The Swing Dance Academy – Teaching Team
The Perth Swing Dance Academy is a dance school focusing on swing dancing, vintage fashion, jazz music, and jazz history.
Our vision at SDA is to revive and share the joy of vintage dancing and recreate the suave sophistication of the fashion. Our classes not only teach you how to dance but cover information about the history of swing dancing; the music and musicians of the era; the styles and fashion; the current worldwide swing dancing community and any other interesting bits of information about that age that we learn.
Dancing the Lindy Hop is an amazing experience for all of us so we’re glad that we have the opportunity to pass on this incredible dance. We believe that the Lindy Hop went hand in hand with the big events of the time and so dancers should have some understanding of the culture that Lindy developed in.
Shawn can still remember being so terrified when going to his first swing dance lesson, he almost didn’t walk in! That was back in 2007 and he was hooked from day one. About 6 months later joined the Perth Swing Dance Society’s performance troupe, The Hullabaloo Hoppers and has been performing, competing and teaching Lindy Hop in Perth and internationally, ever since.
Since then he’s won the 2009 Swing Blast Jack & Jill, the 2009 Hullabaloo (Perth Lindy Exchange) Jack & Jill, a swing DJ battle or 2 and was coordinator of The Hullabaloo Hoppers for over 2 years. He’s also been off dancing in New York, Toronto, Montreal, New Orleans, Houston, North Carolina, Dubai, Kuala Lumpur and Melbourne.
Shawn and Elida were one of the 5 couples to make the semi finals at the 2013 Australian Hellzapoppin’ Prize! More recently, Shawn and Bron placed 4th at the Lindy Focus 30 second showcase in Asheville, North Carolina; Shawn placed 3rd in the TUX Jack and Jill in Toronto, Canada and Shawn was a semi finalist at O-Town Showdown in Ottawa, Canada! Over in Canada, Shawn and Kathleen competed in the 2014 Montreal Swing Riot and Toronto Blues Battle and has since been invited to teach at the 2015 Lindy Con in Arizona.
A fan of that old swingin’ jazz sound (particularly the faster ones), he can regularly be found swinging out at the various social dances in Perth. Always happy to dance with anyone from the pros to absolute beginners, he believes the key to a great dance is to have fun, engage with your partner, turn those ‘mistakes’ into your own special variation and smile!
Dabs’ dance experience started in Perth when she walked into a little bar called the Mustang. She then signed up for classes about 3 times a week and was … ADDICTED and has not stopped dancing since.
She has since attended workshops and danced in New York, Lindy Focus in North Carolina, New Orleans, Singapore, Hong Kong, Korea, and even danced on the Great Wall of China. Her goal in life is to dance in every country she travels to. She has often been heard saying, “I choose Balboa over Lindy!” She believes the key to dancing is to have fun, smile and laugh!
When she is not dancing, Dabsy is busy being a Media Geek teacher, working on her photography, and thinking of more ways to take over the world.
Bron VealeBron fell in love with Lindy Hop in 2009 when she started going to classes with a friend and quickly took to the social floor. Since her first Hulla exchange in 2010, Bron has jumped at the opportunity to venture further afield to attend workshops and socials and has travelled to SEA Jam in Malaysia and Thailand, Lindy Focus in North Carolina, Frankie 100 in New York, O-town Showdown in Ottawa, Camp Jitterbug in Seattle, Lindy Bout in Vancouver, Herrang Dance Camp and Snowball in Sweden.
Bron also taught for a number of dance scenes as she travelled across Canada; in Toronto, Moncton, Fredericton, Sackville, St John’s, Drumheller and Edmonton. Over the years her love of swing dance has grown to include blues, solo jazz, balboa and shag, and she enjoys djing at social events and slipping in a little bebop to temper the night. She loves to swing out at a racey BPM, and is often a survivor at late nights, fuelled by a thermos of hot tea spiced with endorphins.
Beth fell in love with the Lindy Hop straight after her first lesson back, when she was 18! She had plucked up the courage to head to her first class by herself, not knowing anyone there. Little did she know that they would not only become her dance partners but also some of her closest friends!
With her previous dance background in jazz, ballroom and contemporary, Beth has developed her own style and fancy footwork.
Beth’s been swing dancing her way around the globe including Melbourne, England, Germany, Slovakia and Sweden!
Michael began swing dancing in 2011, after a friend asked him if he knew what “the Lindy Hop” was. A quick Google later and he was dragged along to a class that very night! He’s been dancing ever since. A lot can change in two hours.
Since then, Michael has danced his merry way across four continents and a dozen cities, including New York; Dublin; San Francisco; and most recently Georgetown, Penang where he and several other Australian dancers starred in the new Channel 4 period drama “Indian Summers.”
Michael is also a freelance graphic designer, cake baker, prop builder, costume designer, seamster, amateur swing DJ, and is currently looking into home-based cobbling with little success. If you’ve ever come to a Swing Dance Academy event, chances are you’ve seen his work.
Michael’s favourite drink is Pear & Honey Iced Tea.
Ally has a passion for everything vintage! Starting off with a passion for hair and fashion, moving on to vintage interior decoration, it was only until she found the Lindy Hop, the original vintage dance, that she knew her passion was now complete. With the air of a Hollywood actress Ally, lives, breathes and dresses from that starry era.
Recently Ally went to Penang with a few other Perth dancers from SDA to dance in a period drama, “Indian Summers,” from the same producers as “Downton Abbey.”
In her spare time Ally writes her own vintage blog Vintage Valley.
Sara has long enjoyed all types of dance to all types of music, but she was first introduced to The Lindy Hop when her housemate dragged her along to a class in her hometown of Fremantle. Four weeks, one beginner course and several bowls of lollies later, Sara was addicted to swing dancing! For Sara it was a combination of the energy of swing-era music and the capacity for self expression that drew her to Lindy Hop. Sara quickly explored other niche swing dances including Collegiate Shag, Balboa, 1920s Charleston and Boogie Woogie and will often say that she is unable to choose a favourite as they are all so much fun!
Sara has taught and competed at both a local and international level; including teaching a workshop in Dubai, competing in Korea, winning the 2015 Fremantle Swing Festival Jack n Jill and being a finalist in the 2016 Paul Verevis Memorial Jack n Jill as part of Hullabaloo weekend. She has performed Lindy Hop, solo jazz and 1920s Charleston at several events including 2016 Fringe Festival.
With a focus on having fun, Sara is known for her creative musical expression, eating all the lollies and her penchant for sparkly clothes/shoes/things. When not out Hoppin’, Sara can be found busting moves to disco hits and 80s synth, enjoying a good cup of tea or browsing op shops for clothes with sequins.
Jose Do Campo
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