Aleks and Dina are social swing dancers and hobby musicians. Aleks started dancing the Lindy Hop in 2013 in his hometown of Smolensk, Russia, where he also taught Lindy Hop. After he moved to Canada in 2018 he integrated his European Lindy background with his North American Lindy experience. Dina started dancing in 2016 in Toronto after seeing some Lindy Hoppers dancing in the wild. With her love for swing jazz, it didn't take long for her to dive deep into the dance, and to eventually start teaching.
Aleks and Dina have been dancing, practicing, travelling, choreographing and competing together since 2018. They have placed at and won multiple local and international Lindy Hop competitions.
Alex stumbled upon the lovely world of Lindy Hop in November of 2017 in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan and has been hooked ever since. Quickly, she started teaching, travelling, and contributing as a scene leader for the University of Saskatchewan Swing Dance Club. Alex is inspired by the rich history of Lindy Hop and swing music and hopes to spread some of that passion to her students. She looks to empower followers in her classes while sharing the secret ingredients that create the best social dances - no matter if it’s your first class or your 100th! Alex recently moved to Toronto in July of 2021 and can’t wait to spend more time learning and growing with the warm and welcoming crew at Swing Toronto.
Anne began swing dancing in 2010 and has no plans of stopping. Originally from New Mexico, she organized and taught classes for the swing dance club at New Mexico State University. Upon coming to Toronto in 2014, she became involved with the Lindy Hop scene, teaching at Dovercourt house and DJing at events across the city. She has also been a co-organizer for Dance Alchemy, the fusion dance community in Toronto, and organized social dances and workshop weekends, taught lessons and regularly Dj’d. As a member of many other social dance communities, she uses this toolkit of other dance styles to inform her follow technique and styling. She’s attended dance events across Canada, the United States and Europe, and can’t wait to travel for dancing again.
Strangers at a dance convinced Brady to go to his first Lindy Hop weekend, the Alberta Inspiration Weekend in February 2014. He’s been dancing non-stop ever since: Competing, DJing, performing, teaching, closing out dances and going to over 50 dance weekends. He’s fascinated with the basics of Swing Dance. As a teacher, he’s obsessively searching for functional movements, tangible metrics and clear terminology to create great basics. Because phrases like "Work on your basics" won’t mean much if you don't know what components to work on! As a dancer, he is heavily inspired by Dax Hock and Sarah Breck’s LA-Style of Lindy Hop, and driven by exploring the boundaries of partner connection and partnership. He is excited to meet, dance and teach alongside all of you!
Catherine started dancing at a young age, but discovered swing dancing much later when a friend introduced her to the Swing Dance Club at Western University in 2009. Since then, Catherine set out to learn from many different teachers and explore many different styles of social dancing, from Lindy Hop to Balboa, Shag, Jive, and Vernacular Jazz. As a teacher, Catherine aims to help students tap into the joy and collaboration at the heart of swing dancing. She believes in supporting every dancer's unique dance journey, using technique as a tool to build confidence and a foundation for self-expression.
Charlie has been swing dancing in dance halls, bars, and house parties in Toronto for most of his adult life. After taking his first lesson in the late 1990s, Charlie continued to learn Lindy Hop and Balboa in local classes and international workshops. Now, he enjoys teaching others and introducing them to the world of vintage dancing. Charlie has taught at Lindy Hop Revolution, performed at many events, and danced in a Rockabilly video. He also had a cocktail—The Charlie Foster—named after him at the Dovercourt House.
Eva has been a fan of traditional jazz and big band since the age of 5. From the moment she heard the tunes of the era’s greats such as Fats Waller, Hoagy Carmichael, Cole Porter, she knew that this sound was a perfect fit for her personality. She has been part of the swing dance community since 2009, eager to keep progressing her skills and to connect with others in the scene. She won the January 18, 2020 Roaring Twenties Charleston contest in Toronto. She also loves to play her favourite jazz tunes on her ukulele.
Gabrielle has been a happy Lindy/Blues/Balboa enthusiast since 2010 and is excited to be part of the post pandemic swing revival. She has attended many dance workshop weekends including Cal Bal (the annual California Balboa Weekend), ABW (All Bal Weekend), Rhythm Shuffle, Tinker Bal and SONH (Swing Out New Hampshire), and has taken many dance classes and private lessons.
Lawrence began swing dancing over 15 years ago and remains addicted to this day. Having attended over 250 dance events in more than 30 countries, he continues to be a sought-after lead on the social dance floor. He has received private or class training from world-renowned teachers such as Frankie Manning, Sylvia Sykes, Lennart Westerlund, Valerie Salstrom, and Jo Hoffberg, to name just a few. He has been part of various dance troupes, has taught countless classes, and often DJs at local dances. He was one of the main organizers of the last Toronto Lindy Exchange (aka "TOE Jam") and was a member of the Toronto Lindy Hop executive team. He attributes his knack for the musicality and physicality of Lindy Hop to his years of classical piano and involvement in various sports.
In the fall of 2016 Mark was forced to attend a Lindy Hop class on a date... and has hardly stopped dancing since. He quickly came to love the energy, playfulness, connection, and depth that the dance had to offer. Mark always strives to learn, improve, compete, and perform as a dancer. He has experience teaching a wide range of group and private classes, as well as choreographing group performance projects.
As a teacher, Mark emphasizes connection – both to the music and to one’s partner. He especially enjoys introducing his love of the dance to new dancers, and to have them out and feeling good on the social floor.
Olga fell in love with Lindy Hop back in 2013 and loves nothing more than sharing this love with everyone around. Since then she has been teaching Lindy Hop classes and workshops in the USA and internationally, competing and placing at Lindy Hop championships, dancing socially and smiling all night long!
She is only in Toronto for a few weeks.
Rizwan Dar (Riz) has been swing dancing for over 12 years and has traveled far and wide just for the joy of dancing and to get the guidance from the best instructors. He has been teaching swing dance and spreading the joy of social dancing over the years in Toronto.
Simon teaches and loves Lindy Hop, 1920s dances, Ragtime dances, 19th century dances, traditional Viennese Waltz, Polka and Cross-step Waltz. He also teaches and loves Air Steps, lifts, drops, dips, floorials, and thinks this is some of the best and most fun stuff in dance.
Simon has been teaching dance for over 20 years, co-founded Toronto's Lindy Hop scene in late 1995 and 96, has taught many classes and workshops, has presented many live band swing dance parties, has organized many dance workshop weekends since the mid 1990s, and has attended many workshops with the world's most highly regarded Lindy Hop teachers.
Simon is the coordinator of Swing Toronto and of Waltz Toronto.