The JiveSwing Blog!

Posts about Events

Tuesday, 1st July, 2014

JiveSwing at Fling Festival 2014

JiveSwing teacher Steve Merchant, armed with his right hand partner Jodie Sharman, travelled to introduce to innocent bystanders and revellers, at the annual Fling Festival this year. The Fling, attracting thousands of people each year and held in the same park as the V Festival, in Chelmsford, saw lots of budding dancers flock to the  dance tent where steve taught a series of Lindy Hop and Charleston Classes.

JiveSwing Teacher Steve Merchant  – Teaching at the Fling Festival 2014

The organisers and everyone watching, were very happy, as they saw festival goers, aided by Michael Willis, Sam Rummey and supporting dancers from local JiveSwing classes,  infect everyone with their enthusiasm. :-)

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Monday, 30th June, 2014

Vintage Tea Dance – Kent

Two dancers, Sarah Spratt and Kate Whittington, from JiveSwing’s Charlie’s Angels, a 20 strong all female group, led by Charlotte Middlemiss, were performing at a vintage tea dance in Canterbury. The tea dance was organised by the MS Centre in Kent to raise awareness of MS and funds for the centre.

Sarah Spratt and Kate Whittington from JiveSwing’s Charlie’s Angels at MS Centre, Canterbury Kent

As usual, dancers from the JiveSwing community, travelled to support the event, along with dancers from Kent, Essex, Hertfordshire and London, who came to see the show. The organisors said “The Charlie’s Angels girls put on a great show and the JiveSwing dancers were fab!”

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Tuesday, 3rd June, 2014


What an amazing All-Dayer, without doubt the best atmosphere by far. After 7 years of running this event, we took a bold move of moving it to Beechen Grove Baptist Church. It was a really nice day of workshops, with two levels and taster classes in Shag, Dips & Tricks, Authentic Jazz etc, with an evening dance to celebrate Frankie 100. Bringing the amazing 10 piece Billy Bros. Swing Orchestra from Italy, was a HUGE investment, but boy did they swing.. It was just like Basie or Chic Webb, playing to a packed dance floor.

Photo by William Weaver

The feedback from everyone, regarding both the workshops and the evening dance, has been really positive both on the night and after. :-)

Thanks to all teachers, Charlie’s Angels Authentic Jazz Dance Group, Billy Bros. Swing Orchestra and everyone who attended and contributed to such an amazing night.

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Sunday, 4th May, 2014

Harlem Nights with The Polka Dot Dolls

What a night.. Oh what a Harlem Nights..!! The feedback from Harlem Nights in Watford, has been great. The night kicked off, with a fun class for people of all ages, levels and abilities, with JiveSwing teacher Steve Merchant, sometimes known as Stephanie.. :-)

The Polka Dot Dolls were on form, looking great and definitely in full swing last weekend, as they kept all the swing dancers on the floor all night. So much so that the photographer abandoned his camera in favour of dancing…. lol..

                                      The Polka Dot Dolls performing at Harlem Nights

The night was run by JiveSwing Watford’s favourite mummy Carol Bungay and JiveSwing DJ Michael Proctor, who kept the night going, before, between and after the band sets, with the help of his protege Fiona Benson. Great night had by all. :-)

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Wednesday, 19th February, 2014

Dancing with Norma Miller

Dancing with the Queen of Swing.. The Legendary, Ms Norma Miller..

After an amazing 3 nights, at GNSH 2014, we thought things simply couldn’t get any better. It was Sunday night and Chazz, accompanied by Norma Miller, led the final Shim Sham of the weekend, live to the Billy Bros Swingin’ Orchestra, playing Ain’t what you do.. It sounded just like Jimmy Lunceford.

Joseph Sewell, taking Norma Miller for what was to be, a careful dance
Photo by William Weaver

Anyway.. Whilst Joseph, was holding onto Norma very carefully, to slowly escort her off the dance floor, the Band Leader, Big Daddy Maurizio, announced, “this is a special request for Ms Norma Miller, Shiny Stockings”.. Norma’s face lit up, so Joseph bravely asked “would you like to have a gentle dance?”.. Certainly she replied, in a way only Norma could. Knowing that he had the responsibility of the Legendary, Queen of Swing at stake, Joseph carefully held Norma into a steady position in order to do a slow side to side two step. She rested her head on him, for  a few seconds, whilst Joseph calculated in his mind, what simple steps would be safe to try..  Everyone made space, as we were  careful to ensure she didn’t fall.

Norma Miller shout’s “Swing me Out!” to Joseph Sewell at GNSH
Photo By: William Weaver

 However, as the band started to Swing, it seemed that Norma had a ‘Hallelujah moment’ and to everyone’s surprise she smiled and shouted to Joseph “swing me out!” Joseph thought she was joking, so he smiled at her.. Then she shouted again, “Swing me Out!”  Joseph said “Norma, are you sure?”, then she laughed and let herself loose out of the close hold and swung out, forward, with her arms waving around, smiling at everyone. Joseph reports.. “At first I was afraid (but not petrified)”. Everyone stopped and watched in amazement, as non-one couldn’t believe what was happening. After about 30 seconds, just when things started to get exciting and crowds surrounded Norma and Joseph with camera’s, she suddenly stopped (a bit like Tom Hanks in Forest Gump lol..) and said.. “That’s your lot folks.”

But that’s not all.. She turned and said “Thank You” Joseph.. I’ve not swung out like that since Frankie.. :-)

Norma Miller in Day at the Races

For those few minutes, it seemed like we’d been projected back into the past of the 1930’s Savoy Ballroom. For Joseph, no other dance that night, would  have felt the same..

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