May 27

Frankie Manning Tribute Night with the Shim-Sham

Category: dances

May 26, 1914 was the date Frankie Manning came into this world. If he was still alive today we would be celebrating his 97th Birthday this Friday night and most of us would likely be in New York at a special celebration. Sadly he passed away just shy of his 95th birthday.

But a great many of us will never forget him and his impact on our dancing lives. Who was Frankie Manning?

He was one of the original Lindy Hoppers who helped shape the dance back at the Savoy Ballroom in Harlem in the 1930s. He was a member of the electrifying dance troupe, Whitey’s Lindy Hoppers, who can be seen here in this clip from Hellzapoppin.


He was a dancer, choreographer, teacher and an inspiration, sharing his stories, his effervescent personality and joyous dance moves with a new generation of dancers at camps like Beantown and Herrang. He was a real first class act.

Tonight, we pay tribute to his memory by doing his favorite line dance, the Shim Sham. Here he is leading the dance in Houston from several years ago…


We’ve enlisted Tony & Aurelie Tye of Hop to the Beat studios and Beantown Dance Camp to teach the Shim Sham in our regularly scheduled lesson slot. If you’ve seen the Shim Sham performed and always wanted to learn it, now is your chance! Later on in the evening we’ll do a communal performance tribute to Frankie, and for those who knew him, we can give him some of our thoughts.

Lesson (included in the price of admission): 8:00pm – 9:00pm
Dancing: 9:00pm – 12:30am
General Admission: $10
Students and Seniors (with Valid ID): $8

The Crosby Whistle Stop
24 Roland Street
Charlestown, MA 02129

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