What makes a swing great great?


Well-Known Member
When browsing the web today, I came across the web site of a female tap dancer and lindy hopper with a very impressive bio. I read through and was way impressed, especially With her tap experience and credits.

The lindy section said that she,"counts amongst her teachers and inspirations: Jean Veloz, Ralph Phelps, Frankie Manning, Norma Miller, Louise Thwaite, The Rhythm Hot Shots, Betty Wood, and Barbara Rice and Sam Militello. " Maybe true. I'm slueless, I admit, so I have no idea. For obvious reasons, I won't post the person's name. That would spoil all the fun. LOL.

At least, according to that web site, this lindy hopper is in some pretty exalted company. So now I just have to ask, what makes a swing dancer or teacher one of the truly great, rather than just one of the also-rans? Experience? Fame? Training? A disctinctive style? What do you think?
Lindy Hop culture more consciously acknowledges and is influenced by its roots than are many other dances, which explains part of it. Frankie and Norma are links to the original era of Lindy, and very distinctive and engaging personalities as well. The Rhythm Hot Shots were an early part of, and influence on the Lindy revival in the 90s.
Ability pure and "simple"...

Of course what gives them that ability can be any number of things.

But who you know and who you trained under and what titles you hold are nothing more than wsigns that one is potentially above the curve. I've seen people with national and international titles, studied under some of the greats, and taught all over that I don't think can swing their way out of a paper bag, let alone recommend them as a teacher.


For that matter I know people with little formal training who are absolutely amazing dancers.

Like Chuck D says, "Don't believe the hype".
Certainly looks like it. Rusty is a very good lindy hop instructor and dancer... but she is absolutely phenominal at tap. I mean WOW!


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