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DWF15-462517Press Release 

Toronto, ON, April 30, 2009 – Toronto’s Lindy Hop community has planned a fundraiser to honour the Ambassador of Lindy Hop, Frankie Manning, who passed away on Monday April 27, 2009, less than a month shy of his 95th birthday.

A special dance, featuring lessons and performances inspired by Frankie Manning, will be held on Saturday, May 9, 2009, at the Dovercourt House (805 Dovercourt Road). The event will start with Lindy Hop lessons at 7pm and 8pm (no partner necessary). A tribute to Frankie’s life will be presented at 9pm, followed by live music and dancing at 10pm. Admission is $20.

Frankie Manning was born on May 26, 1914, and grew up in Harlem with the Savoy Ballroom as his backyard. A fixture at the Savoy Ballroom in the 1930’s, Frankie was a major force behind the development of Swing dance. He toured the world with jazz greats including Ella Fitzgerald, Sarah Vaughn, Duke Ellington, Count Basie and Cab Calloway. Frankie performed in films including Everybody Sings and Hellzapoppin’. In 1937, he gave a command performance for King George VI. Life Magazine featured Frankie in a 1941 article that chronicled the emergence of Lindy Hop.

As the swing era came to a close in the 1950’s Frankie settled into a career with the United States Postal Service. In 1986 a renewed interest in Lindy Hop brought Frankie back on the scene and set him globe-trotting, spreading his own brand of dance magic through workshops and lectures. He had a close relationship with Toronto and taught several workshops here, most recently in 2008. Frankie’s fabulous dancing and Cheshire smile have inspired generations of Lindy Hop enthusiasts worldwide.

“Frankie Manning embodied the soul of Lindy Hop and had the power to unite people worldwide with his passion. To be around Frankie was to experience joy – a joy that transcended dancing and reached to the core of life itself. While he is no longer with us, his spirit will live on and continue to inspire people for generations to come,” Krister Shalm, President, Toronto Lindy Hop.

All proceeds will be donated to the Frankie Manning Fund, a foundation that promotes Lindy Hop and swing music globally.

For additional information or to arrange interviews contact Arthur Lulu at (647) 268-5858.

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