JATW 2002
After much faffing about trying to organise transport (decided on getting the coach in the end - which was actually quite a cheap and cheerful alternative), we eventually managed to find our way to Gloucester at about 6pm. Me always having to deal with visa problems and therefor avoiding swing weekends on the continent, I try my best to go to the UK ones ... so this was my 3rd JATW, and nothing less enjoyable than my first two. Within 30seconds of walking into the Arts centre to register we were bumping into familiar faces from London and elsewhere - the more times you go, the more people you recognise ... and its such a great vibe. The pre-band "intermediate-ish" warmup class was given by Lennart (Westerlund) with some cool charleston variations - that i've forgotten already! [doesn't help that i was leading! - apologies to Mark for me being such an inept lead...].

Chateu Jive - Airth Castle, Scotland

Soon here gossips and reviews from this exciting weekend in an amazing location, organized by Boogie Nights. Sunny weather, 4 star hotel and boogie classes. Massages, Heaven and Hell party, fry-ups in the morning...and pix pix pix!! Check on the Photos Pages and for more about it.

Here is our first holiday review by a very enthusiastic Sian and her Balboa in Toulouse experience:

I'm still in a state of euphoria from this past weekend in Toulouse........a couple of us decided to go for the Pink City Balboa Festival this weekend in Toulouse and I really have to say that it was the most enjoyable experience for me!! The people were exceptionally friendly and that made all the difference for me since I don't even understand French (except for the usual salutations). Despite my language disability, I was made to feel most welcomed. A very warm feeling to have indeed - especially in a foreign country!! The teachers were exceptional - Sylvia Sykes (who's learnt balboa from some of the best and has been dancing/teaching balboa for the past 15 years) and Jason Chritodoulou from the USA, Franck Balbin, Anne-Helene and Bernard Cavasa from France. I never knew my brain (or my feet) could absorb so much in two days packed with balboa lessons. They also had a tap class (Franck Balbin), Smooth Style (Dean Collins) (Sylvia and Jason) and Hip Hop (Jason) (which has now spurred me onto thinking that I want to take up Hip Hop classes!!). Teachers aside - the standard of the balboa dancers/students there was also exceptional. Despite my initial hesitations of not being able to understandthe lessons since some of them were in French, I soon found that I didn't even need to since the leads were all so wonderful - I just did my little bit and followed!! I take my hat off to the wonderful leads!! What more could I expect from such a wonderful weekend away - wonderful people, wonderful dancing (with wonderful dancers), wonderful food and wonderful weather. And you KNOW that it was a good weekend when you're still grinning like a cheshire cat on the London tube home!! I will definitely be back for more next year should they have another one of these events! I would definitely recommend this weekend to any balboa enthusiast!!
Sian xx"

And Paula's view too:

As another participant of this weekend...I can second Sian's sentiments. The folks in toulouse were fabulous hosts, the teachers were very, very good (if you are remotely interested in Balboa - Silvia is fantastic!) and the other students were exceptional...all round a wonderful time had by all. For those of you who may not have discovered the joys of Balboa then I can speak as a recent convert - it is far more than just hold, step, step,
step, hold... This weekend I was introduced to the idea of balboa as an alternative style
for - wait for it - slow music! For the unbelievers amongst you think blues meets balboa...a very good thing! If anyone is thinking of going to next years balboa festival I can recommend it without reservation and if you are thinking of going to the Toulouse swing festival in September I can attest to the wonderful hospitality of the locals.

Melbourne Swing Scene for downunder travelers

While it may be a little far for some of you to travel I can highly recommend Sunday nights at Mayfields in Melbourne (that's australia not florida folks :).
Paula - aka australian correspondant for swingbunch :)

Check out FaceBook's Swing Dancers of London for events
Stray Cats live at Lady Luck, Sept 27th
click to buy it!

Lindy Hop World Championship Result 2002