Instructors

Midwest Lindy Fest is proud to continually offer exceptional instruction.  2019 will be no different as we bring back some of your favorites while mixing in instructors that are new to MWLF and some that are up-and-coming.  As always, we select instructors that match our perspectives: We dance with people and we dance with the music. 

Ariel Goh

Ariel Goh found swing dance in 2010 and never looked back. She currently travels the world teaching and performing, and holds competition titles at the International Lindy Hop Championships, Camp Jitterbug, Lindy Bout, Midwest Lindy Fest, Inspiration Weekend, Torino Swing Festival, and more.

When at home in Seattle, she teaches weekly classes in lindy hop, charleston, balboa, and solo jazz dance through The Syncopation Foundation. She also instructs swing dance at the University of Washington and coaches two performance teams.

As a teacher, Ariel prioritizes clear and detailed instruction, an inclusive classroom setting, connection to the music, and a foundation in the history of the dance. She loves helping dancers find their individual voices within partnerships, as well as express themselves through solo dance! Her teaching specialties include deep partner connection technique, conditioning & fitness for dancers, and solo jazz choreography.

Ariel is a firm believer that you don’t have to have prior dance training to excel in swing dance. Her own movement background includes martial arts, weight lifting, barre-style fitness, and boffer LARP.

Ben White

Ben White has been addicted to all things swing since 2004. He has studied Lindy Hop, Balboa, Tap, and  Solo Jazz dance under masters from the original swing era and worked with world class contemporary swing dancers.

He has had success both locally and internationally as a competitor and coach placing in contests such as The International Lindy Hop Championships, the National Jitterbug Championships, Camp Jitterbug, and many more.  He has also been involved in more than 100 productions as a performer, producer, choreographer, and technician.

Ben is well known for his clear instruction and ability to break down and communicate technique while keeping classes entertaining and engaging.  His instructional resume includes co-founding the venue Eastside Stomp where he works as manager and instructor, teaching at the University of Washington and other schools, and traveling to teach and perform at workshops all over the world.​​

Jenna Applegarth

Jenna first started dancing when she was still in diapers. She began swing dancing some many years later, luckily no longer in diapers. Jenna continues to expand her dancing repertoire and share her love and knowledge of these dances with others. Although she enjoys pretty much any type of dancing and music you can move to, her first love is Lindy Hop. Her energy and passion create the perfect environment for learning, creating challenging yet applicable lessons.

Jenna has attended, coordinated, and taught various workshops and exchanges all across the globe. Some of her favorite highlights are performing at Benaroya Hall in The Jump Session Show and teaching for Lincoln Center’s Midsummer Night Swing. Above all else she believes that learning to dance should be fun. With over 10 years of teaching/coaching experience, she loves finding new ways to connect with other dancers on the floor and in the classroom.

Jon Tigert

Jon Tigert found swing dancing at the tender age of 15 and never looked back. Now, somewhat older than 15, Jon shares his knowledge of the dance all over the United States and the World. You may know him from his roles at events such as Lindy Focus, Lindy Fest, The Canadian Swing Dance Championships, The Chinese Lindy Hop Championships, Herrang Dance Camp, The International Lindy Hop Championships and many more. Known for his concise language, historical knowledge and and infinite supply of dad jokes, Jon's classes are immensely informative and entertaining. Beyond teaching, Jon is often seen behind the microphone as a well-known MC, behind the computer as a DJ, or behind the drum kit playing and singing with various bands.

Ann Mony

Visit Ann on Facebook.

Ann Mony strives to make every dance a unique and memorable one. Known for her playful style and the joy that she exudes while dancing, she travels as often as she can to share her love of Lindy Hop through classes, competitions, performances, and social dances. She is committed to preserving the improvisational link between lindy hop and jazz, empowering followers, and celebrating the cultural wealth of vernacular jazz dances.

Ann fell madly in love with swing dancing in 2002. Over the next few years in Montreal she honed her skills as a dancer, competitor, and teacher. She holds titles from such events as the International Lindy Hop Championships, American Lindy Hop Championships, Canadian Lindy Hop Championships, Camp Jitterbug, and Lindy Focus. Through her classes and performances she hopes to add to the legacy of unique and powerful dancers in Lindy Hop.

Ann is also an active organizer and scene-builder in San Francisco. She is the education coordinator at the 9:20 Special, an organizer for Fog City Stomp and The Bootleggers Ball, and a member of a feisty dance troupe called Fancy Pants.

Ryan Calloway

Visit Ryan and Ann's website!

Ryan Calloway shines on the dance floor. His enthusiasm, buoyant rhythm and boundless creativity make him one of San Francisco’s best known Lindy Hop leaders. Most nights you’ll find him pounding the floor at one of the city’s local jazz and swing clubs.

