In the hard time of COVID-19 a lot of dance schools and communities had to cancel classes, workshops, socials and festivals. It’s a very challenging moment for organizers, teachers and musicians who have to cope with financial loss. Bobby White at Swungover wrote a great guide to contributing to the situation in a positive way. We really recommend reading it and using these ideas.
On top of them we want to gather the ways in which you as a dancer can still improve your skills at home.
Practice solo dancing
Just like that. We all know that you always put it aside. It’s a great opportunity to finally perfect the steps that come after bridge in Big Apple.
Solo dancing is something that is often overlooked by dancers but what makes a huge difference in the quality of your movement. Try to go through some basic steps, connect them and adapt to the music.
take Online private classes
Email your favorite traveling or local teacher and ask them about the possibility of doing a video class or a feedback of your dancing. They can also help you to prepare a training program or put a choreography together. There is a special google doc dedicated to gathering contact info of full-time teachers hit by the cancellations of events that offer private online classes.
Listen to the music
It’s a great time to listen to more music, check out more songs of your favourite artists. Learn about musicality. We recommend Swing this Music youtube channel that analyzes songs and dances – simply amazing!
We will also quote Bobby White as he made a great point about musicians that need support as well:
Start buying modern swing bands’ music online, support their Patreon, or start taking Skype music lessons. The music is great, and you’re going to need it to practice. Also, email or Facebook message your favorite musicians and see if they are available to give online lessons. Now’s a good time to learn a jazz instrument.
Go through recaps
Some of them are on your phone, some in cloud and often the majority of recaps is on your friend’s phone because you didn’t have any memory left. Sort your recaps (we wrote about the ways to do that here) and choose a few that you want to work on. Then… just do it!
learn about history
Watch old movies, read about the history of swing dancing and catch up with the books you’ve been setting aside for a while. There are also a lot of interviews with Old Timers on youtube and our favorite podcasts The Track by Ryan Swift (check out not only Old Timers but all of the interviews, they are amazing!).
Watch videos of shows and competitions online. Inspire yourself. Analyze. Use the slow speed. Share with others. Compare trends year to year.
Take online courses
There are plenty online platforms you can learn Lindy Hop, Solo Jazz, Collegiate Shag and Balboa from. A lot of teachers run Patreon. Check them out our guide to virtual swing dance classes.