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Honored and grateful to have great guests teachers.

Chester Whitmore

Chester will be offering an exciting masterclass in solo jazz dance titled "The Jazz Evolution: Dance & Movement (1900 - 2023)."

Chester has been dancing since 1974 and is a protege of Fayard Nicholas (of the Nicholas Brothers). Throughout his career, Chester has traveled the world as a dancer, teacher, performer, choreographer, director, stuntman, and entertainer. His choreography has been featured in music videos for artists like Boys II Men, Sugar Ray, and Teena Marie, and he has worked with iconic figures such as Savion Glover, MC Hammer, and Prince, among others. In addition to being a renowned drummer and band leader, he has collaborated with the best in the entertainment industry.

Chester has performed with his dance company, Black Ballet Jazz, and has shared the stage with the Lionel Hampton Orchestra, the Duke Ellington Orchestra, the Count Basie Orchestra, and the great Miles Davis. Chester exudes boundless positive energy and an unbridled passion for dance, making him a true showman. His contributions are too numerous to list them all. The only way to truly grasp his talent is to see him in action!

Don't miss this unique opportunity to learn and dance with a jazz and entertainment legend. We are thrilled to have Chester Whitmore at the Lindy Maya Festival!

Tim Collins & Ruchi Aviles

Tim and Ruchi, will be offering a Lindy Hop course focused on partner connection.

Tim's love for swing dance began in 1998 during his high school years. He quickly embarked on a journey across the country and around the world to attend dance festivals, constantly seeking to expand his knowledge. Tim spent his summers working at the Herrang Dance Camp in Sweden from 2001 to 2012. In 2002, he studied Traditional African Dance in Ghana for a year. Between 2007 and 2012, Tim split his time between Europe and India, teaching Lindy Hop full-time and working in the Bollywood film industry in Mumbai. Since co-founding Swing México in 2012 with Ruchi and Pao, Tim has been dedicated to building the swing dance community in Mexico. He has organized numerous national and international events and festivals and taught swing dance across Latin America.

Ruchi is an architect and designer who discovered her wellspring of creativity in dance. Alongside her architectural career, she spent seven years traveling extensively throughout Europe, learning from influential masters of the global Swing scene. They inspired her to establish a national swing dance scene in Mexico and sow the magic of Lindy Hop and African-American Swing culture in uncharted territory.

In the early 2010s, Ruchi, along with her sister Pao, founded SWING MEXICO, and together with Tim, they have organized countless events, festivals, performances, and competitions at both national and international levels. They have significantly contributed to the dance community and the dissemination of this culture in Mexico.

Tim and Ruchi bring a wealth of experience and a deep passion for Lindy Hop to the festival, and we're thrilled to have them as part of our lineup!

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Ben White & Andrea Gordon

Andrea Gordon and Ben White are renowned dancers, teachers, and guest ambassadors for the second edition of the Lindy Maya Fest.

Andrea Gordon is a passionate social dancer and comedian, a lover of music, rhythm, and connection. She started dancing Lindy Hop in 2006, traveling and competing in events over the years, winning multiple awards in national competitions. Her style is deeply rooted in the values of African American vernacular dances. Andrea is known for her active participation in the jazz dance community, promoting inclusion and equity.

Ben White has been immersed in the world of swing since 2004 and has been a full-time instructor for over a decade. He has studied Lindy Hop, Balboa, Tap, and Solo Jazz with masters from the original swing era and has worked with world-class contemporary swing dancers. Ben is famous for his ability to break down and communicate technique clearly, keeping classes entertaining and engaging. He is the Artistic Director at The Syncopation Foundation and spends several months each year teaching swing dance internationally.

Together, Andrea and Ben will bring their extensive experience and enthusiasm to the Lindy Maya Fest, offering workshops and performances that capture the essence of swing and jazz dance while creating an inclusive and welcoming space for all participants.

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Elaine Buchignani & Stefan Huyn

Elaine Buchignani is a full-time Lindy Hop & Jazz Dance instructor, organizer, choreographer, and program director. She co-founded Swing Dance SCT, one of Seattle's largest Lindy Hop & Jazz Dance schools, in 2016 and Stormy Weather Jazz Dance Festival in 2023. She is also the founder and choreographer of Evergreen Rhythm performance team.

As an instructor, she's known for her keen eye for body mechanics and ability to break down complex concepts. As a dancer, she's known for her dramatic stylings, creativity within the connection, and full body musicality. She's won many contests at events over the years, but her heart belongs to performance, social dance, and community building.

Stefan Huynh has been a partner in dancing for nearly two decades and swing dancing since 2010. He's been a member of numerous performance groups such as The Big Apple Lindy Hoppers, Yeah Man, The Amazebals, and more. As a competitor, Stefan has won and placed at major events across the country such as Camp Jitterbug, Lindyfest, Inspiration Weekend, and others. He is an avid social dancer who values conversational dancing and prioritizes connecting with the music and his partner above all else.

Stefan makes use of his master's degree in psychology from NYU as an instructor of Lindy Hop, Balboa, and other jazz-age partner dances. He is a cofounder of Swing Dance SCT, one of the largest swing dance schools in Seattle and acts as a teacher, coach, and mentor there. He is known for his innovative pedagogy and passion for partner technique.

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Joshua Mclean & Grace Anne Durant

Joshua Mclean is a Lindy Hopper, educator, and tradition bearer, specializing in Lindy Hop, Charleston, and other swing-era dances. He launched his professional career in 2015, appearing at events in nine countries and five continents to teach and perform. He has participated in notable events such as Paris Jazz Roots, Lindy Focus, Jacob’s Pillow, and the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain. Joshua is the founder of HellaBlackLindyHop (HBLH) and co-directs the company alongside Latasha Barnes. HBLH is a collective of Black dancers worldwide who gather to support each other, learn from one another, build community, and uplift each other through performance, education, and fellowship. Joshua enjoys providing fun and challenging classes, connecting dancers with the movement and art traditions that jazz music and dance have contributed to the world.

Grace was introduced to swing dancing in 2009 and instantly fell in love. Since then, she has been dancing, competing, and teaching. As a competitor, she has won and placed in regional, national, and international contests in Lindy Hop, Shag, and Balboa. Grace enjoys seeing people grow as they learn this dance. As an instructor, she loves empowering her students, focusing on connection and teaching techniques that help dancers be versatile and creative, enabling them to dance with anyone and feel the freedom to express themselves.

Joshua and Grace will bring their rich experience and passion for dance to the Lindy Maya Fest, offering a variety of workshops and performances.

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Luciano Brigante & Alejandra Orozco

Luciano Brigante and Alejandra Orozco are dancers and tango teachers with more than 20 years of international experience. They are proud representatives of the Traditional Tango.

They exemplify the Villa Urquiza tango style with their elegance, softness and precision in walking. His refined dance reflects great precision, tradition, strength and dynamism.

They were runners-up in the World Tango Championship in the Salon Tango style and obtained third place in the Metropolitan Championship representing Club Sunderland in Buenos Aires in 2004. They are choreographers and dancers representing Argentina at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games, and are producers and promoters of the TANGO CULTURE all over the world.

In addition, they created the Tango Brigante teaching method and have been guest conductors in tango schools in Germany, the United States and Mexico. They have appeared as principal dancers in a music video directed by award-winning director Mel Gibson, and have been invited to perform exclusively for royalty and presidents in Jordan, Egypt, Qatar, Argentina, and Mexico.

Luciano & Alejandra will give an introductory course to Argentine Tango and basic fundamentals for Lindy & Balboa dancers

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