Frankie Manning: Ambassador of Lindy Hop
Temple University Press, 2007 - Biography & Autobiography - 286 pages
In the early days of swing dancing, Frankie Manning stood out for his moves and his innovative routines; he created the "air step" in the Lindy hop, a dance that took the U.S. and then the world by storm. In this fascinating autobiography, choreographer and Tony Award winner (Black and Blue) Frankie Manning recalls how his first years of dancing as a teenager at Harlem's Savoy Ballroom led to his becoming chief choreographer and a lead dancer for "Whitey's Lindy Hoppers," a group that appeared on Broadway, in Hollywood musicals, and on stages around the globe. Manning brings the Swing Era vividly back to life with his recollections of crowded ballrooms and of Lindy hoppers trying to outdo each other in spectacular performances. His memories of the many headliners and film stars, as well as uncelebrated dancers with whom he shared the stage, create a unique portrait of an era in which African American performers enjoyed the spotlight, if not a star's prerogatives and salary. With collaborator Cynthia Millman, Manning traces the evolution of swing dancing from its early days in Harlem through the post-World War II period, until it was eclipsed by rock 'n' roll and then disco. When swing made a comeback, Manning's 30-year hiatus ended. He has been performing, choreographing, and teaching ever since.
What people are saying - Write a review
Master of Swing!User Review - nyreviews - Overstock.com
If you have not had the chance to meet Frankie in person this is a great way to get to know the man who many swing dancers as myself has grown to love and admire. In person you would not see a 93 year ... Read full review
Frankie Manning: ambassador of Lindy hopUser Review - Not Available - Book Verdict
"I never thought I was anything special. I just had a lot of ideas that I liked trying out." So says Manning, now 92, in this recounting of his experiences dancing at the Savoy Ballroom in Harlem, NY ... Read full review