Our love for all styles of swing from Boogie Woogie & Balboa to The Collegiate Shag & The Lindy Hop has helped define who we are and why we dance. It’s partly what drives us in our continued pursuit of excellence while keeping us grounded & good humored (never taking ourselves so seriously that we forget the whole point of social dance). And the years we’ve spent refining our movement has helped to define who we are on the dance floor and how and why we interpret the music the way we do.
Our deep knowledge of all these dances is partly why we’ve been invited to showcase routines on some of the biggest stages in the world from Lincoln Center’s ROSE HALL to the MAIN STAGE at The Umbria Jazz Festival. For our workshops, we look forward to sharing our knowledge and our joy for dance. Hopefully we will leave you with a stronger foundation of movement & vocabulary, improved techniques for partnering and an appreciation for the social dances that were born here in American in it’s heyday.
Paolo Pasta Lanna
Choreographer | Dancer | Producer | Designer
Paolo is a 20 year veteran of Swing Dance specializing in the Lindy Hop, Balboa, Collegiate Shag, Charleston and The Madison. He is also versed in the popular club style partner dances from Mambo to the Hustle. Paolo and his original partner Janice Wilson were the first Lindy Hoppers to TOUR with with Wynton Marsalis & The Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra and in 1998 they won the American Swing Dance Championships. They performed with shows “Swing Dance America” and “Forever Swing” The Musical Revue featuring Michael Buble. Paolo co-founded and launched the first Summer Jamboree Dance Camp in Italy, The Shake, Rhythm & Roll Festival in Asbury Park, and he’s the creative director of the Swing Remix dance spectacular in NYC. He coordinates dance teams Lindy Hop All-Stars, The Rhythm Stompers, and continues to hone his skills of the American born social dances, teaching and performing throughout the world. Paolo & partner Laurentina recently performed LIVE with Ray Gelato on the main stage at the Umbria Jazz festival in Perugia. Paolo is currently a staff instructor at You Should Be Dancing NYC & Westchester Ballroom NY, and a guest artist/teacher at Lincoln Center’s Midsummer Night Swing (since 1999).
Performances and Tours
The Swing Era: Revolution in Rhythm, Jazz At Lincoln Center’s Rose Theater 2016
Umbria Jazz Festival, Perugia Italy, 2016 – 2014
Salute to Seniors, The Westchester County Center, White Plains NY 2016
City Rhythm Orchestra Italy Tour summers 2013 – 2015
Hep Cat Holiday, England. summer 2011 – 2012
A Century of Swing, a history of dance 2006 – 2008,
The History Channel tribute on the USS Intrepid, 2005
The Italian Tour, Winter 2004
Swing Dance America Tour, Winter 2002, Fall 2003
Forever Swing The Big Band Musical Revue featuring MICHAEL BUBLE 2001
For Dancers Only Tour with WYNTON MARSALIS and the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra 2000,
Dudley Moore Tribute Carnegie Hall with Ryan & Jenny, NY 2001, JAZZ Premiere Ken Burns documentary, Harlem, Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree Lighting Special 1999 CBS, Swingin’ the Duke Centennial Special with Wynton Marsalis , PBS
Great Stuff CNBC , Today Show NBC , City Arts PBS , The Swing Thing, VH1, Good Morning America ABC, The David Letterman Show CBS, Investigation Discovery Channel, Natalie Merchant Music Video “Break your Heart”, DisneyWorld Event featuring Bill Cosby, Gracie Mansion The Mayor’s Party 1999 , The Waldorf Astoria, The Manhattan Center, The Supper Club, Swing 46, Irving Plaza, Roseland Ballroom NYC, The Nasdac at Times Square, Mid SummerNight Swing at Lincoln Center
Education Programs & Festivals
Hep Cat Holiday, England
The London Swing Dance Society, England
Swing ‘O’ Roma, Swing & Soda, Italy
Midsummer Night Swing, Lincoln Center NYC
Lincoln Center Young Adults Program, NY
Count Basie Theater, NJ
Summer Jamboree Dance Camp, Senigallia Italy
Rock That Swing, Munich, Germany
Slovenia Swing Dance Society, Ljubljana, Slovenia
School of Visual Arts, St. Johns University, New York University, New York USA
Columbia University Swing Club, NY
Columbia Presbyterian Hospital, NY
Swing Ring Montreal, CANADA
Houston Swing Dance Society Houston, USA
Monsters of Swing Santa Barbara, CA
Lindy Groove Pasadena, CA
Philadelphia Swing Dance Society PA
Long Island Swing Dance Society, NY
Melbourne Dance Exchange, Australia
2003 1st Place “Open Routine” New York Lindy Hop Open
1999 2nd Place North Atlantic Dance Championships
1998 1st Place Showcase Lindy Hop Champion American Swing Dance Championships
1997 1st Place Jack and Jill Champion Virgina Open
1997 Lindy Hop Open Champion Virginia Open
DJ “SHUFFLE PUCK” Paolo has been building his collection of Swing, Rhythm and Blues, Disco (Hustle), 50’s Rock ‘n Roll, Salsa and Ballroom for over 25 years. A solid music provider for the New York Lindy crowd since 1999, he began his music consulting at Swing 46 from the grand opening on, providing them with solid standards and unique collection that spans 60 years. Paolo has been in DJ rotation at the New York Swing Dance Society (Irving Plaza) since the late 1990’s and had been featured at: Rock That Swing Munich, SwingRemix 2007 – present, Frim Fram 1999 – 2010, Connolly’s (NYC), MidSummer Night Swing at Lincoln Center (1999-present), The Brooklyn Museum, Dog House (San Francisco), Lindy Groove (Pasadena,CA), Jacks Joint Fridays at Jack Rose NYC (2000-2004), Webster Hall NYC, Cache in Times Square NYC (2001-2003), Nells NYC (2002-2003), Swing Camp Catalina CA, Swingin’ New England MA, Supper Club NYC (1999-2003), Hudson River Park’s MoonDance, The Manhattan Center, NYC (2002) DogHouseHop NYC (2002), 92nd Street Y NYC (2003), The American Lindy Hop Championships, Swing 46 NYC (2001- present)
I first got a glimpse of The Lindy Hop back in 1994 / 1995 while attending a nightclub show at BIMBOS 365 Club in San Francisco featuring Sam Butera’s Wildest Big Band (the original members of the Louis Prima Orchestra), I noticed three couples on the dance floor with a very unique swing style. Just my luck, they invited me to the Steven Mitchell workshop (coincidentally that following weekend in CA.) and I was hooked on the Lindy Hop from that day forward.
This site is all about the dance styles that grew out of the 1920s – 1950s featuring videos, photos, info about my workshops/classes, performances, schedule, tours and other nick nacks.
credit to the dancers I learned from directly such as Frankie Manning, Ryan and Jenny, Marcus and Barble, Steven Mitchell, Eric and Sylvia, Sylvia Sykes, The Rhythm Hot Shots, The Jiving Lindy Hoppers. Their inspiring styles and dedication to educating future Lindy Hoppers helped to shape me and what I do today.
And of course credits to all the ground breakin originators who came before them from dance groups like Whitey’s Lindy Hoppers & The Harlem Congaroo Dancers that featured dance greats like Frankie Manning, Al Minns, Norma Miller to those based on the West Coast like Dean Collins & Jewel McGowel who appeared in countless films in the 1940’s and 50’s providing us with remarkable historic dance footage. Without these dancers, we would not have had such an amazing collection of dance styles to bring back to life.