Mel & Jo Calanglang
Mel and Jo are dance enthusiasts who dedicate their time to encourage swing dancing in the United Kingdom. Being familiar with lindy hop and blues, their current passion is mastering Balboa and Bal-swing - a journey of continuous learning.
They started salsa dancing in Singapore and after moving to the United Kingdom in 2000 began their journey in swing dancing. After dancing lindy hop, charleston and blues for several years they then fell in love with Balboa and became dedicated to learning this dance from 2008. However, they still love and continue dancing all styles to this day.
Jo has been athletic since she was a teenager and currently holds a brown belt in Xen-Do Martial Arts.
Mel, who also accomplished medals in various sports, was a break-dancer and a DJ in his younger years. From this personal experience, they apply the techniques of physical motion to help them understand and master the nature of dance movement.
Currently, you can find them social dancing and competing at various events across Europe and the United States. They also teach Balboa/Bal-swing and facilitate pilot sessions throughout the United Kingdom and Europe. Their “down-to-earth” and positive attitude helps to make the classes they teach not only informative but also very enjoyable. Mel still continues his love for music as a DJ and emcee at dance events across Europe and the United States.
Their aspirations to be balboa ambassadors stems from their drive to continuously learn and share the passion and knowledge of dance to enthusiasts alike.
Nejc Zupan & Vanessa Granjon
Nejc is one of the first new era swing dancers in Slovenia as he started dancing swing back in 2004. He is a founding member and leader of the first slovenian dance group Furious Worms from which the later renound Retronom was formed. He is mainly responsible for bringing Lindy Hop to Slovenia in the early years of this millennium. He gathered his knowledge at numerous international workshops. Experience from the area of modern movement theater, music and classical theater give him a fresh and fun way of teaching and developing swing dancing. He gives special attention to the jazz movement and musicality which are so important in swing.
At Dansa dance studio he has been teaching since 2010 various swing dances - Lindy hop, Balboa, Charleston, Blues, but he has also been teaching at international workshops abroad. He also competes internationally winning many of them (Lindy Shock, Rock that swing, ...) In 2016 he won the Solo jazz and Jack'n'Jill at LSSF festival. He got 3rd place at Battle Juice Exchange (2016) in Strictly Lindy category.
A passionate little ball of fury, Vanessa has been dancing for more than 15 years all across Europe. She has her own swingdanceschool since 2012 in Nantes (France). Her dancing could best be describe as "Dance and share who you are at the moment". She has gathered many titles around the world, including Showcases, Strictlys and a slew of Jack & Jills, which says a lot about her ability to bring the best out of any partner she comes across. Her style is dynamic, musical and creative, always pushing the boundaries of what can be done.
An enthusiastic and experienced teacher, she knows how to bring out the little details that make all the difference.
Carolin Metzner and Laura Gourley
Carolin has danced nearly her entire life, having studied varies styles including ballet which fascinated her the most, becoming her main passion over decades. The love of jazz eventually brought her to swing dance in 2014 and attending a local Balboa festival a year later she fell in love with the dance and community. Since then she has taken countless classes and traveled international festivals, developed her technique in both lead and follow roles.
As Dj Miss Tillie she brings along with her choice of finest music the joy and beauty of swing dancing.
When teaching Balboa, Carolin puts emphasise on a solid technique and lovely moves within both roles which not only let you survive on the social floor but allows you to dance at anytime and with whomever you wish, because it’s all about dancing, she says.
Coming from a family background in dance, it never really was an option for Laura but to become a dancer and follow family tradition. From an early age Laura has been involved with dance, ranging from Ballroom and Ballet, to Contemporary and Jazz.
Summer of 2015, Laura discovered Balboa and instantly fell in love. In the years since, every opportunity has been spent traveling throughout Europe, to take classes and experience the joy in social dancing. Having taught dance since she was in her teens, Laura started teaching Balboa in Cork city in 2017, to spread her joy of Balboa and social dancing to the local Cork Dance community. As to her there is no greater happiness than to spend time in the company of great people and dance.