Big Band Swing weekend 2013
We are back from the annual Big Band Swing weekend in Asheville. It was a beautiful weekend in the mountains of North Carolina – very sunny with a cool crisp chill in the air, the perfect weather for strolling. We chose to stay at the Renaissance Hotel downtown so we could explore the quaint shops and work of local artisans. We always take time to eat at Posana Cafe, a gluten free restaurant located in the downtown area.
Friday night we took a cab to the Grove Park Inn to enjoy the dance with two of our students, Jack and Rosie. The dance was held from 8:00 to 11:00 pm and tickets were an affordable $35 per person.
Our evening was hosted by the world famous Glenn Miller Orchestra, which is well known for their Swing and Foxtrot music. Though the band played mostly Swing and Foxtrot songs, they “borrowed” several Waltz and Latin songs each hour to provide some dance variety. This year we noticed the participants were of a wider age group than in the past. We saw several teenagers who were expertly dancing the lindy hop. We also saw octogenarians swaying to the music of their youth. The dance floor was full, but not over-crowded.
How much dance experience do you need to attend this event? We saw all levels of dance experience. Someone with a basic knowledge of swing would be able to enjoy the majority of the evening. We danced mostly swing or lindy hop with a few waltzes, foxtrots, cha-chas and one salsa. Attendees should have a basic understanding of dance etiquette where those who like to dance close stay in the middle and those who like to travel stay on the outside of the floor. Our monthly dances are a good place to practice dance etiquette.
We’re always asked about the appropriate clothing to wear to this event. People were dressed in varying degrees of formality. Most were in semi-formal wear. However, we saw several couples dressed very formally with men in tuxes and women in beautiful evening gowns. There were also several people in jeans. I would recommend wearing something you will be comfortable dancing in so you can enjoy the event. This year I wore a shorter dress for swing with low heeled, comfortable shoes so I could dance all night. Ryan wore a cream colored shirt and multi-colored tie with black pants and vest.
Interested in attending the dance with us next year? Swing is a very versatile dance that you can use for most popular music. Join us for a six week group class in East Coast Swing beginning on February 23rd.
Remember to dance with joy!