non-profit established to raise money to improve youth baseball and softball fields. We have a team of top college players. And we are just finishing a one million dollar renovation of a field at Cabin John Regional Park to be named Shirley Povich Field. Our team is named the Bethesda Big Train after Walter Johnson the great pitcher who lived nearby. Opening night is June 4 and it will be sold out. I think the place will be packed (750 seats) Saturday night June 5. "

The second opportunity is on Saturday June 12 at the University of Maryland. It's the Easter Seals 12 hour relay. They need to fill slots for entertainment in the center of the track (while the relay is running). Its a very family-oriented activity. They're also looking for instructors/dancers. If you're interested in doing something on this, please call Marti Meiklejohn at 301/570-3651.

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Fidgety Feet Now Teaching
From: Tricia Reneau

Fidgety Feet is now teaching lessons! We are very excited to offer specialty classes for the Lindy Hopper--all at a central location within walking distance of Metro and plenty of nearby parking. Here are the details:

  • Alley-Oop Aerials
    • Mondays 8:00 - 9:00 p.m.
    • Taught by Jeff Booth, Tricia Reneau, Thomas Iveson, and Christina Etcher
    • Description: Learn the coolest aerials from the group that took swing aerials to new heights! Not just two, but four members of the award-winnng Lindy Hop dance troupe, Fidgety Feet, will teach you how to safely execute these moves so you can get out in the swing jam or wow your friends. Designed for intermediate level dancers and above. You must have a partner to take this class.
    • Cost: $90/couple for 6-week class. Classes start June 14.
  • Beginning Lindy Hop
    • Tuesdays 7:30 - 8:30 p.m.
    • Taught by Matt Smiley and Gretta Thorn
    • Description: Learn the basics of the hottest newly revived dance craze from two of the finest young dancers on the scene. This class will not only teach you the fundamental moves of Lindy Hop, but will also focus on the style of the dancer--right down to the threads you wear on the dance floor!
    • Cost: $95/person for 8-week class. Classes start June 15.
  • Beginning Hollwood Swing for the Intermediate Level Lindy Hopper
    • Tuesdays 8:30 - 9:30 p.m
    • Jeff Booth and Nina Gilkenson
    • Description: Learn the Lindy Hop style that has taken the country by storm! The undisputed leaders of the Smooth Hollywood style in Washington, D.C., Jeff Booth and Nina Gilkenson will take you through basic and complex moves, focusing on balance, execution and styling.
    • Cost: $95/person for 8-week class. Classes start June 15.
  • Swell Swing Techniques for the Hep Cat
    • Thursdays 7:30 - 8:30 p.m.
    • Thomas Iveson and Tricia Reneau
    • Description: In this class, we look at core techniques that will make you a better Lindy Hop dancer and partner. Designed for the intermediate level dancer, this class concentrates on how to use music to your advantage, ways to lead and follow the most basic to the most complex maneuvers, how to lead and follow Dean Collins vs. Savoy style, and tricks of the performance trade. You'll learn some way cool moves and take away skills to make you a sought-after partner on the dance floor. Students should have mastered the lindy turn (whip) and other fundamental moves such as lindy charleston.
    • Cost: $75/person for 6-week class. Classes start June 17.

All classes will be held at the brand new D.C. Dance Collective in the Friendship Heights area of Northwest D.C. (Friendship Heights metro and south approximately six blocks.) There is plenty of on-street parking nearby. Registrations should be sent to:

D.C. Dance Collective
4908 Wisconsin Ave., N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20016
Call or email for info: 202-362-7244 or

You can also call or email Tricia Reneau at 703-526-0562 and for more information. Keep your eyes out for other Fidgety Feet classes as they are added. D.C. Dance Co. also offers classes in ballet and tap--which can help your dancing enormously! In the near future, check out the studio website at

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More Hair Classes on May 22 and May 23
From: Chris Santarlas

Hello Ladies,
If you are planning to attend the May 22, Washington Humane Society's annual BARK BALL, or the May 22 Swing Baltimore Dance, or the dance at America on May 23 to see Bim Bam Baby and you simply have no idea what you'll do with your hair, come get a 'do that'll knock their socks off! I'm doing individual hair sessions on Saturday the 22 from 4pm to 6pm, and on Sunday starting at 5pm. Each session is approximately one hour and you will only need to bring hats, or other accessories, you intend to wear that evening.

