Oct 24, 2010

Lindy Hop in Toy Story

Thanks to our friends on Facebook for tipping us off to this Pixar animation short that contains some classic Lindy Hop moves between the Toy Story characters Jessie and Woody:

According to the blog "Bleeding Cool" this short "was made to play in the intermission of the Toy Story and Toy Story 2 3D double feature that played a year or so ago" in theaters.  I do love how fitting the rag dolls are for the shape of Lindy Hop with it's yo-yo like patterns bringing partners away and toward each other.

The source for this sequence seems to be Todd Yannacone and (my hero) Frida Segerdahl dancing during the 2006 Ultimate Lindy Hop Showdown back when it was in Minneapolis (now held in New Orleans).  Watch the very first couple in this video and look for the 'baby carry' position at about 50 seconds in.

Now I don't know the back story on this, but I doubt Todd and Frida ever even knew about this. Contrast that with another Toy Story dance sequence and surely these dancers and choreographers and musicians were paid and recognized for this...

Hey Pixar - hire our Lindy Hoppers!

Oct 22, 2010

Tribute Dances by Lindy Hoppers

The Lindy Hop world tends to favor dancers creating their own choreography, but sometimes it's appropriate to honor our forebears with a tribute dance. A few of these have caught my eye lately so I thought I'd do some original/modern video pairings for you to appreciate.

First, Sharon Davis recently did a tribute to Gene Kelly during the Southern Belle Swing Bash in Atlanta, Georgia. First, the original:

and Sharon's lovely, feminine take on the routine:

She did an awesome job, didn't she?

Next up, Jo Hoffberg put together a hula routine for The Jump Session held in Seattle before Camp Jitterbug in May 2010.  The Atomic Cherry Bombs were her backup dancers.

The original:

The tribute:

Again, a fantastic recreation! Jo wrote about the experience on her blog in case you'd like to learn about teaching choreography to people halfway around the world!

Lastly, a Lindy Hop routine that's a tribute to another Lindy Hop routine, but with a twist. The original was created by Kevin St. Laurent and Carla Heine 'back in the day', and was recreated in hip hop style by Max Pitruzzella and Tommy Blacharez from Montpellier, France (who later formed the Ninjammerz).

The original from 2003 (?) that's pre-YouTube! Forever ago...

The parody from 2006, which made Tommy and Max suddenly much more well known in the Lindy world!

Rocktober 2010 Jack and Jill Results

Here are the results from the Rocktober 2010 Jack and Jill Finals!

I'll use the ladies' outfits to point them out in the video:
1st place - Jon Tigert and Ellen Huffman (blue skirt)
2nd - Chris Schoenfelder and Caitlin Baird (red dress)
3rd - Mark Calkins and Mandy Spencer (red skirt)
4th - Erwin Amurao and Dani Dowler (black and white dress)
5th - Adam Sheltz and Kathryn King (yellow dress)

Congrats to all of you for making the finals! It was a blast to watch you dance!

Oct 19, 2010

Rocktober 2010 Instructors and Jam Video

More highlights video from the weekend -  Kevin and Jo performed their award-winning routine to the song 'Communication' and Patrick and Natasha debuted a brand new routine!  World premiere, people.

Someone also caught some video of the jam that broke out right after the band finished playing for Jack and Jill finals.  I think the band was impressed.... :)

Patrick and Natasha

Kevin and Jo

Jam Circle

Posts about Rocktober are on Patrick and Natasha's blog, and on Jo Hoffberg's blog. We had blast with you guys!   Thanks for working your butts off for us!

Oct 18, 2010

Rocktober 2010 Showcase Competition Results

The 'Any Swing Goes' Showcase competition was so much fun to watch!  We were so proud of all the dancers who worked so hard and put together some really fantastic routines, many for the first time.  You rocked our world!

The results:
1st - Mark & Ellen
2nd - Jon & Mandy
3rd - Mark & Shannon
4th - John & Kathryn
5th - Travis & Ali
6th - Chris & Liz
7th - Brian & Dani

And now the videos!

Mark and Ellen

update- Mark and Ellen's routine was blogged about recently on the topic of creating your own routine and the blogger notes places they'd changed/upgraded between ILHC in August and Rocktober in October.  It's an interesting read!

