We all know that dancing is beneficial to our physical well-being. Dance is more than just an artistic expression; it is a representation of people, nation, and culture. It tells a historical tale that has been a part of our lives, and much more so for those who have come before us.
Swing dance, in particular, is a collection of dances inspired by the swing style of jazz music popular from the 1920s to the 1940s, often known as the “swing age.”
In fact, until the latter half of the twentieth century, the word “swing dance” was rarely used to describe a group of dances.
“The term “swing dancing” is often extended to include other dances that do not have certain characteristics of traditional swing dances: West Coast Swing, Carolina Shag, East Coast Swing, Hand Dancing, Jive, Rock and Roll, Modern Jive, and other dances developed during the 1940s and later.”
Swing dancing is an old dance form that has never – and will never – go out of style.
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Some prestigious dance events, such as The US Open Swing Dance Championships, feature the theme. This style incorporates a dance routine as well as live jazz music.
In 2017, Sam West and Ellen Taylor wowed the audience and were awarded first place winners.
This powerhouse duo dazzled the crowd with their ageless dance movements during the USA Grand National Dance Championship, propelling them to first place.
They danced to Bill Pinkney’s “Gonna Move Across The River,” and their performance was nothing like you’d expect from dancers their age.
They proved to everyone that despite their age, they are someone to frighten and that they can still put younger performers to shame when it comes to swing dance.
West and Taylor have teamed up together for many years.
As it turned out, they first competed in The US Open Swing Dance Championships in 1999.
That alone shows their level of dancing prowess. And if you want to talk about the experience — these two have plenty!
Sam West began dancing at the age of nine, according to his bio.
He also has a long list of accomplishments in the field.
–“In 1994 Sam and partner, Melissa Calabrese, won the Non-Pro National title on their way to becoming the Overall National Shag Champions. Then in 1995 Sam partnered up with his sister, Sarah, and they went on to capture 8 Professional Division titles and 4 Overall titles. Sam also won the Pro and Overall Shag titles in 2001 with Jackie McGee, again in 2006, 2007 and 2008 with Jessica McAlhany, then in 2010, 2011, 2013 and 2017 with Leslie Jennings, and in 2014 and 2016 with Krystal Taylor Davis.”
Likewise, Ellen Taylor began dancing at the age of ten.
According to her bio, she has been teaching dance for a long time…
“She has traveled throughout the southeast teaching shag workshops for over 30 years. Ellen judged the National Shag Dance Championships for many years and has judged at the USA Grand Nationals Dance Championships.”
It’s no surprise they’re so outstanding!
The way they dance to the upbeat music validates that age is just a number. They’ve still got it! Their decades of experience simply shines through, and we see no way to stop or even slow down these exceptional dancers.
The video of their winning performance uploaded to YouTube has now garnered over 13 million views.
The elderly swing dancers have received thousands of comments from online viewers who have nothing but praise for them.
“Pure joy and fun. Lovely people enjoying their lives. what bliss. Bless them and all who enjoy dancing until well into old age. one can enjoy retirement with dancing,” one wrote.
See their winning swing dance performance in the video below.
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