Please call (703) 578-8911 to reserve a time - call soon! I am also doing makeup if you would like to complete your look during the session. See you dancing!
---Chris Santarlas

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Update on Forest Glen
From: Sue Fedor

Thanks to everyone who has asked about the Forest Glen Ballroom. Depending on when you talk to me, you get either good news or bad news. Today, I have nothing but good news for you.


...will soon be a thing of the past. The Army has agreed to work through the General Services Administration to find a new owner. GSA works with the local government, in our case, Montgomery County. IF YOU WANT TO EXPRESS YOUR CONCERN THAT THE BALLROOM REMAIN OPEN FOR PUBLIC EVENTS, CALL DOUG DUNCAN, MONTGOMERY COUNTY EXECUTIVE (See Forest Glen Page or our website at This is very important as the formal excessing process is a matter of federal regulation and we cannot predict who will end up ultimately owning the property. Any sort of use covenant can be put on these buildings, but in this case, the county needs to know that there is some sort of demand.


....may soon be a thing of the future! The SOS Board took a bold leap on Thursday at its monthly meeting. The Army told us that the fire/safety improvements would cost roughly $200,000. They have about that much left to repair the roof. We are asking them to forgo roof repair in order to make the needed fire and safety improvements so that we can use the ballroom again.

We may be asking for volunteers to help with repairs or light demolition work. Stay tuned!

OTHER RESTORATION.... underway! If you were home Saturday night at 11:00, Channel 4 covered the kick off of the restoration of the Japanese Pagoda. Special thanks to Lizzie Hess for helping us find our painting guru, Dan and for helping out herself on Saturday! We began painting over the primer with an undercoat of black, enamel paint. We will be continuing the red trim painting for the next few weeks.

We may be meeting again on Saturday, May 22 to continue the work. If you are an experienced painter, please visit our website ( to get Bonnie Rosenthall's number in order to call to reserve a time to paint. The paint we are using is high gloss enamel and shows bad brush strokes very easily.

IF YOU ARE NOT AN EXPERIENCED PAINTER, call anyway, as there is plenty of general painting, clean-up, scraping, etc... work to be done. If you have experience with any other kind of repairs (plumbing, carpentry, electrical, etc...) let Bonnie know when you call.

You know how I love to lecture about this. We turned out hundreds of people for a public meeting about Glen Echo. It was only because Doug Duncan's phone rang off the hook that any action was done. If you think that this ballroom should be saved for future generations and if you would like to dance in it again, you need to call Montgomery County and tell them how you feel. SOS will be doing its part to try and get it open under the Army's current ownership BUT AFTER THE ARMY TURNS IT OVER TO A NEW OWNER, ALL BETS ARE OFF! That is where you come in. Tell the County that thiis facility should be available to the public.

SOS will probably be meeting with Doug over the next few weeks. We want to hear back that his office has been pestered by LINDY HOPPERS about this Forest Glen Ballroom!

By the way, don't be afraid to call if you are not a county resident! Your visits to the ballroom have boosted the local economy in many ways:

  • you may have patronized local eateries before or after your visit
  • some of the band members live (and pay taxes) in Montgomery County (many bands are based in Mont. Co.)
  • we've rented equipment and purchased supplies for these dances in Montgomery County
  • and it adds to the overall quality of life in the metro area.

