Sunday, September 26, 2010

The Return of Lindy Dandy

It seems I’ve merely blinked my eyes and it’s already been a month since my last post. It’s true, ILHC (and Andrew and Karen’s Showcase) was the last big thing that had the swing dance world’s attention. It seems to me we’ve all been catching a breather since then.

The next headline event is the New Orleans Swing Dance Festival & The Ultimate Lindy Hop Showdown. Showdown has held some legendary competitions. I still show non-dancer friends the ULHS 2006 Fast “Liberation” Finals when I’m trying to explain what Lindy Hop is all about. Last year, the organizers took a chance by changing the main strictly competition into a tournament-configured set of head-to-head battles. It’s an awesome idea that no doubt pushes dancers’ boundaries for showmanship and performance. I’d love to attend someday, but alas, this just isn’t my year. (The videos I caught from last year’s comps are awesome. Be sure to check out the Solo Blues and the Slow Dance Finals).

In the blues realm, Blues Blaze in NYC is the next big dance weekend. It’s a weekend workshop featuring some big names in the Blues instructor circuit plus several fierce competitions, including a Champions (Invitational) Jack and Jill. Go Annabel!

It’s so neat to me that the swing dance ecosystem has grown large enough to support many high quality events in the same season, sometimes even on the same weekend. It’s hard not to feel like I’m constantly missing out if I can’t make it to every event. It’s been especially difficult for me, because I’ve been deployed since the end of April. That’s 5 months away from dancing. I’m going crazy without it!

There are so many events going on all around the world and there’s (currently) no way for me to attend all of them. Thankfully, blogs, YouTube, Facebook, friends and in general, the Internet, have provided ways to keep me connected to the dance scene. I get to live vicariously through video posts, live updates, tweets and first-hand accounts of all of the action. I’ve even been able to stay involved by blogging and contributing to discussions on other blogs (and Yehoodi).

Best of all: I’m coming home! Deployment is wrapping up and I’ll be back on the dance floor by the end of the week.

This will bring several, new types of posts to this blog. I’ll be traveling as much as possible, so I’ll be posting event reviews as I get the chance. I’ll be interested to see how my dancing has changed (read: atrophied) in the last 5 months, so I’ll probably write about that as well. Additionally, I’ll also be posting on the “dandy” side of things. I’ve mostly written about dancers, dancing and dance events so far but I do intend to write about style too. I have a couple ideas floating around in this noggin of mine, so maybe some of them will see the light of day.

My first, big, dance weekend back is Jammin’ on the James in Richmond, VA with Casey Schneider & Mike Faltesek and Carla Heiney & Nick Williams. Jammin’ was one of my first workshop weekends back in 2007 and it was a great experience. I’m looking forward to another high quality event. I haven’t done a full weekend workshop with any of these instructors, so I’m really excited about that too. I’m sure they’ll be able to get my dancing back in gear. Maybe I should sign up for some private instruction. (yikes!)

As of right now, I’m signed up for Blues Muse, EBC, PittStop and Lindy Focus. If you see me on the dance floor, ask me for a dance, because we haven’t danced in ages!