Solo Jazz: Steps & Improvisation – 2 Week Mini-Course

For the next two week’s we’re going to take a little break from choreography to look at some fundamental repertoire to build our technique and then building in some improvisation exercises to develop recall and flow.

All welcome including absolute beginners – No experience necessary! 

WEEK 1 24th February
WEEK 2 2nd March

IMPORTANT: As with all of our solo classes, please bring with you a drink, a towel/fan, deodorant and a change of clothes especially if you’re staying on for the Balboa class after! A notebook is also highly recommended.

Mondays at 7:15pm | Upstairs at the Rising Sun Arts Centre.
Join our Solo Jazz Class facebook group for regular class updates and helpful links.

Learn to fly this February

Aerials with Michaela & Rupert

SATURDAY  8 FEBRUARY

Learn to fly this February with special guest teachers Michaela Delmonte & Rupert Sanford-Scutt from London. Aerials are an iconic part of Lindy Hop and this three hour workshop is the perfect introduction!

Over the course of the afternoon we’ll work through warm ups, jumping technique before starting with some simple air steps and increasing complexity as we build confidence and practice before finishing off with some Jam Circle work.

Bookings open now – Tickets include cake and refreshments + free entry to our Reading Swing Jam social in the evening. Check out full details on our webpage.

Next in Solo Jazz: The Tranky Doo

Next up on the routine rotation at RSJ Solo Jazz we’re taking at look at the Tranky Doo. The Tranky Doo is attributed to Pepsi Bethel, who can be seen performing a version of it in Mura Dehn’s documentary The Spirit Moves with Al Minns and Leon James. It’s a fun routine with lots of fundamental jazz steps and contains some super sweet musicality and variations that’s regularly performed at our swing social dances. Check out this contemporary version of the Tranky Stew performed by Remy Kouakou Kouame and Pontus Pearson – a mash up of the Tranky Doo and Mama Lu Park’s Stew (also coming up soon)!

All welcome! No experience necessary! Just wear comfy clothes and shoes that stay on your feet and bring a drink – a fan or towel might be useful tool.

WEEK 1:
27 January
Prep-Work – Getting a started by focusing on a couple of the trickier bits!
WEEK 2:
3 February
The Routine – Working our way through the choreo, part 1!
WEEK 3:
10 February
The Routine – Working our way through the choreo, part 2!
WEEK 4:
17 February
Finish & Polish – Finishing the routine and then practice, practice, practice!

 

Learn to swing dance with us!

We teach weekly swing dance classes on Wednesday evenings with Reading University Swing Dance Society, during term time. Our classes are fun, friendly and inclusive, an excellent way to meet new people and exercise your body and mind. Classes are followed by social dancing, a time to practice what you’ve learnt and get to know the community.

If you’ve ever wanted to give swing dancing a go, we’ve got two events this week that are just for you!

  • Absolutely no dance experience necessary for either event.
  • No need to come with a partner – we change partners frequently, so you’ll get to meet and dance with a variety of people.
  • Students and non-students welcome.

Free Swing Dance Taster

8.30pm, Wednesday 22nd January

Join us to find out what all the fuss is about and dip your toe in the wonderful world of swing dancing. This is a free taster, so why not just come along and give it a go!
Join the facebook event for notifications and updates.

Swing Dance Crash Course

11am, Sunday 26th January

We’re hosting this workshop for ANYONE wanting to join our Wednesday night beginner classes. It’ll be a crash course to get you up to speed and ready to join our Level 1 class part-way through the year. This 3-hour workshop is suitable for absolute beginners who are willing to dive in at the deep end or current students wanting to consolidate their fundamentals.
Join the facebook event for notifications and updates.

PRICE

Workshop is £10 for student/£15 for non-students.
Pay on the door (cash only please).

 

Both events will be taking place at the following venue:
Wessex Hall
Whiteknights Campus
University of Reading 
Whiteknights Road
Reading
RG6 6BQ

Nervous? Not sure? Need a little convincing? Check out these links:

Up Next in Solo Jazz: The Charleston Stroll!

For our next routine rotation we’ll be working through Sing Lim’s Charleston Stroll, performed to the Squirrel Nut Zippers’ ‘Put A Lid On It’. This is a great accessible routine with lots of staple Jazz steps, a good one for building up your repertoire if you’re new to Solo Jazz. All welcome including absolute beginners – No experience necessary! 