ESPECIALLY IF YOU ARE ONE OF OUR TEENAGE DANCERS: Tell Doug how few opportunities folks your age have to do anything that takes place in a smoke-free, alcohol-free, yet all-age atmosphere. How many places do you go where you see senior citizens AND young people doing anything together????

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Two passes to Swing on a Star
From: Tuan Tranh

For Sale: two passes to "Swing on a Star" dance camp.

Page and I signed up for it but we found that she will have to move that weekend. Swing on a Star's refund policy is not flexible (or rather nonexistent) and our only hope to get any money back is to find two substitutes.

Dates: Friday evening, June 4, Saturday, June 5, Sunday, June 6 (this is the weekend after Memorial Day weekend)

Location: Camp Ramblewood, north of Havre de Grace, Maryland, 1 1/2 hours from Washington, D.C.,, 45 minutes from Baltimore...

Dance Instructors: Sweden's Rhythm Hot Shots (2 of 'em), Robert Cordoba & Deborah Szekely, Dan Darlington, Donna & Ken Roesel, Greg Avakian, Kelly Ray & Lesley Mitchell, and Ed Freed & Jill Mann.

Bands: City Rhythm Orchestra and Walt Wagner & the Serenaders (who just played for WSDC's USO Canteen Dance at Glen Echo), plus DJ Ken Roessel.

Overview: Friday evening dinner followed by a dance will begin the weekend. Saturday morning and afternoon will feature workshops. Saturday evening's a dance. Sunday morning is workshops again, and Sunday afternoon is the finale dance. The predominant dance styles will be jitterbug, west coast swing, and lindy, with a very occasional touch of Latin. No partner is necessary. Events end Sunday about 5pm.

Please e-mail Tuan at

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Detroit Update
From: Stuart Feldman

Hi there! I just received an email from someone who read my column in your online weekly. "My column?" I thought to myself, I didn't remember writing a column. However, I came back and checked, and sure enough you published my email to you about the swing dance scene in Detroit. Thank you so much! Can I list this on my resume as being published? (haha).

I thought since I was here, again, I would update you on the Detroit scene. Essentially the information I gave is unchanged, save for a few details.

The Velvet Lounge is still the swingin'est place around with all the best dancers and the broadest range of music. Fridays has gone mostly latin on the main floor, with swing upstairs. Saturday is decidedly all swing. Of note is the rapid proliferation of Lindy Hop. We have had several workshops in the past six months and many of our regulars have been traveling to workshops around the Midwest. Our pool of quality dancers increases daily.

On the other side of town, in Dearborn, the 24kt club has been a boon for us. They bring in live music on Fridays and Saturdays, with rockabilly and swing respectively. The instructor, Tim, is very very good. He teaches advanced and beginner classes on Tuesday and Wednesday at 8:30 PM. The classes are based on a four to six week progression, learning a style or combination with plenty of personal instruction. His lessons are far better than those available in Pontiac. Additionally, many of the swing regulars are out giving lessons at highschools and local colleges for those occasions when events are 18 and up.

As far as venues go, one other can be added to the list. Once a month, the State Theater, in downtown Detroit hosts a Friday Night Swing event. The State is one of the old Grand Ballrooms, and remains essentially unchanged from the 1920s and '30s. It has a tremendous wooden dance floor that is all you could ask for when you are ready to jump, jive, 'n wail. They usually combine recorded swing favorites, modern and classic, with a live band. Last month we had Indigo Swing, and there are plans for Big Six, and Cherry Poppin' Daddies to play the venue in the future.

For more information on the current Michigan swing scene, check out our Yahoo Clubs site at "Michiganswing" on the Yahoo Clubs page.

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End of Zones
From: Greg at Zones

After a full year of fun and intensive dancing, ZONES will coming to an end next Friday, May 28th!!!

So, this is your last chance to enjoy all the excitement as we go out in a bang!!! However, we who brought you ZONES will continue to bring you new concepts and new venues to a city surely lacking in the exciting nightlife we hope we have brought to you as to date.

