How Did Frankie Manning Build Dance

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Frankie Manning:
The Ambassador of Lindy Hop
Haylie M. Galvan
Wichita State University

Dancing can be defined by moving rhythmically to sounds or music, usually following a set of steps. It has been around since the beginning of the neo? Over the years many styles of dance has formed with the variations of different techniques. It allows a dancer to express themselves in a variety of different ways. Frankie Manning was a huge role model when it came to swing dancing during the jazz age. In the 1980s, renewal interests in swing dance brought Manning out again to choreography and teach. Today he continues to teach dance still continuing to keep jazz alive. He choreographed many well-known pieces that are …show more content…

Manning had dancing in his blood and was born to dance. He was born in Jacksonville, Florida in 1914. Considering his mother was a dancer, Manning got into dance at a very young age. He was heavenly influenced by danced when he would spend his summers in Aiken, South Carolina with his father on the farm. Every Saturday, many locals would come to the farm to play music on the front porch with harmonicas and a washtub bass. Soon after moving to Harlem in the 1920’s, he started dancing at the Alhambra Ballroom to music usually from Vernon Andrade. In 1927 he eventually moved on to the Renaissance Ballroom, which had a crowd of older teenagers with the live swing music of the Claude Hopkins Orchestra. Ultimately moving onto the Savoy Ballroom, which was famously known for its great dancers and bands. He would continue to frequent the Savoy throughout the 1930s, eventually becoming a dancer in the elite group; "Kat's Corner." Soon after in 1935, he became part of Whitey's Lindy Hoppers; dance group …show more content…

In 1935, Manning created the first aerial swing dance called the “air step.” According to Ambrosio (2010), dance when the female partner gets thrown in the air while landing in time with the music. He revealed this type of style in a dance contest, where he performed it with his dance partner, Frieda Washington. Soon after his choreographer career took off he went on to create Lindy Hop routine for many of his groups he performed with. He is responsible for several of the innovations of Lindy Hop step and style, such as dancing at a sharp angle to the ground like a track runner, instead of in an upright position. As said by Frankie Manning (2007) “I don’t believe in a right and a wrong way to do a step.” When choreographing, he would take the unique approach of letting each individual dancer do their own special steps instead of forcing everyone to be the same. All of his dances would go off a 16-count sequence they all of his dancers had memorized. In an interview conducted by Cohen (2009), Manning dances to the beat of the music and to the mood of the music. His posture would change with his interpretation of the mood. Over the course of his lifetime he has choreographed several dances for Broadway shows and dance companies for instance, the Alvin Ailey Dance Company. All done in a wide variety of location ranging from London, Sweden, and even New York. One of his biggest

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