Hundreds of dancers swinging by Lismore for Camp Oz
SWINGERS from all over the country are set to descend on Lismore at the end of the month for the annual Swing Camp Oz.
And no, we're not talking about the kind that involves putting your keys in a bowl.
The week-long swing dance camp will involve workshops with world-renowned dance teachers, professional performances and social dances until the wee hours of the morning.
Swing Camp Oz, as the name suggest, is all about getting enthusiastic dancers together with top-tier teachers to learn and improve their swing dance styles.
Swing dance is a range of styles that developed along with swing jazz music in the 1920s and 1940s.
Voluntary coordinator Mary McDermott said it was the camp's second year in Lismore after a seven-year hiatus where the event was held in Adelaide.
She said the camp, which started in Lismore in 2001, had grown from about 20 teachers and participants to almost 200.
"It's a very big event on the swing dance scene and it has been a big event in the development of swing dancing in Australia," Ms McDermott said.
"Because it was only fairly small when it started and it was attended a lot in those early days by teachers and so it really influenced and inspired the dance scene in this country."
Ms McDermott said the teachers who would be holding workshops were professionals from around the world who compete in world titles and have taught extensively.
She said another highlight of the camp was the social dancing until the early hours of the morning.
"It's a great chance for people to dance with the best dancers in Australia," she said.
"They have performances on some nights with dance groups from different places.
"And on the last night the teachers will all do a performance and we have a Jack and Jill competition which means you go in the competition but you don't know who your partner will be.
"On the last night we've also got a band from Brisbane coming down."
Ms McDermott said first-time swing dancers should probably give the camp a miss, as even the beginner classes required some experience.
Swing Camp Oz will kick off on January 22 and finishes on January 31.
For more information or to register go to www.swingcampoz.com