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Mickey Sherman's Website
From: Mickey Sherman

Mickey Sherman is a long-time dancer. He was a perfromer in vaudeville and made his way to the Savoy Ballroom in the early 1930s and learned Lindy Hop there. He won the national title in 1941. Subsequently, he joined the Navy and achieved distinction as a fighter pilot in WWII. He still teaches and dances in Oklahoma city. He has entered the electronic age with his own web page:

If you want to contact him, his e-mail address is: HAVOC5AF@AOL.COM

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4. Here's why...
From: Tom and Robin Cunningham

Hi, y'all.
I've been asked yet again why the Tom Cunningham Orchestra doesn't go to the two-dance format that the Swing Dance Committee has adopted. "You can make lots more money," they all tell us. Well, Frank, if you will be kind enough to post this letter the world will finally know why we have chosen to keep the one-dance format.

First of all, if money were the issue, you can believe me when I tell you that the Tom Cunningham Orchestra would have folded YEARS AGO!! The Tom Cunningham Orchestra has always had an agenda--to spread the gospel of REAL swing music to young and old alike. We feel that in the two-dance format there's no chance for the inexperienced dancers to "feed" off of the experienced dancers. Sadly (as far as we're concerned), the music is not what they're there for--they want to learn to swing dance and look cool! They gain their appreciation for the music over time as they get into the dancing. At the beginners' dance, there are no really experienced dancers for the newcomers to watch or learn from or dance with, and with nothing to aim for, they lose interest. Whether it be dancing, singing, arithmetic or anything else, you learn it from someone who does it better than you do.

Also, in the two-dance format, the "electricity" just isn't in the atmosphere like it is in the jam-packed room of young and old, experienced and inexperienced. The band needs that electricity, so that they can give it back in the music. It's that "Triangular Relationship" between the music, the dancers, and the musicians that Tom wrote about in Dancing USA. Eash side of the triangle feeds off of each of the other sides. Without the Triangular Relationship, the dance hall just becomes a practice session for the dancers and the musicians alike.

The first point leads directly to another point that I'd like to address. Now, mind you, I'm not a dancer by any stretch of imagination, and I can't really say what it's like to dance with someone who dances worse than I do, since there's no such person. But I've seen something lately that I really don't like to see. Often when a not-so-good dancer asks a really good dancer to dance, she (or he) says "No" and 30 seconds later a good dancer asks that same person to dance, and she or he jumps up willing and rearin' to go. Now you and I both know that those good dancers never would have gotten good if they never got to dance with someone better than them. Rather than say "No" to all the less-experienced dancers, why can't they occasionally say "Yes" and then help or coach them through a dance, so next time the bad dancer will be a better dancer? I really hope swing dancing is not becoming a club for an elite few. I think that would be a terrible thing.

Well, enough of my rantings and ravings. Let me just leave it at this--for what we feel is the common good of swing (dancing AND music), we intend to stay with the one-dance format as long as the Park Service will permit us to do so.

Thanks for "listening."

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African Dance
From: Anna Duncan

A big Hello and buckets full of smiles for the whole D.C. Lindy community from Anna Banana!!!

I haven't actually been dancing in about 5 months, which I was a bit on the meloncholy side about. But 3 weeks ago I started a dance class which has given me a rock-solid base for Savoy Style Lindy Hop which you just wouldn't believe. Half of Lindy moves can be traced back to the roots of African Dance--almost unchanged!!! If there are any classes being offered in the DC area I HIGHLY suggest that every self-respecting Lindy Hopper go out and learn some ZULU steps to wow everybody with during the next jam. I even wear my Bleyer's to class even though you are supposed to be barefoot. :)

African dancing classes were even reccomended to me by the Rhythm Hot Shots when I was staying in Sweden this past fall/winter season.