Class starts 7:15pm | Upstairs at the Rising Sun Arts Centre

WEEK 1: 13th January Prep Work – Getting a headstart on the tricky bits!
WEEK 2: 20th January The Routine – Working our way through the choreo!

NOTE: Wear comfortable shoes that stay on your feet (i.e. with laces or straps) and avoid heels (definitely no high heels/stilletos).  A change of clothes  is recommended especially if you’re staying on for Balboa after our class and especially a drink. A towel or fan may also be useful. 

December Swing Jam in support of Mind

In case you missed the announcement at our November Jam, we’re dedicating our next Reading Swing Jam on Saturday 14th December to raising awareness for mental health and donating our profits to the charity Mind.

We had enormous support last time we did this (check out the massive turnout for the survivor’s photo below!) and we’re hoping you’ll join us to make this year’s fundraiser even better!

Winter Meal

This year we’re celebrating our local swing dance community and the winter season with a cosy meal at Las Iguanas in partnership with Reading University Swing Dance Society!

If you’d like to join us, check out the details below and be sure to book your place before this Friday 22 November!

1.00pm, Sunday 8th December 2019
Las Iguanas Reading, Riverside, The Oracle

BOOK YOUR PLACE

  1. Email your name and preferred contact email address to readingswingjam@gmail.com – subject: Winter Meal
  2. Send us a £10 deposit via paypal to readingswingjam@gmail.com
  3. Pre-order your meal via the email we send to you after receive your deposit.

Note: To confirm our table we need to place a deposit of £10 per person by Friday 22nd November. This deposit will be taken off the bill at the end of the meal.

Up Next in Solo Jazz: Al & Leon’s Shim Sham

On the next routine rotation at RSJ Solo Jazz we’re taking a look at an alternative Shim Sham created by Al Minns and Leon James. Sometimes called The Savoy Shim Sham, this routine starts off feeling like deja vu before striking out on a complete tangent. It’s a great one for rhythm and jazz step combinations. Check out Al & Leon performing their Shim Sham.

All welcome! Knowledge of the vanilla Shim Sham will be an advantage but we’ll be teaching it from scratch over three weeks so no experience necessary.

WEEK 1:
18 November
The Routine – Getting a started from the top!
WEEK 2:
25 November
The Routine – Working our way through the choreo!
WEEK 3:
2 December
The Routine – Finishing off the choreo!
WEEK 4:
9 December
Practice & Polish – Revisiting any tricky bits then practice, practice, practice!

7:15pm | Upstairs at the Rising Sun Arts Centre.
Join our Solo Jazz Class facebook group for regular class updates and helpful links.

Upcoming Workshop: Solo Jazz with Nancy Hitzig

Join us this Saturday 9 November to level up your dancing with our Solo Jazz workshop with Nancy Hitzig, one of the most inspirational teachers in the UK!

It’s no secret that Solo Jazz can improve your partner dancing and over the course of the afternoon, Nancy will be guiding us through a a number of drills, moves, and exercises aimed at expanding your repertoire, improving your technique, increasing your knowledge of music structure and developing your improvisation skills! For full details and ticket link visit our workshops page.

BONUS:
Workshop entry includes free admittance to our Swing Jam social in the evening!

Up Next in Solo Jazz: The Shim Sham

shim-sham-facebook-cover-image

Starting Monday 4 November 2019

Possibly *the most* performed stroll in the modern swing dance community, the Shim Sham is a *must-know* solo jazz choreography. The Shim Sham has it’s roots in tap and it’s origins on the 1920’s stage.

Originally attributed to Leonard Reed and Willie Bryant but made famous by Lindy Hop legend Frankie Manning, the Shim Sham is now performed at social dances and events all over the world! Check out Frankie Manning leading the Shim Sham at Lindy Fest 2007.

All welcome – no experience necessary for Week 1! We’ll be working on the Shim Sham over two weeks. Where’s what you can expect each week:

WEEK 1:
4 NOVEMBER
Prep-Work
Getting a handle on the trickier steps and transitions!
WEEK 2:
11 NOVEMBER
Finishing Touches
Finishing off the choreo then practice, practice, practice!

7:15pm | Upstairs at the Rising Sun Arts Centre.
Join our Solo Jazz Class facebook group for regular class updates and helpful links.