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May 28, 2008 11:10 AM   Subscribe

For some, being a WWII veteran and spending 30+ years at the US Postal Service would be a career. But Frankie Manning is more well known for dancing, inventing the air step, choreography, winning a Tony, being one of the few living Savoy Ballroom dancers and, at age 94, still teaching regularly.

More YouTubings: Frankie leading the Shim Sham, in A Day At the Races and with Whitey's Lindy Hoppers.
posted by turbodog (3 comments total) 9 users marked this as a favorite

 
Wow. Fantastic post, the highlight of my day, thank you!
posted by subgear at 6:44 PM on May 28, 2008 [1 favorite]


Most people probably have no idea how important Frankie has been to the revival of swing. He's a wonder.

And dancers so respect him. Celebrations of his birthday each May have been a regular feature of the swing scene for at least the past ten to fifteen years. You can find videos on YouTube of birthday jams at Roseland Ballroom in NYC (check this or this to get an idea of the size of the party) featuring Frankie dancing with all the women in succession. Here is a YouTube video of lindyhoppers from around the world dancing to Count Basie's Shiny Stockings, Frankie's favorite swing number, for his 88th birthday. It is so cool -- it has been edited so that all of the dance displays are synched to the music even as it cuts across locations.

For his 89th and 90th birthdays, weeklong ocean cruises out of Miami were organized and attended by dancers and instructors from around the world. And I met my wife on the first of these cruises.

So, yeah, Frankie's quite something in my book.
posted by A-Train at 10:49 AM on May 30, 2008


Hey, I think I was out on the floor when they filmed the Oregon segment for the Shiny Stockings video!
posted by turbodog at 12:14 PM on June 3, 2008


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