All Traffic Jam! classes, events, and workshops cancelled through April.

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Class FAQs

  • Where are classes located?

    Our classes are held at Dance Center Chicago, 3868 N. Lincoln Ave, Chicago, IL

  • I can no longer attend a class I'm registered for, what are my options?

    We offer full refunds for cancellations up to 48 hours before the first day of your class. Check our class policies page for more information.

  • I missed the 1st class, can I still come to the rest?

    The general answer is no, especially for the 101 level classes. Our classes are progressive which means they build on the material from week to week. Students who miss the 1st week usually have a harder time and less fun which is the opposite of what we want. We strive for less hard, more fun.

  • What is Swing Dancing?

    Swing dancing is a group of dances that were danced to jazz music of the 1920s-1940s. Popular dances that survived the era include Lindy Hop, Charleston, Balboa, and Collegiate Shag. These are primarily partnered dances, but there are some dances that are danced solo.

  • What is Lindy Hop?

    Lindy Hop, the most famous swing dance, is an African-American jazz dance born in Harlem, New York City in 1928. It is primarily a partnered social dance, but includes elements of solo dancing, performances and competition.

    Lindy Hop evolved from existing swing dances including Charleston, Breakaway, tap and jazz and innovated captivating air steps. Lindy Hop soon began being featured in shows at the famous Cotton Club, world wide tours, and films like A Day at the Races and Hellzapoppin’.

    Lindy Hop’s popularity waned from 1950s-1970s as did jazz music, but the dance experienced renewed interest in the 1980s as new dancers coaxed Al Minns and Frankie Manning into teaching Lindy Hop again. The neo-swing music of the 1990s launched Lindy Hop back into the mainstream along with being featured in the movies Swing Kids and Swingers and Gap’s Khakis Swing commercials. Lindy Hop continues to be danced in cities around the world.

  • What is East Coast Swing or Jitterbug?

    East Coast Swing or Jitterbug are swing dances based on Lindy Hop. They exclusively use the 6 count basic rhythm of Lindy Hop. They are often taught as an introduction before learning Lindy Hop, but can be danced on their own.

  • What is Charleston?

    Charleston is an African-American jazz dance created in Charleston, South Carolina in the 1920s that predates Lindy Hop. Its inclusion in the 1923 Broadway show Runnin’ Wild helped popularize the dance. Charleston steps were incorporated into Lindy Hop where dancers continued to innovate and create new steps. Charleston today continues to be a part of Lindy Hop and is danced both partnered and solo.

  • Do I need to bring a partner?

    Nope! We rotate partners throughout class so you can try things with everyone, which will help you learn how to dance faster. Bonus: you’ll get to meet some nice people!

  • What clothes/shoes should I wear?

    We recommend wearing comfortable clothing you can move in. Classes are active so you might even sweat a little. We recommend flat, comfortable, closed-toe shoes you can turn in. Nothing too slippery and nothing too sticky.

All classes and dances cancelled through April

In light of the current situation, we've effectively cancelled all Traffic Jam! classes and events through April. We are hoping to continue our regular programming in May, but we will follow the recommendations of the doctors and scientists who are researching Covid-19 and will keep you updated here, on our website, and via our newsletter.

If you have questions or concerns, please contact us.

If you would like to make a donation to help us support the artists and instructors who have lost work during these shutdowns, we welcome donations!

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Thank you again for all of your support and encouragement, it is not going unnoticed. We are so proud to be part of this community and we hope to see you out dancing again soon!

—The Traffic Jam! Team