...all work and no play...
After my normal day-job hours, one of my hobbies is to help manage the local swing dance and blues dance clubs as an organizer, dancer, instructor, and a DJ. It is a great way to combine my marketing experiences as well as meeting tons of new faces and creating life-long friends. Oh, and great exercise too.
AS AN ORGANIZER...
For over a decade I have been the driving force in the Virginia Beach/Norfolk, VA area with the creation of local swing dance and blues dance clubs: SwingVirginia and Dirt Cheap Blues Dance. These volunteer organizations started out as merely calendar listings and then became the "Go To" place for swing and blues dancing in the Hampton Roads area for lessons, workshops, exchanges, and special events. Whether providing dancers, articles, instruction, or education, we all enjoy spreading the love of dancing.
Our dance clubs have been hired for the entertainment - or as we call it "exhibitions" - for many organizations, businesses, celebrations, hangar dances, openings, festivals, performances, and productions by providing dancers to help teach group classes, dress in vintage attire, or just "fill the dance floor'".
AS A DANCER...
I grew up playing jazz and big band music at the age of 10 years old. Who knew that decides later I'd be dancing to the same music on dance floors all across the country. He has been the driving force as the swing dance resource in Hampton Roads since 2001. I started SwingVirginia.com as a swing dance events calendar and over the years it has evolved to the go-to place for swing dance related activities. The SwingVirginia crew has instructed thousands of dancers over the years and has been featured entertainment at special events all across Hampton Roads.
I have traveled all across the country learning, instructing, DJing, and spread the love of swing dance wherever possible. I love teaching people not just the footwork, but also the historical significance of swing dance and its influence on American society over the past century.
I also am a national Lindy Hop and Jitterbug Champion. Been there, done that, got the t-shirt. My partners and I have taught hundreds of lessons & workshops all across the country spreading the love of swing dance and blues dance that has kept people on their toes for over a century.
AS AN INSTRUCTOR...
I have over a decade of experience in the various forms of swing dance and blues dance: Lindy Hop, Blues Dance, East Coast Swing, Jitterbug, Charleston, Collegiate Shag, West Coast Swing, and Balboa.
My teaching style has developed into a form of "Lindy Zen" where I help help dancers LEARN to the history of swing dance as well as the patterns, not just regurgitate the steps. I will help you learn how to dance with the music by having a wealth of knowledge of all styles of swing and blues. It's one of my greatest pleasures to watch a dancer's light bulb turn on and have them create new moves and patterns.
Even after swing dancing for over 16 years now, I am still having a great ole time. My goal is to make everyone I dance with smile and maybe even laugh a little. Because if it isn’t fun, why do it?
From Foundations to Advanced Techniques, my teaching style obeys and breaks the rules by encouraging dancers to learn on your own, not just repeat the steps taught in class. I have traveled all across the country to learn as much as I could and bring back that knowledge. Bring a notebook!
Be forewarned, I am a coffee-addict and if you combine it with A.D.D., be prepared for a bucket-load of fun-filled lessons with plenty of wicked combinations, cool moves, and bizarre techniques all to keep YOUR dance bag-of-tricks growing.
Now my primary role is to share the wealth of dance knowledge and spread the love of dance by having way too much fun teaching and dancing.
AS A DJ, (not a jukebox)
Originally from Chicago, I grew up playing the sounds of Glenn Miller, Dave Brubeck, and Louis Jordan. Who knew decades later I'd be dancing to the same songs. After transplanting to Virginia Beach, I was easily hooked into swing dance in 2001. With Chicago Blues still in my heart and a blues harp in my pocket, I found the calling into Blues Dance after my first exchange's late night blues room.
For almost two decades, I have been dancing & DJing all over the country at workshops, exchanges, house parties, and wherever music is to be played. As the organizer for local swing dance events, VBLX & Dirt Cheap Blues Exchange and countless dance workshops, I continue keeping the swing and blues alive in our local scene and other scenes.
My lack of sleep helps me grow my library by finding right songs to keep your butt on the dance floor. No matter what your Blues flavor, I'll crank out those "must-dance" tunes, plus some curveballs that make you say, "What the hell is this? But ooooo, let's dance".