Today about 50-60 lindy hoppers assembled in Manhattan to dance the "Shim Sham" line dance as part of the "Frankie Week" festivities taking place all over the globe. It was one of those remarkable days that make me grateful to live in New York and be a part of the lindy hop scene.
We gathered at 1pm at the info booth in the Grand Concourse of Grand Central Station, swing dancers arriving in vintage and dressy outfits eager to dance. As you can imagine, security in Grand Central is very tight, given the times we live in. Our strategy was to get in some quick photos of everyone in swing-y poses, form into a giant "95" and then hopefully shoot a couple of videos of us dancing the Shim Sham.
The photos went off well, but security wasn't going to let us dance in the concourse. Shorty Dave appealed to the Stationmaster, who was very resistant, but in the end succumbed to his charms and let us use a side passage that was being renovated to shoot our video. We did a couple of takes of the Shim Sham there, which almost looked like a movie set for the real Grand Concourse.
Pumped up from that experience, a bunch of us walked from there to Times Square to try and shoot more video and photos from Times Square. Through the timely intervention of my friend Lynn, we got the Times Square cop to let us do our video from the steps in front of the TKTS booth. We even got him to say Happy Birthday to Frankie!
There are few spots more "New York" than Times Square and Grand Central, so I'm proud to say we achieved 100% of our objectives! It was a real team effort, with Akemi on videography; Dave leading the choreography and crowd corralling; Lynn, Swifty and Will on photography; and many, many enthusiastic dancers.