Little over 15 years ago**, 4 dancers came together to form what we all now know as Toronto Lindy Hop. It was formed to ‘Promote the dance and further unify the community” and it’s first official first dance was called “Jazzin up the Pier“. 15 years later, TLH is still going strong, hosting events & initiatives like Winterstock & Lindystock, Toronto Celebrates World Lindy Hop Day, Lindyworks, Dance Ambassadors program and our weekly “Swing Dance 411” on social media. None of these would be around today if it was not for the 4 names below. So a…..
Big thank you to our Founders (left to right):
Soloman Douglas, Mandi Gould, Jana Jedlovsky, Kathleen Le Roux (vintage photos)
AND to our Past Presidents:
Courteney St. John
Speaking of Presidents! I found this little Gem of a video (ahhh the internet is wonderful thing) of the funny swearing in of TLH President Courteney St. John at Lindystock circa 2009. Miranda (our current President) came be happy to know that we don’t do this tradition anymore (but I think we should).
Toronto Lindy Hop Scene Documentary-‘Hop to Toronto’
For a look into the world where Toronto Lindy Hop was still just a baby, check out this amazing Documentary created by Allan Munro on the ‘Toronto Lindy Hop’ Scene (there are 7 parts).
Here is another video I found of TLH’s first ever event ‘Jazzin up the Pier’-Birthday Jam time! Note: For more videos of the event, make sure you check out the above Documentary.
Another great video of the Toronto Lindy Hop Scene in the early days. Note: The sound is a bit wonky (but you can hear everything) and please also note that you can politely refuse a dance if you wish (this is an older video).
There was a bar on Yonge street called ‘Alley Katz’ which held regular Swing Nights as well, back in the early days. Here is a video I found of one such a night.
About the Swing Revival (TLH’s theme for the dance on February 27th):
The Swing Revival was a late 1990s period of renewed popular interest in swing and jump blues music and dance from the 1930s and 1940s as exemplified by Louis Prima, often mixed with a more contemporary rock,rockabilly or ska sound, known also as neo-swing or retro swing.
The whole thing sort of got kicked off by the Gap “Khaki” commercial (seen below).
Dance floors filled up, Lindy Hop Studios opened up and everyone was sporting a look from their favorite movie of that time. Swingers, Swing Kids, League of their Own, Blast from the Past. It was a fun time for everyone involved. So come on out on February 27th, as we celebrate TLH’s 15th Anniversary with a little throwback to this time period.
Lastly, I will leave you with the Big Bad Voodoo Daddies. See you all soon!
Final Final Note:
For Pictures of past Toronto Lindy Hop Events check out our Facebook Albums-HERE
For Videos of past TLH Events & Activities check our YouTube Page-HERE
**This Saturday we will be celebrating 15 years as an “Official” organization and by Official I mean “with the government”, TLH is actually a bit older then 15 years (in the late 90s).