As for Lindy Hop down here in Tidewater, there is a small 'swing' scene but no real dancers. I'd be teaching now, except I have suddenly gotten particular and I don't want to dance with anyone but my fiance. :) But he's been busy with work, which means lessons haven't happened with him yet.....but soon. Have fun everyone!!!

PS: Check out our website at:

www.pilot.infi .net/~arcangel/equinox

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Erik and Sylvia Engagement
From: Jen Hollywood

...And they lived happily ever after. Most of us grew up believing this is the way most romances end. And every girl dreamed her knight and shining armor would sweep her off her feet and they would ride off into the sunset together. But in modern day Los Angeles, it seems these kind of fairy tales exist only in the movies. For those lucky enough to be in attendance at the latest Bill Elliot performance at the Satin Ballroom, we witnessed a remarkable scene in a romance fit for a 1940's screen classic.

It starred Erik Robison as the dashing prince and Sylvia Skylar as the ever beautiful object of his affections. During the second set, as the night became increasingly entertaining, Bill Elliot announced things were about to get even more exciting. He handed off the microphone to Erik who began an accapella serenade to an unknowing Sylvia, down within the crowd below. By the time she turned to realize what was unfolding, the crowd sensed they were witnessing something remarkable. As she gazed up at him, the tears became uncontrollable. He summoned her lovingly to the stage where an overwhelmed audience listened to his simple, yet sincere words. He spoke of how much the last two years had meant to him, and of how much he loved her. Then he took a step towards her, and as he knelt on one knee it felt as if every breath in the room paused, waiting to hear what was inevitably next to come. He took from his pocket a box with a ring, and placed it on her finger.

I can't tell you specifically what happened next, for no one knew quite what to say. It was as if we had all been transported to some other place for a moment, and now we were all trying to decide exactly what to do now. I heard some comments from the guys around me, something about "damn, leave it to Erik to make the rest of us look bad." But mostly, we just stood in awe of the event we had just shared.

I took my opportunity to give my congratulations later that evening, as the two of them stood outside the ballroom together. And I'm sure mine blended in with all the many well wishes they heard that night.

But if there is anything I would wish for them, it would be... "happily ever after."

[Editor's Note: We are told that Jen Hollywood is the great great grand-daughter of of the person from whom Hollywood, California got its name.]

PS: Click Here the website for the film, The 13th Floor. Remember Erik and Sylvia are in it.

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Wear Insoles
by Lisa Nguyen

Wear insoles.

If I could offer you only one tip for the future, insoles would be it. The long term benefits of insoles have been heralded by many dancers, whereas the rest of my advice has no basis more reliable than my meandering experience on the dance floor. I will dispense this advice now.

Enjoy the beauty and power of good frame. Oh, never mind. You will never understand the power and beauty of good frame until you dance with someone that has noodle arms. But trust me: in twenty years, you will look back at photos of yourself and recall in a way you cannot grasp now, how many dances.

Lay before you and how fabulous you really looked in those spectators.

Your deodorant does not last as long as you imagine.

Don't worry about the future of swing. Or worry, knowing that worrying is just as effective as trying to do the Charleston on a treadmill. The real troubles in your life are apt to be the things that blindside you at 1 a.m. at the bar as you wonder why you ordered that fifth martini.

Do one aerial every day that scares you.

Carry a handkerchief.

Don't be reckless with other people's dance space. Don't put up with people who are reckless with yours.


Don't waste your time being jealous of those who live in San Francisco or New York City.

Sometimes you dance with a partner. Sometimes you dance by yourself. The dance is long and, in the end, you've burned off dinner.

Remember the bargains you found at the thrift store. Forget how you got ripped off at Nordstrom's. If you succeed in doing this, tell me how.

Keep your grandmother's old dress; throw away your old ticket stubs.


Don't feel guilty if you can't Balboa. Some of the most interesting people I know didn't know how to Balboa at age 22. Some of the most interesting 40-year-olds still don't.

Drink plenty of water.

See Frankie Manning. You'll miss him when he's gone.

