Julie’s expressive dancing and dynamic connection are known throughout the blues dancing world. With a background in theatre and solo dance, and an undying desire for continued learning, she is best known for her solo movement, choreography, aesthetics, and killer follower expression.
A hard-working competitor, Julie has won or placed in many national competitions, including Mile High Blues Idiom Solo Riffin’ 2018 (1st place), bluesSHOUT! 2018 All Star Strictly (2nd place), Snowbound Blues Expert Mix & Match 2018 (1st place), and more.
As a teacher, Julie is clear, thoughtful, and earnest. From advanced Struttin’ variations to beginner-friendly intros to lead-follow dynamics, Julie carefully crafts her classes and tailors her material to fit the crowd at hand. Julie has taught blues dancing in San Francisco, Seoul, Austin, Boston, London, Chicago, Zurich, and many places in between. She also teaches regularly in her home-base of Boston. For dance videos, pictures, and more info, check out https://dancewithjulie.wordpress.com.
Damon has been dancing his entire life, starting with vernacular Jazz/Blues first taught to him at the tender age of six by his grandmother. After nearly a decade of learning at the heels of his elders, he went on and eventually studied a numerous dance forms until coming full circle in 1995 to focus primarily on the history and styles of Swing and Blues as his family danced them with a special focus on the Southern styles from the Mississippi Delta region. He has studied the development of vernacular Jazz/Blues dance across the United States learning from a number of the original dancers. He is largely regarded as one of the foremost authorities on Blues idiom dance and has been interviewed as a dance historian in documentary and for radio. Damon has been a featured instructor at camps, festivals, and workshops across five continents.
Mike Legenthal has been a full-time student and teacher of blues for over a decade. In her dancing, she seeks to be distinctive and creative, but always driving towards the heart of blues aesthetic and culture. She immerses herself in the music and in playful, dynamic partnership. As an instructor, she offers both detailed technical descriptions and imaginative metaphors, to reach a wide range of minds. She is clever and respectful, and hopes to leave her students engaged in critical, nuanced critical thought. Mike’s current projects include being a member and choreographer in the B-Sides, helping to run The Blues Experiment and Blues Muse, and researching blues-idiom movement through video, in the hopes of expanding the community’s knowledge base.
Grey found blues dancing long ago when dancing with his grandfather as a child. At university he found others doing a dance similar to what he knew, and clung to the familiar music. Grey is internationally known for innovative classes, deep cultural context, an intuitive learning style and leaving students with a lingering feeling they have been changed beyond just dance. He loves to challenge students physically but also intellectually and emotionally, with his experience based teaching.
Personally he is striving towards elevating his technical skills and playfulness while dancing and brings that into his classes hoping to lead by example and show that we can always be learning. Grey , organizes one of the largest dances in the USA and writes obsidiantea.com, a site with helpful resources. Combine all this with his skill as a dancer, being known for musicality and performance, Grey, has cultivated unique respect as an All star division competitor in the USA.
He also loves cats, tea, dancing with new people. Ask him to dance!
Joshua Purnell started dancing years ago with Swing and Blues, and he's been on this dance journey ever since. Dance to him is about an individual connection with each partner, distinct and musical, in a way that honors and pays tribute to where the dance comes from and where it's participants and celebrants do. Joshua teaches the fundamentals of connection and blues in Siren City as one of it's organizers, focusing on connections and grounding- to him, there is no such thing as a perfected basic, just the perfect basic for the occasion. Joshua has put in long and arduous hours ensuring that Siren City is safe for the people who dance there, and is always willing to listen to his dancers when they come to him with an issue or a suggestion. The sense of community and energy of kind warmth that he has about him has traveled to their sister scenes as a dance ambassador, and Joshua has taken those lessons with him back to his home scene to instruct in new and innovative ways. Joshua hasn't yet met the dancer or person he can't learn a life lesson from, and he likes it that way- growth to him is a key part of being a dance instructor, both personal and for his students. If you have questions or comments, he welcomes them in a friendly open dialogue about how everyone can approach this dance.
Bobby Green is a master teacher of black ballroom dances including: Club Ballroom, GrAystone Social, Bop and Salsa. Bobby has performed on American Bandstand, Soul Train at Carnegie Hall and the Apollo Theater. Bobby was also winner of the Burn the Floor (national tour) dance contest. Sandra Mason joins him teaching contemporary Slow Drag for the weekend.