Dance workshop begins Saturday

  • Courtesy photo
    Brian “Lucky” Skillen will teach classes in Swing and Blues dancing during the Hilo Hep Cats' “Lucky Dance” workshop.

The Hilo Hep Cats will be hosting a “Lucky Dance” workshop that begins this weekend, featuring a variety of classes.

Visiting dance instructor Brian “Lucky” Skillen spends most of the year teaching in Europe and Asia.


He is a periodic visitor to the Big Island, where he has contributed to the skills of swing and blues dancers since 2012 as a guest of the Hilo Hep Cats.

He is noted for his ability to teach with humor and sensitivity.

The “Lucky Dance” workshop is scheduled for Saturday (Dec. 1) through Tuesday (Dec. 4) at various venues in Hilo. The syllabus includes instruction in Lindy hop, blues, collegiate shag and musicality.

There are classes for all levels, including a lesson in Texas Tommy variations.

A training session for dance teachers is slated for Sunday (Dec. 2).

The swing-themed dance classes on Saturday will be at the Hilo Elks Lodge, located at 150 Kinoole Street. There will be three classes between 12:30 and 4 p.m., plus a class at 7 p.m.

The evening Swinging Saturday party following the lesson will also feature live music by the popular local dance band, Jazz Mele, from 8-10 p.m.

Sunday classes will focus on blues dancing, including two “Tangoed Up In Blues” sessions which emphasize tango-inspired movements. These classes will run from noon-4 p.m. at the Hilo Elks Lodge.

The evening teacher training is at a private residence.

From Monday-Tuesday there will be classes in collegiate shag, an energetic classic swing style, and musicality, or how to interpret the music to create a unique dance experience. Both classes begin at 7 p.m. at Paradise Performing Arts Center, 29 Shipman Street.


For more information, contact Andrea Gill at 808-959-8216 or

The full registration flyer is available at

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