Maybe you'll flirt with that cat with the great tie. Maybe you won't. Maybe you'll date that kitten with the great twirly skirt. Maybe you won't. Maybe you'll give up swing at 40. Maybe you'll dance the shim sham at your 75th birthday party. Whatever you do, congratulate yourself if you wear suspenders that button; berate yourself if you wear the kind that clip.

Your choices are limited to whatever is behind the bar. So are everybody else's. (Your choices are limited to how old you are. So are everybody else's.)

Enjoy your local club scene; use it every night of the week. Don't be afraid of the bouncers or what the cover charge is. It's the only place that offers swing nights.

Lindy. Even if you have nowhere to do it but in a smoke free, alcohol-free, soda-pop-pouring parlor.

Read the drink menu, even if you don't drink.

Do not watch Erin Stevens and Steven Mitchell; they will only make you feel uncoordinated.

Go to Swing Camp Catalina. You will never know when you'll ever be able to get in again.

Be nice to your dance instructors. They are your best link to getting someone to dance with you and the most likely to tell you if you just plain suck.

Understand that bands will come and go. But to a precious few should you actually buy tickets.

Work hard to bridge the gaps between swing now and swing then, for the older you get, the more you need to remember that swing was around before Indigo.

Dance at The Crystal Ballroom once, but leave before you're too spoiled for all other dance floors. Dance on concrete once (if you must), but leave before you do serious damage to your legs.


Accept certain inalienable truths: Beginners will kick you, your Bleyers will wear out, and you, too, will realize "Swing Kids" is a bad movie. And when you do, you'll fantasize that when you were taking Beginning Lindy, cover charges were reasonable, bands didn't play so many covers, and other dancers respected your floor space. Respect their floor space.

Don't expect anyone to protect you if you get clocked by a novice lindy hopper. Maybe you'll be wearing hockey gear, maybe you'll learn Tae-Bo swing, but you will always bruise.

Don't mess too much with your swing wardrobe or by the time you're 40, you'll have to buy a separate home for your clothes.

Be careful whose moves you steal, but be patient with the 1,754th person that asks you to teach them the Charleston. Teaching is a form of perpetuity, doing it is a way of ensuring the venues will stay open, the good bands will keep touring, and you will always have someone to dance with.

But trust me on the insoles.

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Dance Etiquette
From: Dan Daley>/P>

In response to the Cunninghams' article in the Forum I would say that it would not hurt any of us to review our knowledge and practice of dance etiquette. There are some very good articles on dance etiquette on the U.S. Swing Dance Server (follow the link from LWIR and click on "Technique") that are worthwhile to review for beginner and experienced dancers alike. To summarize part of one article, there are normally really only three appropriate reasons to decline a dance: 1) you don't know the dance (since we're all swing dancers at swing dances, this doesn't apply), 2) you are taking a rest break, or 3) you have promised the dance to someone else. Note that if you are taking a break (#2), that means you sit out the whole dance; it is rude to dance with someone else after already turning one person down. Also note that wanting to dance with someone else and having promised someone else the dance are different things.

There are some additional subtleties and I encourage everyone to check out these articles. I also encourage readers to have a look at the very good (and very long) _Discussion_ on lead and follow technique on the same page. There is a lot there also on etiquette and the value of dancing with people of different skill levels.

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Grey Pentax 260mm automatic camera, LOST at USO
From: Cullen Kowalski

To everyone that gathered for the picnic before the USO dance and everyone else, please help me find my camera.

I know that I had it with me inside the dance after the picnic and the last memory that I have is when I went to take a picture of all the girls when they lined up together. A great song came on immediately afterwards and I believe I put it back in my back in it's soft case but I did not close the bag. After that, I have no idea where it when, I assumed that it was still in my back until I went to look for it last Saturday night.

It's a fully automatic GREY PENTAX 260mmm camera and has at least 26 pictures of 36 in black and white of us at the picnic (in case you hear someone talking.)