Jon and Mandy

Mark and Shannon

John and Kathryn

Travis and Ali,

Chris and Liz

Brian and Dani

Thanks to all the competitors!  We're already looking forward to next year at ROCKTOBER!

Go 'like' our Facebook page so you can keep up on all the happenings with SwingColumbus!

Oct 11, 2010

Rocktober 2010 Evening Dances

The complete Rocktober experience includes up to 10 hours of workshops, 12 hours of social dancing, and maybe even a hotel room.  If that's a bit much for you, we hope you can still join us at the evening dances on Friday, October 15 and Saturday, October 16.  We even have a spectator pass for Saturday so you can see your favorite competitors and listen to a live band!

There are a variety of ticket types available so that you can come experience Rocktober with us! 

Pass Type Advance At the Door Member Discount Student Discount
Friday Evening Dance $12 $15 $3 $3
Saturday Evening Dance $15 $20 $5 $5
Saturday Evening Spectator Pass N/A $5 N/A N/A

To purchase, go to the Registration Page and click on REGISTER NOW!  Choose Rocktober in the dropdown.  Any applicable discounts will be applied as you fill out the registration form.  After submitting the form, you will then be directed to Google Checkout to pay for your registration. 
Hyatt Regency Columbus
Location: Both evenings will take place in the ballrooms at the
Hyatt Regency Columbus
350 N. High Street
Columbus, OH 43215

Friday Evening Dance - October 15
8:00PM - 2:00AM
Music provided by 4 DJs battling for GREATEST DJ EVER.
Audience vote will determine the winner of each round.  Champion announced at 1:30AM

Saturday Evening Dance - October 16
Music by Todd Stoll's Jazz 2 Go Septet from 9PM to 12:30AM
10:30-11PM - Showcase Competition  (1 couple, 1 song, choreographed)
11:45PM - Instructor and class performances
12:00AM - Jack and Jill Competition  (couples randomly paired, improvised)
12:30AM - Band finishes, Competition results announced
12:30AM-2:00AM - DJ'ed music

Saturday Spectator Pass
Want to check out 200 people dancing, live music, and all those competitions, but you can't dance? (yet!)  For just $5 you can still join in the festivities!  Available (at the door only) for Saturday night

Questions or Feedback
Give us a call at 614-467-0102 or use the contact form to send us a note.  We will get back to you right away!

Workshops - it's not too late!
There is still room to join any of the workshop tracks, including Beginner Lindy Hop, where you'll learn Lindy from SCRATCH - you don't need experience or a partner to join us!  The beginner track includes admission to the evening dance on Saturday.  See past posts for more info on the Beginner Track, and int/adv  instructors Patrick and Natasha and Kevin and Jo!

Oct 4, 2010

Our Resident Rockstar Instructors - Kevin and Jo

It goes without saying that Kevin St. Laurent and Jo Hoffberg are two of THE BEST dancers and instructors out there today.  You rarely get a chance to catch them in the US, they're always shocking our pants off with amazing choreography and effortless aerials, and gosh darn it they're just great people.  We had SO much fun with them last year and the survey comments we received afterward could not have been glowier.  I think we re-booked them during dinner on Sunday night after the last workshop last year. 

Trust us, you want to come to Rocktober in Columbus, Ohio this October 15-17.  Just look at the photos from Rocktober 2009!

Just like last year, Kevin and Jo will be teaching Aerials 1 and 2 at Rocktober, and these are the only classes where you DO need a partner, because we won't rotate.  Aerials 1 is included as an elective in the Intermediate or Advanced workshop pass, and Aerials 2 is an add-on class.  They'll be doing different material than last year, and woah look at this!

They've got all kinds of great performances on YouTube, some of which is in my blog about them last year.  They've had a bang up year with all kinds of accolades and here's just a sampling:

2nd Place in the Classic at ILHC in August

They both made it to the finals of the Solo Charleston at ILHC (Kevin won 1st place!) and Kevin did this adorable hat trick routine for the Cabaret

Here's an awesome video of them with 4 other dancers who make up the Killer Dillers performing in May in Italy

Killer Diller Show at Swing Brother Swing, Bologna Italy, May 2010 from Killer Dillers on Vimeo.

So go!  Get registered for Rocktober 2010 if you haven't already!  It's gonna be AWESOME!
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