Ryan’s goal as a teacher is to inspire his students to find their own creativity. With an open and warm style, he welcomes individuals to not only learn the traditions of vintage jazz dance, but to add to it as well. Having worked for seven years as a visual effects artist for ILM, you might have caught some of his work on the silver screen. It’s this type of artistry that is so apparent in his dancing. It’s not just his technique that shines, it’s his attention to the aesthetic quality as well. For more on Ryan’s art, check out his site at www.ryancallowayart.com or on Instagram @ryancallowayart.

Ryan is also passionate about carrying on the tradition of hot jazz music. He is the clarinetist and bandleader of the San Francisco based band, The Hot Baked Goods.

Lindy Hop has taken Ryan Calloway around the world, having taught in Singapore and throughout the US. But you’ll only need to look as far as his smile to see how much he truly loves the dance.

Learn more about Ryan and Ann at their website!

Dee Daniels-Locke

Dee started swing dancing at the age of four with her dad in the basement while wearing her mom’s heels and her favorite plaid skirt. For over a decade she’s shared her love of Lindy Hop with dancers young and old. She has became an influential member of the Twin Cities scene, and continues to inspire students at all levels. She looks to motivate new generations of swing dancers by organizing programs for Minnesota’s youth.

Dee loves to shake her thang and she wants you to shake yours, too. She encourages self-expression on the dance floor, and prides herself on making each dance unique to the musical experience and partner, creating an authentic dance conversation. She advocates individual creativity as the true spirit of Lindy Hop.

She has taught, performed and choreographed around the Midwest. She thought it was exceptionally cool to be invited to dance for the Dedication of the World War II Memorial in Washington, DC. But even more ridiculously exhilarating was the opportunity to assist Frankie Manning in teaching a class! Most important to know is that Dee never refuses peanut M&Ms, and will gladly become a lifelong friend to anyone who offers her that bite-sized chocolate heaven.

Charlie Wieprecht

Charlie Wieprecht began his dance journey in his hometown of Baltimore, crawling up the ranks there and becoming one of the main instructors at the Mobtown Ballroom. Charlie's style can be described as smooth and dynamic (i.e. kicking and jumping). He values connection with his partner and being a lead who listens. He is known by his friends as a walking "safe space", so it's unsurprising that he brings that quality to the dance floor. When not at the Ballroom he performs and teaches as a member of Guardian Dance, a dance troupe directed by Breai Mason-Campbell. When not dancing, he enjoys giving historical walking tours of Baltimore to whoever will listen

Irina Amzashvili

Dancing has always been a passion for Irina, her expression completely and boundlessly inspired by music. She began learning Lindy Hop in 2009 at the age of 15 and fell in love with it after her first night of social dancing. Shortly thereafter, her passion for swing dancing expanded to include Balboa, Collegiate Shag, and solo Jazz. Since her start in Orange County, California, Irina has taught these dances all across the U.S. as well as in Europe, Asia, and Australia. As a teacher her goal is to patiently guide her students through building solid foundations and technique as well as inspiring individuality in personal movement. Irina's greatest joy as a teacher is to see her students progress with their dancing, no matter the increment.

Anthony Chen

Anthony's first ingress into the performing arts was at age 8 when his parents convinced him to learn and perform Chinese lion dances. He then stumbled upon breakdancing during a national speech and debate tournament in middle school, and at the age of 16, he had his first foray into swing dancing alongside other young interns from a research laboratory. Since then, he has trained in other dance styles ranging from hip-hop to West Coast Swing, but most of all he enjoys using this background to expand upon his technique and creativity in Lindy Hop. On the social dance floor he is known to be playful, musical, creative, and clear. He holds first place titles from events such as Lindyfest and Lone Star Championships, Montreal Swing Riot, Ultimate Lindy Hop Showdown, Lindy Focus, and International Lindy Hop Championships. Combined with his professional background in education, his love of both leading and following have been instrumental to making the classes that he teaches both clear and intuitive. He is an active scene builder in his community and founded Salt City Swing, where he teaches locally.

Robert Bell

bellrobert.com | Live music class Band Leader

Robert Bell has provided music for lindy hoppers from Seattle to D.C. during social dances, invitationals, competitions and classes. As a soloist or bandleader his musicality evolved while providing live music and teaching classes with dancers across many styles. He is active playing hot club jazz with the Twin Cities Hot Club, traditional jazz with the Southside Aces, world music on guitar, oud and banjo with Café Accordion Orchestra and swing with the Robert Bell Hot Swing Combo. Working with lindy hoppers including Peter Strom, Dax Hock, Mike Faltesek, Peter Loggins, tap dancers Kalena Miller and Chester Whitmore, burlesque artists including Lily Verlaine, Gina Louise and Sweetpea as well as solo guitar for Corepower Yoga all contribute and inspire Robert to explore the connectedness between people, movement and music.