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What is Swing / Lindy Hop

Swing is an umbrella term describing the jazz era of dance from the 20's to 40's and is an African-American jazz dance and music genre born in the Black community in Harlem, New York City.

Swing dancing can be referred to by many names including lindy hop, jitterbug, and includes many sub genres balboa, solo jazz, shag, charleston and blues. Rock'n'roll, which came after swing, also has sub genres and is known by different names depending on where you are in the world. Swing and lindy hop are one and the same and Jitterbug was also a term often used to describe the dance.

It is primarily a partnered social dance, but includes elements of solo dancing, performance and competition.

Today you will find swing dancing all over the world, it breaks through language barriers and immediately opens up the opportunity to meet new people and connect.

Swing is often described as the happy dance.

"I've never seen a Lindy Hopper who wasn't smiling. It's a happy dance. It makes you feel good."

— Frankie Manning

The Frankie Manning Foundation is a wonderful resource to learn all about the history of Swing Dancing.

Here are some of our favourite videos

The Lindy Hop scene in Hellzapoppin' (1941)

The International Lindy Hop Championships Invitational Draw full contest (skip through the first bit where they are getting set up)

There are literally thousands of videos on Youtube though so go down the rabbit whole and enjoy the journey!

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