TOWestCoast Blog

09JUL16 – Galactic Dance Dust

I started writing this while on the West Coast: Santa Clara, California – where I was attending Ben and Cameo’s spectacular event: Swingtacular. The “Galactic Show” on Saturday night featured a number of Pro-Am routines (including our own Lewis Chan’s with Sarah Vann Drake), a Rising Star division, a Hip Hop battle (learned that day), John Kirkconnell and Alyssa Glanville’s ‘Catch and Release’ piece to live music, and more – finishing with a group performance of Kyle and Sarah’s US Open-winning routine to Brother Yusef’s Johnny B-Good. Oh, and Brother Yusef played three or four short sets during the social dancing, as did Noah Guthrie. In fact there was live music (mixed in with amazing deejayed sets) every night – part of Ben’s vision for the event, which keeps growing every year – and the social dancing starts relatively early – a bonus to bleary-eyed time-zone challenged dancers like myself. I’m Swingtacularly Swungover and looking forward to sharing my Galactic Dance Dust….


Tuesday night: classes continue at Dovercourt House
6:30-8:00 p.m. Last of the scheduled Flash Mob classes – $20 to drop in (Please note that we’ve added an EXTRA class next week, August 16th)
8:00-9:00 p.m. Last in the current WCS*Fundamentals series – no drop-ins (except for Rinse and Repeat students) – a new series starts August 23rd
~8:45 p.m. The dancing starts with our new-minted Fundamentals grads J and continues until midnight. Just $5 or free for students
At the Dovercourt House 805 Dovercourt Rd., (still on the 2nd floor – but that will change in September)
Thursday night: classes continue at City Dance Corps
Nelson Clarke and Kyle Fitzgerald are teaching two levels of WCS. Please contact Dana Gudelis ( ) to register.
8:30-9:30 p.m.  Building Your Foundation
9:30-10:30 p.m. Improving Your Foundation
Please see the calendar for full details
City Dance Corps studios are located at 489 Queen St. West

Saturday night: classes and dancing in Ancaster
Joanna Swanson teaching and deejaying
7:00-7:45 p.m. Beginner WCS lesson
7:45-8:30 p.m. Intermediate WCS lesson
8:30 p.m. – midnight Dancing!!
Facebook Event Page or please see the calendar
The Marshall Memorial Church, 20 Gilbert Avenue in Ancaster (near Hamilton)

Sunday night: classes and social dancing ongoing at Rhythm and Motion
Shelley Saxena teaches classes followed by two hours of fun social dancing
5:00-6:00 p.m.  Basics Plus (please check with Shelley about eligibility to join)
6:00-7:00 p.m.  Intermediate Lesson
7:00-9:00 p.m.  Social Dancing or see the calendar
Rhythm and Motion, 3352 Dundas Street West at Runnymede


Tuesday, August 16th **schedule change**!!
6:30-8:00 p.m. We’ve added an EXTRA Flash Mob class; Shelley will be teaching on her own, and hosting the dance party starting at 9:00 p.m.  Just $5 for registered Flash Mob Class participants, including the dance – $20 for drop-in students
8:00-9:00 p.m. *Private* lesson time for Shelley (Flash Mobbers grab a drink or a bite to eat)
9:00 p.m. until midnight – Social dancing – $5
Please see the calendar and/or let Shelley or me know if you have any questions.
Dovercourt House – 805 Dovercourt Road (west of Ossington, north of Bloor)


Tuesday, August 23rd – Regular classes resume – sort of 🙂
6:30-7:15 p.m.  WCS*HD with Shelley Saxena – seven weeks*/six classes (until October 4th) $95
7:15-8:00 p.m.  FLASH MOB REHEARSAL!!  Everybody get in the pool!
8:00-9:00 p.m.  WCS*Fundamentals – seven weeks*/six classes (until October 4th) $75
(*September 13 is a JUST DANCE: no classes/just dancing)
You can pre-register for classes here
Full details about classes:

Wednesday, August 31st – Midtown Blues Jam
Mark Stafford, Ken Yoshioka and “friends” (drop-in musicians/singers) are at Alleycatz every Wednesday night.  I’ve been invited to introduce the Blues-listening crowd to West Coast Swing dancing, though the music itself would appeal to a variety of swing and Blues dancers.  We had a blast last week and will be doing it again later this month.  It’s not a late night.  The venue is air-conditioned with a great floor for dancing. There’s a bar – if you want to have a drink, and good food if you want to have a bite to eat.
7:00 – ~7:45 p.m.   First set and dancing
~7:45/8:00 p.m.    Dance lesson with yours truly (very basic – just for fun!)
~8:30-10:00 p.m.  Second set – more dancing!!
(Invite your Blues/East Coast Swing and Lindy Hop friends, too!)
Alleycatz is located at 2409 Yonge Street

Saturday, September 3rd – FLASH MOB!!
We’ll be performing the International West Coast Swing Flash Mob – twice (to accommodate all the Followers who learned the choreography). Location is still Nathan Phillips Square. Plan to meet in the morning for additional practice and briefing. Still need photographers and videogaphers to commit to being there and documenting our performance(s).
Facebook Event or please see the calendar

Starting, September 24th – Three’s Company Team Rehearsals
Looking for a few good men – and twice as many women 🙂

While I was at Swingtacular I met with Arjay Centano to choreograph a team routine for “threesomes”: one Leader, two Followers.  Very cool and “theatrical” – I think it will a blast to perform.  Ideally we’ll have it ready for Spotlight New Year’s Eve where I have discounted table seats for the team.

Rehearsals will be at the Dovercourt House on Saturday mornings:
September 24            1st Floor          10:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
October 1                   1st Floor          10:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
October 8                   1st Floor          10:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
(Montreal Westie Fest weekend – no rehearsal)
October 22                 1st Floor          10:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
October 29                 1st Floor          10:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
November 5              1st Floor          10:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
November 12            1st Floor          10:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m.

(Westie-Con and C.A.S.H. Bash/US Open weekends – no rehearsals)
December 10             1st Floor          10:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
December 17             1st Floor          10:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
December 24             1st Floor          10:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
Oh – and why Arjay?




International West Coast Swing Flash Mob – September 3rd
Montreal Westie Fest – October 14-16
Westie-Con – November 17-20
Spotlight Dance Celebration – December 30, 2016-January 2, 2017
Check the
calendar for more!