1. Why is 'swing' called 'swing'? Am I supposed to swing my hips a lot? Swing describes the music that we dance to and the feeling it evokes, not a swinging motion of the body. Swing refers to the sense of driving 'feel' or rhythmic 'groove'that you just can't help intuitively responding to by say, tapping your feet or nodding your head (we say, "This music really swings!"). Swing is also a jazz music style from the 1930s, with the concept of the 'swung note' - a lilting rhythm of unequal notes where the weaker beat is emphasised (unlike classic music). So swing dance simply means dancing to swing music - not because there's a lot of swinging motion in your body!
2. Do I need a partner? No! No partner is required for socials or for classes. In classes, we rotate partners, so even if we have more of one gender than the other, everyone will get to participate. You don’t need a partner for our social dances either. Lindy Hop is a social dance, so you should be dancing with everyone, plus dancing with everyone will make you a better dancer more quickly.
3. What should I wear? Swing dancing can be quite active, so wear something you can move comfortably in and won't get too hot. Our classes and most weekly socials are casual dress. For weekend dances, especially if there’s a band, we recommend that you dress a little nicer. Shoes should be flat, smooth soled and not fly off your feet. Heels are not recommended.
5. What's the difference between the free classes and the studio classes? Free Beginner classes at our socials are fun 30 min 'taster' sessions. You can always drop in on this, we always start from "zero" each week. We teach relatively simple swing (6-count). It's a great introduction for people who have never danced swing before, and also good for reviewing basics. Our studio courses are much more in-depth and we teach more complex Lindy Hop and Charleston (8-count) and essential skills of how to lead and follow, connection and body movement that we do not teach at the free classes, and are the best option if you would like to learn progressively and see improvement over a few months.
7. What is the age range of people who attend your classes and dances? We have all ages! The most common age range is 20 – 50s.
8. What's the best way for me to find out about upcoming events, socials and classes? Two ways: (1) opt to receive our once-a-week emails, and (2) visit this website regularly. We also have many interesting things posted on our Facebook Page. Joining our email list is the best!
9. I am visiting Hong Kong. Are there any lindy hop/ swing events happening during my stay? Welcome! We love meeting visiting dancers. Check our regularly‐updated calendar to see what's happening.
10. I really want to get good. What do I do? (1) Go social dancing. Consistent practice is the key!(2) Take studio classes. (3) ASK people with more and less experience than you, to dance. (4) Attend workshops and international events. (5) Take risks. Make mistakes. Have fun!
12. Who is Frankie Manning? Considered to be the "Father of Lindy Hop," Frankie Manning led a team of dancers, Whitey's Lindy Hoppers, in the 1940s swing dancing in the famous ballrooms of Harlem, New York, including the Savoy Ballroom and the Cotton Club. After the second world war and shifts in popular music and culture, Frankie returned to the floor, teaching and inspiring thousands of dancers worldwide for the remainder of his life. To learn more about Frankie, visit http://frankiemanning.com/ Frankie's obit: http://www.latimes.com/news/obituaries/la-me-frankie-manning28-2009apr28,0,502595.story
Swing dancing is a uniquely happy social experience that puts us close to each other - here are some things to keep in mind!
Be safe– Keep yourself and your partner safe. Avoid doing aerials on the social dance floor, especially with partners you do not know well. Watch where you and your partner are on a crowded floor in order to avoid collisions. When bumps do happen, a simple apology is appropriate.
Be respectful– Be courteous with your words and actions, especially with people you have just met or do not know well. We want everyone to feel safe and comfortable dancing here.
Share the dance floor– Dance small if it’s crowded!
Hygiene - Dancing can be sweaty. It's much nicer to share close quarters with a clean and (somewhat) 'fresh' person - so change your shirt, wear deodorant, have a breath mint.
Buy a minimum of one food or drink item on each dance night. Our socials are free entry, but are held in bars and restaurants, and these venues are businesses. Please buy something (it can be juice or bottled water). Please, don't insist on tap water. If a venue loses business on us, we lose the venue, and we can no longer offer free entry to our socials and classes!
Be aware of other guests and employees at a restaurant/bar– it is our responsibility to stay out of their way, not the other way around.