Orchestra plays live music for AU Swing Dance Association
by Becky Hardy / CAMPUS REPORTER
Nov 12, 2012 | 1930 views | 0 0 comments | 17 17 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Even though Auburn Knights Orchestra has been around since the 1930s, it still has a swing in its step.

The nonprofit organization’s mission is to promote the spirit of big band jazz music and carry on its legacy.

The orchestra combined forces with Auburn’s Swing Dance Association Friday, Nov. 2 by throwing a swing dance and live jazz music event.

“The band is comprised primarily of Auburn University students in addition to other musicians in the East Alabama area,” said Jeremy Leff, publicity manager for the event and saxophone player in orchestra.

The hour of instruction before free dance started was well-needed, with most of the attendees being first-time swing dancers.

“I’ve never been swing dancing before, so when my friends invited me to come and I thought it would be fun,” said Tom Rogers, freshman in software engineering.

Others had a little bit of experience under their belts and wanted to come back for more.

“During my freshman year, I went swing dancing with a bunch of friends at the Auburn swing dancing club,” said Lee-Anne Brantley, sophomore in social work.

Brantley said she likes the atmosphere of the events.

“I really like the music,” Brantley said. “It’s really laid back. The dancing is a lot of fun, and it’s a really comfortable environment.”

For the two instructors at the event, love bloomed on the dance floor.

“I joined the association in 2002 when I came to school, and I met Chris in the association,” said Laura Olds, instructor with Auburn swing dance association. “And we are now married.”

Chris Olds, faculty adviser for Auburn swing dance association, likes the technicality of swing dancing.

“Sort of as an engineer, the balance and the logic behind it really attracted me to it,” Chris said. “It’s set, I know what to do and I can have a plan and just do it.”

Laura said dancing has always been in her life.

“I grew up dancing, and I always loved it,” Laura said. “I just always wanted to learn how to swing dance, because I loved the history behind it. Also, the 90s GAP khaki commercial made it look like a lot of fun.”

Laura said she has met many different people through the association.

“I have friends from all over the world that I can dance with,” Laura said. “The turn out was bigger than I imagined. I think a lot of people came just for the music.”

The association holds dancing events from 7–9 p.m. at the Jan Dempsey Arts Center. The first hour is for instruction and the second is for free dance.
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