Sharpen your Lindy Skills!
Washington/Baltimore area is blessed with an abundance of good teachers who can get you Lindy Hopping in short order!
WARNING: Lindy Hop is the dance in the famous GAP Commercial --- if that is what you want to do, make sure that you choose a LINDY HOP teacher. If you take lessons from folks who aren't on this list, be certain to get an agreement in advance that you will be learning Lindy Hop --- accept no substitutes!
Since classes change every 8 weeks, some of the stuff may be a bit out of date, but here is the basic drill. (Instructors are not listed in any particular order):
1. Tom and Debra
Possibly the most active teachers are Tom Koerner and Debra Sternberg at
Tom and Debra have a huge string of championship victories and tell me that they trained more than 4,000 people in 1999. They have classes in DC/Virginia on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Sunday.
2. Marc and Ellen
Marc Shepanek and Ellen Engle may be reached at:
Former Virginia State champions, they teach in a variety
3. Sommer and Dorry
Sommer Gentry and Dorry Segev have a few swing venues in Baltimore :
4. Greater Baltimore Swing Dance Committee
Also in Baltimore, check out the GBSDC in Catonsville
They hold 1-2 events a month at the Avalon Studion
5. Mike and Tina
Mike and Tina Foley have dances and classes at the Old Fairfax Town Hall. Check their Website for class dates.
6. Sue and Gary
Sue & Gary Caley have been teaching lively and fun swing dance classes and some ballroom for over 5 years in the Reston area. They are now teaching for Tom and Debra both in Reston and Centreville. For class information or to contact them check out www.gottaswing.com and/or firstname.lastname@example.org .
7. Do It Yourself
These are the "majors". There are lots of other folks teaching Swing, but if you take lessons from the above mentioned folks, you will be able to dance with most people you meet on the floor, since all these teachers use a "standardized" version of the steps, differing mostly in their instructional style and the order in which they teach the steps. People that are NOT on the list may teach something else... beware...
All the above people charge about $96 for an eight week series. This is a bargain -- check out the prices at some "commercial" studios to get an idea of just how much of a bargain it is. Don't be fooled by the "free first lesson" scam! Those little ads in the Washington Post cost about $500 a day -- the money to pay for them will come right out of your pocket!
You should plan to take at least beginner and intermediate series. If you come to all the classes and practice regularly, you should be dancing well in a month and like a pro in four months. Plan on spending about $100 for shoes and a little bit for vintage outfits, and you could have a brand new life for less than $400 plus an hour a day effort.
The key to becoming a good dancer is to GO OUT DANCING! Don't let anyone tell you that you should only dance in one place. (A lot of studios like to keep their market captive with nonsense about the supposed "deleterious" effect of mingling with the general public). Dancing is social -- come to the events at Glen Echo and any place where there is live music. Be open and accepting and you'll have a whole slew of new friends in no time. Lindy Hop is good exercise and you get to wear funny clothes as well.
The written descriptions of the steps on jitterbuzz.com (see link below) are keyed to the "typical" steps as taught by the instructors listed above. There may be small differences, but the writeup can help when you get home from the lesson and have questions...
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