Not sure why I haven’t thought to post this clip before, but hey better late than never right? This video clip is possibly the most well known piece of dancing/music in history when it comes to swing. The song Hellzapoppin’ is by Slim Gaillard and Slam Stewart, and the dancers are the famous Whitey’s lindy hoppers. This is what Wikipedia has to say about them :
Whitey’s Lindy Hoppers was a professional performing group of Savoy Ballroomswing dancers, started in 1935 by Herbert “Whitey” White. The group took on many different forms, with up to 12 different groups performing under this name or one of a number of different names used for the group over the years, including Whitey’s Hopping Maniacs, Harlem Congaroo Dancers, and The Hot Chocolates. In addition to touring both nationally and internationally, the group appeared in a number of feature films and Broadway productions and counted Dorothy Dandridge and Sammy Davis Jr. among their celebrity regulars. By the summer of 1943, with most of its best male dancers having been drafted, the Whitey’s Lindy Hoppers had pretty much disbanded. The Savoy Ballroom closed in 1958.
Of all the members of Whitey’s Lindy Hoppers, Al Minns, Leon James and Frankie Manning are amongst the most famous — Minns and James in part for their role in the research of Jean and Marshall Stearns‘s influential book Jazz Dance, Minns for his work with The Rhythm Hot Shotsduring the 1980s’ swing revival, and Manning for his role, starting in 1986, in contributing to the swing and Lindy Hop revival after Minns died in 1985. Manning and Norma Miller were among the few members of Whitey’s Lindy Hoppers still alive during the 1990s and 2000s and were some of that era’s most influential Lindy Hop performers and instructors. With Manning’s death in April 2009, Miller alone remains to teach and lecture at dance workshops and Lindy Hop conventions.
In my mind it is the pinnacle of swing at its most awesome, the greatest Lindy hop sequence EVER filmed, and one of the most complex dance sequences in cinema history. I am so awe inspired by the movement of these dancers, I for one cannot watch this clip without getting tingles down my spine. These people make me feel so humbled in my dancing, and remind me there is always more to learn no matter how good you are.
I can even say I have had the honor of meeting Norma Miller when she came to visit Adelaide for Swing camp Oz a few years back. What an inspiring woman
I’ll be heading to NY with Mr Tardo in May to attend a dance event called “Frankie 100″ which is to celebrate what would have been Frankie Mannings 100th birthday (He is the one who gets kicked in the bum). Pretty much the entire world of swing dancers will be in attendance, i am so excited.
I know it’s a bit late, but I thought I would tell you about my Valentines weekend. It was super lovely.
It all began that I had decided that I was going to drive up to Whyalla (which is 4 hours drive away) after work on Valentines day to surprise Mr Tardo. To make sure he didn’t organize to go out anywhere else I had promised him we could have a borderlands date that night at 7.30, as I figured I could make it there by then. I had swapped shifts with one of my co-workers so that I could leave a little early that friday as well. So the day came, and it turned out that we were over staffed, I tried to convince my boss to let me go early, but she wouldn’t claiming she had some work she needed me to do. The next few hours I spent feeling annoyed as I set about some seriously mundane tasks that were not actually my job to do, all the while getting shittier and shittier with my boss as I went along. It just seemed like she was trying to stop me from leaving. As it turned out, that’s exactly what she was doing! About 2.30 a giant bouquet of flowers turned up at work with my name on it! Mr Tardo had been speaking with Janette to let her know he was going to have flowers sent to me and made her promise not to tell and not to let me leave until they arrived.
So after a few minutes of gushing and giggling with the girls at work about how sweet he is, Janette finally let me leave. But not until she had cursed us both for sticking her in the middle of us trying to be cute.
The drive to Whyalla was a little exciting, we had heaps of rain that day as well as the few before and some of the roads were almost completely flooded. I actually got a little worried that we were going to get flooded in and I wouldn’t make it there or back. But I finally made it there in one piece, and he was super happy and surprised to see me. We had Indian for dinner and I think I’ll cut the story off short there
The next morning I saw Mr Tardo off to work then got in my car and headed back to Adelaide (Lucky I really enjoy driving huh? ). Thankfully the rain had stopped which gave the roads a chance to clear, so the trip back was somewhat uneventful. I listened to my audio book of Ready Player One which I would recommend to everyone as it is a freaking amazing book, and I was home in no time.
The reason I had come back the very next day was because I had a Lolita meet to go to! I was quite looking forward to it as I had picked up a few new piece for my wardrobe since the last one and I was super keen to wear them out. One piece of which is this adorable pink top…
The Lolita Valentines day meet was upstairs at the Chocolate Bean, and I was delighted to find out that majority of their menu was gluten-free! I was running a little late so most of the girls were well into their snacks by the time I joined them, but I was there just in time to vote on the best dress and take some photos!
I was even lucky enough to get a love letter, even though I turned up after they had all written them out. Mine was from the lovely Angela
What a wonderful weekend it was I feel so very loved.