Up Next at Solo Jazz: The Big Apple!

From Monday 14th May we’re going to be tackling the king of solo jazz routines, The Big Apple!

It started out as a call and response dance but was then immortalised as a stand alone routine when choreographed by Frankie Manning and performed by Whitey’s Lindy Hoppers for the 1939 film Keep Punchin’. It’s now known and danced by lindy hoppers all over the world and is soon to join the Reading swing scene repertoire!

This is a beast of a routine so we ask attendees to arrive early so we can start promptly and make the most of the time we have.

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. We highly recommend a notebook and pen to make notes as we go along!

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

Lindy Hop Workshop with Richard & Michaela

We’re delighted to be hosting this Lindy Hop workshop with these wonderful Londoners, Richard Pucci from Up Town Swing and Michaela Delmonte from Swing Patrol! Full details to come but for now find your booking partner and save the date!

Workshop tickets also include entry to our Swing Jam social in the evening at the same venue. Tickets go on sale 6pm, 15 January. For more info, check out the Workshops page and join the facebook event for event updates.

Classes Restart in January!

Happy New Year! We can’t wait to dance our way in to 2018 with you!

Classes restart this week with RSJ Thursday Blues on 4th January downstairs at the Purple Turtle from 7pm for Level 2 and 7:30pm for Level 1 (Beginners).

Solo Jazz returns on the 8th January with the Charleston Stroll at 7:15pm at The Rising Sun Arts Centre.

And lastly Lindy Hop with Reading University Swing Dance Society (RUSDS) kicks off on the 10th January from 7:30pm for Level 2 and 8:30pm for Level 1!

Next in Solo Jazz: The Stew!

The Stew Facebook Cover Image

We’ll once again be warming up the Rising Sun Arts Centre this winter with one of our favourite endorphine-rushes, The Stew. This choreography is attributed to Mama Lu Parks, a woman who grew up in the swing heyday and was instrumental in teaching the next generations and keeping Swing dancing alive in the 50s-70’s.

If you’re looking for an adrenaline hit, this routine is for you! All welcome! We’ll be teaching it from scratch starting on Monday 27th November and gradually building up the pace.

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

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

Next at Solo Jazz: Remy’s Caribbean Shim Sham

RSJ Solo Jazz  returns to our usual haunt the Rising Sun Arts Centre on Monday 13th November and we’re heating things up with Remy Kouakou Kouame’s Caribbean Shim Sham. A full body workout, this Shim Sham is guaranteed to make you sweat and a smile in equal measure! Check out Remy leading the Caribbean Shim Sham at Lindy Focus.

All welcome! No previous jazz experience necessary!
Knowledge of the vanilla Shim Sham will be an advantage but not necessary as we’ll be teaching it from scratch.

IMPORTANT: This is a high energy class. Please bring with you a drink, a towel/fan, deodorant and a change of clothes if you’re staying on for the Balboa class after!

WEEK 1:
13 Nov
The Routine – Getting a started from the top!
WEEK 2:
20 Nov
Finish & Practice – Finishing the routine and then practice, practice, practice!

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.

No Class: Wednesday 1st November

Our Lindy Hop class with Reading University Swing Dance Society is taking a break for this week only. We’ll be back in full swing next week.

In the meantime, you can get your dance fix with partnered Blues 7:30pm on Thursday downstairs at the Purple Turtle and on Sunday from 2pm at the Rising Sun Arts Centre with our Al & Leon Shim Sham workshop. Check out our Class webpage and Workshop webpage for details.

Learn the Savoy Shim Sham with RSJ!

The Savoy Shim Sham, choreographed by Al Minns and Leon James, is a wonderful routine full of core Solo Jazz steps and some fancy variations too and we can’t wait to teach it at our next afternoon workshop.

Here’s a clip of Lindy Hop legends Al and Leon leading their Shim Sham in the 1950s:

WHEN: Sunday 5th November 2017, 2pm

LEVEL: All welcome – Knowledge of the vanilla Shim Sham will be helpful. This workshop will move a little faster than our vanilla Shim Sham workshop last weekend.

TICKETS: £15 each, pay on the door.

VENUE: Downstairs at the Rising Sun Arts Centre.

Full details on our Workshops page. Be sure to join the facebook event for updates and notifications!

Learn the Shim Sham with RSJ!

Possibly *the most* performed stroll in the contemporary Swing Dance community, the Shim Sham is a *must-know*.

Join us for this 2.5hour workshop where we’ll be teaching it from scratch, making sure you have plenty of time to practice with us so you can nail this routine in one afternoon!

Here’s a clip of Lindy Hop legend Frankie Manning leading the Shim Sham at Lindy Fest 2007:

LEVEL: All welcome – No experience necessary! We’ll be breaking down every step from scratch so no previous Solo Jazz knowledge required!

WHAT TO BRING: Wear comfy clothes and shoes that stay on your feet. Bring a notebook, pen and plent of water – a fan or towel might be useful too.

TICKETS: £10 each, pay on the door.

VENUE: Downstairs at the Rising Sun Arts Centre.

Full details on our Workshops page. Be sure to join the facebook event for updates and notifications!

Alive & Kicking: Charity Film Screening

EVENT UPDATE!

A massive thanks to everyone that came to the film showing! It was great to enjoy the film with you all.

We raised £32.62 on the day and more importantly raised awareness and sparked many conversations about mental health.

11am, Sunday 15th October 2017
Art Department Lecture Theatre, UoR

In conjunction with World Mental Health Day this month, Reading University Swing Dance Society and Reading Swing Jam are hosting a special charity screening of the recently released Swing dance documentary, Alive and Kicking.

Alive and Kicking is a feature-length film that takes an inside look into the culture of swing dancing and the characters who make it special. It explores the culture surrounding Swing dance from the emergence of the Lindy Hop to the modern day international phenomenon. The film follows the growth of Swing dance from its purely African-American roots as an art form, to countries all over the world. Alive and Kicking looks at the lives of the Swing dancers themselves to find their personal stories and why this dance fills them with joy.

Join us for this special screening from 11am at the Art Department Lecture Theatre on the Whiteknights Campus of the University of Reading (map). Street-side entry via Earley Gate and best bus route is the Number 17.

Entry to the film is £2. No advance booking required just turn up an pay on the door. Correct change is appreciated. All money raised from this event will be donated to mental health charity Mind, who provide advice and support as well as campaigning to improve services, raise awareness and promote understanding. Further donations on the day are also gratefully received.

After the screening we’ll be walking down together to Sunday Swing at the Oakford Social Club to enjoy an afternoon of dining and dancing.