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Tom and Jennifer?

From: Sue Fedor

My boss subscribes to "Country Inns, Bed and Breakfasts." Occaisionally, he'll toss one my way (to motivate me to work harder and earn more money so that I can afford to stay at these places?)

So imagine my surprise when I turn to page 39 of an article about some old rich folks who decided to renew their wedding vows at the Hotel duPont...and I see TOM and CAROLYN! There was no mention of the band, but perhaps that's a good thing, since they identified Tom and Carolyn as "professional swing dancer Tom Koerner and his lady Jennifer."


PS to Debra: do you know put "professional swing dancer" on your tax return under "occupation"???

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Swing in Kansas City
From: Joe Ketcherside

Hi guys, I have been enjoying your pages and felt I had to send you an addition for your travel guide. Kansas City is now home to two wonderful Lindy Hop instructors, Jean Denney and Frankie Hoang. They have been teaching Lindy to a group of Kansas City dancers, and have established a solid beachhead here in KC. You can find information about them at Jean and Frankie teach 4 week segments of beginning, improver, 4 levels of intermediate, and various advanced courses. They have also offered their beginning class at some local corporations, and as a 4-hour Lindy Fast Start on weekend afternoons in Kansas City and at nearby Lawrence KS, home of the University of Kansas. A recent workshop hosting Charlie Wyler was well-attended, and they have additional workshops scheduled in the future. A group will also be traveling to St. Louis for a Frankie Manning workshop.

Jean and Frankie are excellent instructors, with deep knowledge of Lindy history and tradition, and tremendous energy. Any trip to KC should include a couple Lindy turns with them.

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Swing in Florida
From: Joe Chapman

I just went to your site for the first time. Here are some Florida updates.

The Sugar Palm in Tampa has just recently closed down. The previous manager Taylor Ward is now just doing special Swing events. Taylor Ward Productions (813)404-9710 or 248-5549 There is one June 5th at the Colesseum in St. Petersburg,FL with Swingerhead (band from Orlando). Colesseum is a huge authentic 1930's refurbished dance ballroom. Also, events take place at the Gulfport Casino in Gulfport, Fla. (right next to St. Pete),another beautiful old dance ballroom from that era. There are a few other Tampa venues developing, maybe Taylor would know what they are.

I live in Ft. Myers, where I am a dancer with the Tity Boom Swing Band (website . . .. site only has intro page now, butshould be up in a few weeks.Tity Boom is well known throughout SE and SW FL (Miami, Ft. Lauderdale, Naples,Ft. Myers, etc.) We had a venue most of last year which is now closed, but we will be having another in Ft. Myers soon at, again, one of those beautiful old ballrooms called The Hall of Fifty States. I will let you know details when we get closer to a starting date.

On the East coast of FL, anyone traveling should check out the web site Alfred (aka,Mr.Dance) teaches a 3 hr Lindy Hop class on Monday nights in Ft. Lauderdale and usually has any ongoing events on his site. He also is developing a dance troupe that does Lindy and more (other dances). He's a wonderful guy and a terrific dancer who lived in NYC with all those great dancers back when.

Manray's in Pampano Beach,FL is THE main place for anything happening swing-wise on the East Coast (4301 N. Federal Hwy) This is an alternative club that has swing on Wed & Fri eve. (lessons at 9, dancing till wee-hours) They have touring bands occasionally; otherwise,mostly DJ'.s

Florida, in general,is a little behind the times re swing. We have swing enthusiasts for sure but not a lot of venues. And mostly "East Coast Swing" (not Lndy) is taught in clubs.

For any immediate travelers, Tues.,June 1st, Tity Boom band is playing at at Sangria's,609 E.Las Olas Blvd.Ft.Lauderadale,Fla (9 to Midnight)

In Orlando, go to The Rat Pack (3 nights/week) or across the street, The Sapphire Club (an alternative venue that does swing on special nights).

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