The Big Apple: A brief history of a dance that’s harder than it looks!

Mary-Anne SlezacekContributors

In March, I attended Muriel’s super-intensive three-hour Big Apple workshop at the Observatory Community Centre. I’m going to be honest: it was hard. There were moments in which I was praying for time to speed up so I could be released from the mental and physical ordeal. But those moments were few; mostly I tried to maximise every second in …

Swinging Out Far from Home: A Cape Town Lindy Hopper in Vienna.

Mark ChimesContributors

A month and a half ago I waved goodbye to my parents and boarded the plane to Austria. Though filled with excitement, I knew there would be much I’d miss about South Africa, and the Cape Town Swing Dance community featured prominently in my mind.  I’ve been part of this community since I attended the Stellenbosch classes with Sarah back …

Dancing My Troubles Away

Mary-Anne SlezacekContributors

I’m not exaggerating when I say that swing dance has saved me. It’s changed my life completely, and I’m so thankful. I won’t bore you with the details, but last year was a struggle. I moved continents and had my heart broken to a million pieces. My only source of income was the online business I’d started so that I …

What is Swing?

Brendan ArgentUncategorized

Broadly speaking, swing is a type of jazz music that originated in the 1920s in America. The music gained mainstream popularity in the mid 1930s and until the mid 1940s it was the popular music of the time. Band leaders like Count Basie, Benny Goodman and Chick Webb were the superstars of their time. Swing is the big band music …

Cape Town Swing on Fine Music Radio

Sarah BoydUncategorized Leave a Comment

Editors note: This post was first published in 2019, following the release of the album Echoes of Sophiatown. We are re-publishing it in anticipation of the next chapter of the Echoes project, with the intention of bringing CTS newcomers up to date. Last week we sat down with Rodney Trudgeon of Fine Music Radio, Cape Town’s premier station for classical …

Echoes of Sophiatown: Preserve, Revive and Celebrate.

Sarah BoydUncategorized Leave a Comment

With so much history, knowledge and culture at stake, the the aim of the Echoes project is to pay tribute to the musicians, dancers, and other South Africans who were part of the swing era, and ensure that their legacy lives on for a new audience of jazz lovers, history buffs, cultural aficionados, and swing dancers.  As an organisation dedicated …

Sophiatown: Where South Africa Started Swinging.

Sarah BoydUncategorized Leave a Comment

Little Harlem. While New York had the Harlem Renaissance in the 1920s, here in South Africa, Sophiatown ushered in a new wave of music, dance and culture. Known as Little Harlem, Sophiatown was the centre of South African jazz culture from the 1930s to 50s. It was the training ground for jazz legends like Hugh Masekela, Miriam Makeba, Dolly Rathebe, …

Yana Sanamyantz in Cape Town

murielUncategorized

Oh gosh are we excited to welcome Yana Sanamyantz next week for a swing dance residency in Cape Town! Jazz dancer extraordinaire and great friend of the CTS scene, Yana Sanamyantz, arrives next week for a full 3-month residency with her partner, to get stuck into the dance community here by offering classes, workshops and private lessons! We’ve had several residencies in Cape Town over the years (including …