Thursday, August 26

If you’ve been to our Blues Clinics, you’ve probably seen these two lovely ladies, Sara Gaynor and Khrysti Smyth, helping out with instruction. We’re going to go ahead and put them through their paces in the instructor spotlight for the first time at Blues Union, and hope you can join us in supporting them! Their lessons will be:

Get Grounded! (Intermediate, 7:30-8:15)

Most of us have experienced many classes that focus on connect……ing with our dance partner, but what about our other major connection points? Like with the floor? Sara and Khrysti feel that all of our movement comes from the ground up, so they’ll help you develop better balance and control by exploring how we connect with the ground as we’re dancing and how to apply that to your connection with your partner.

Back to Basics (Beginner, 8:15-9:00)

Sara and Khrysti have similar dance philosophy, namely that anything is possible with a solid foundation. And that it’s a good idea to break down your basics and build them up again on a regular basis because they are always changing! So whether this is your first time on the floor, or you’ve been doing this for years, check out their take on the basics of blues dance and see if they can rock YOUR foundation.

After the lessons, Khrysti and our very own master of food Stephen York will be teaming up to DJ a couple of excellent sets for us. Amelia will be providing brownies, and if enough people bug Carl Herrmann about it he’ll be providing bacon!

As always, the lessons are $5 and the dance is $5.

Thursday, August 19

This week we have Joy Arico traveling all the way from Rochester, NY to DJ a set and teach us some lessons! Without further ado, those lessons are:

Scattering JOY (Intermediate, 7:30-8:15):

This lesson delves deeper into Blues connection. This is a topic rarely discussed that is very dear to my heart. As leads and follows, there is a tendency at every level to add unwanted noise to the dance. For follows, we will discuss and pra…ctice techniques to filter out the noise and dance the intended lead. Learning to do this first; will help you clearly add shines without interrupting your connection later. For leads,we will discuss and practice techniques that help add clarity. You know what you want, so should your follow.

Embracing Close Embrace (Beginner, 8:15-9:00)

In this class we will share the 3 main shapes of Blues connection, and practice movement in each. The focus will be on relaxation and moving with your partner in close embrace. After this lesson you should be able to have a fun night of dancing with strangers, and friends at Blues Union!

After the lessons, Tim Lewandowski will be joining Joy at the DJ booth to bring us a whole jarful of Blues.

As always, the dance is $5, and the lessons beforehand are $5.

Thursday, August 12

This week we have the lovely Carsie Blanton coming to us all the way from Philadelphia, PA. She’s going to put both her musician and dancer hat on at once to give us…

Matching the Mood of the Music (Intermediate, 7:30-8:15):

How can you be musical without knowing lots of “moves”? Shape the vocabulary you already have to fit any song! In this class, we’ll apply some simple ideas to some simple vocabulary, and come up with infinite ways to match the music. In the intermediate version of this, we’ll be practicing how to take the same vocabulary and shape it to fit in different tempos and styles, including Chicago, Delta, and slow jazz.

Matching the Mood of the Music (Beginner, 8:15-9:00):

How can you be musical without knowing lots of “moves”? Shape the vocabulary you already have to fit any song! In this class, we’ll apply some simple ideas to some simple vocabulary, and come up with infinite ways to match the music. In the beginner version of this, we’ll work on shaping our basic to match the moods and dynamics of different songs.

After the lessons, Amy Kucharik will be teaming up with Carsie to bring us an excellent mix of Boston and Philly Blues! Margaret and Amelia will also be teaming up, to bring us lots of foodstuffs.

As always, the dance is $5, and the lessons before the dance are $5.

Thursday, August 5

Hello everyone!

It’s once again time for our monthly Blues Clinic. Each month we take the time to put as many of our instructors in one room as possible, and each instructor dances with each Blues Clinic attendee and gives them personalized feedback on how to improve their dancing. Everybody then gets to practice what they’ve learned over the course of the session (7:30 to 9:00), and can go back to an instructor and ask questions… as many times as they want. At the same time as all this, we have an hour-and-a-half long beginner class running on one side of the room, making it a perfect way to bring friends into Blues dancing.

After the Blues Clinic, we’ll have Khrysti Smyth and Alex Abdoualev at the DJ booth!

Steve is once again going fancy with his food planning – this Thursday we’ll have decorative dessert night, with food provided by Karen, Micki, Adrienne, and Marina!

Thursday, July 22

This week Julie Brown and Shawn Hershey will be teaming up to bring us a couple of awesome lessons:

Shape Shiftin’ (Intermediate, 7:30-8:15):

Usually, we dance face-to-face, but there are plenty of other ways to dance! Why not play around with some more interesting shapes? Front-to…-back, offset, side-to-front, who knows?! We’ll work on crazy connections and shape changes, while discussing what helps us stay connected, no matter how we’re facing.

Ballroomin’ for Beginners (Beginner, 8:15-9:00):

There are a two main overarching styles of Blues dancing, Jukin’ and Ballroomin’. Ballroomin’ is intended to be big and graceful, making gentle fun of traditional Ballroom style. In this lesson we’ll give you some moves to get around the floor classily when the music gets jazzy and sassy.

This week the DJ table is shared by an old favorite and some fresh blood – Julie Brown will be tearing it up alongside Steve “Foodman” York! Come support Steve during his first set at Blues Union!

During the dance, Steve, Micki and Adrienne will be providing yummy baked goods.

As always, the lessons cost $5 and the dance costs $5. If you sign up for both, the price is a low, low… $10!