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About Us!

HepCat Productions, founded by Chris Chapman, is Seattle's premier organization for classes in Swing Dancing, Lindy Hop, and Authentic Jazz Dance. It hosts the city's longest running all-ages Swing Dance, popular classes for all levels, and home to the American Lindy Hop Championship performance team - Zah-Zu-Zay. HepCat Productions has a goal of sharing the incredible joy of Lindy Hop and Swing Dancing while delivering high quality instruction to its students.

Chris Chapman

For about two decades Chris Chapman has passionately studied the many techniques and styles of Lindy Hop (swing dancing) along with many dance forms from the larger family of Authentic Jazz Dances, and he feels fortunate to have trained with many legends of the dance. Having toured extensively across North America as an instructor, Chris brings to dancers his study of biomechanics and various philosophies of movement acquisition along with his deep appreciation of the dance's history. He's an American Lindy Hop Champion, a Pacific Northwest Lindy Hop Champion, and an Ultimate Lindy Hop Showdown Champion. Chris has choreographed and performed for numerous plays, musicals, and shows. Founder of the University of Washington Swing Kids and then HepCat Productions (SeattleSwing), he offers many levels of lindy hop classes and Seattle's longest running all-ages weekly Swing dance. Chris formed, trained, and choreographed the American Lindy Hop Championship performance team Zah-Zu-Zay. With his passion for the dance and teaching Chris shares his insightful expertise to be the supportive help you need to figure out the dance and to give you those challenging opportunities when you crave them. Lindy Hop is fun, learning it should be fun! Above all, Chris believes in keeping active on the social dance floor, where he finds the most joy!

Kelli Wilkerson

Kelli has been dancing Lindy Hop, Balboa, Shag and many other Swing Dance genres since early 1997. In those 14 years, she has worked her way up the national ranks as a competitor; placing in pro divisions in esteemed competitions such as Ultimate Lindy Hop Showdown, Camp Hollywood/National Jitterbug Competition, Camp Jitterbug, International Lindy Hop Championships, Lindy on the Rocks, Midwest Lindy Fest, American Lindy Hop Championships and others... As well has proven herself to be a successful teacher and judge. Kelli has taught all over the country at workshop weekends and competition weekends. Some of the cities she has been most well known as a teacher are San Francisco, Sacramento and Los Angeles CA, Minneapolis, MN, Chicago IL, Seattle, WA, Boston MA, Milwaukee, WI Denver CO and Dallas TX. Kelli is driven by having fun while teaching lots of useful technique in her classes. She enjoys nothing more than laughing and smiling while watching her students grow, progress and improve whether through a series or just an hour! She has a knack for showmanship that encourages great basics and fundamentals so you can have a great time dancing with anyone at any speed and in any style of swing.

Jenna Applegarth

Jenna is very active in the current lindy hop scene as she attends coordinates, and teaches various workshops and exchanges all across the globe. Originally from Wenatchee she's spent years studying with Lindy Hoppers in Seattle, Southern California, and around the world pouring over the many different ways that great dancers make it work. Being this versatile can seem complicated but Jenna shares how to make it fun to find new ways to connect with other dancers. As a passionate teacher she'll help you conquer your dance challenges, give you helpful new material, and above all else make learning the dance fun!

Brittany Johnson

Brittany Johnson discovered Lindy Hop in Seattle in 2004. She quickly became a dance addict, devoting her free time to furthering her knowledge through hours of classes with world-renowned instructors, along with developing a unique style on the social dance floor. Watch out for her "monster swivel!" Whether competing, performing, or social dancing, Brittany's playfulness and athleticism shine. Her motivation comes from those individually incomparable moments shared on the social dance floor, as the spirit of Lindy Hop flows between partners and it all "clicks."

Jodi Fleischman

Jodi partnered with the legendary Frankie Manning, teaching and performing with him for over a decade! Frankie frequently requested Jodi as a partner as he said that she was one of top follows in the world. Jodi first got her start with dancing with African dance at the age of 5, and she started lindy hop in 1995. With her infectious joy of the dance, she won the first Pacific Northwest Lindy Hop Championship in 1999. Jodi brings this same joy of Lindy Hop (her first love) to her teaching as well as her expertise as a teacher of a wide variety of other dance styles such as Cuban Salsa, Fox Trot, Bachata, Waltz, Blues, and probably nearly any partner dance you can think of! She has been brought in as a loved instructor to teach at dance camps and workshops all over the world. Jodi is very excited to come share her notes and insights from her experience working with the biggest legend of the dance, Frankie Manning!

Melissa Petersen

Melissa Petersen has been dancing Lindy Hop for five years, mostly in the Seattle area but also spending some time in Denver. Melissa is glad to be back in the Northwest as she currently lives in Bellingham, studying speech pathology at Western Washington University. Melissa loves performing Lindy Hop, and she was a member of the championship winning team - Zah-Zu-Zay. Quickly becoming a favored teacher, Melissa has a reputation of integrating her quick wit, skill, and sound effects to give her students a multi-modal learning experience.

Anna Blair

Anna is in love with Jazz, Blues and other music that stems from early American traditions. Whenever she hears this music she can not help but move and express herself. Her greatest passion is dancing and inspiring others to learn, experience, and gather together to celebrate this art form! She is a teacher, promoter, performer and organizer. Anna's dance addiction began in 2000 and has not stopped; she has traveled around the world studying Lindy hop and other American Vintage Dances from the world's most legendary dancers. She has taught dance since 2003, and brings with her an excitement and energy that is contagious to her students. She is known for her expressive style, attention to detail within technique and kinesthetic awareness that leaves her students with a well-rounded comprehension and desire to get out on the floor and dance!

Cheryl Crow

Cheryl has often been referred to as the unofficial "Welcome Wagon" to new dancers in the Seattle area due to her insatiable love for making new dancers feel at home and comfortable on the social dance floor. She has found a happy home in co-teaching Introductory Lindy Hop courses and is known for her mid-swingout squeals of glee and frequent uttering of the phrase, "Whee!" With a background in high level soccer, Cheryl brings an energetic and dynamic athleticism to the dance and firmly believes that if a former "jock" like her can learn to dance, anyone can!

Madeline Hopkins

Madeline began dancing Lindy Hop in August of 2004 and has been having a blast ever since. Her particular love for solo dancing grows daily, and as a member of Seattle's own vintage chorus girl team Sister Kate, Madeline feels fortunate to be able to share vintage jazz dance with audiences of all varieties. On the dance floor Madeline is known for her approachability and her ability to dance with people of many different skill levels. Madeline loves social dancing and is always happy when new people ask her to dance. Madeline attempts to embody the lighthearted, playful nature of Lindy Hop, which shows in her seemingly ceaseless smile and periodic fits of laughter on the dance floor.

Alex Yan

Alex Yan is a Seattle Lindy Hopper and Jazz Era DJ whose love of the music drove him to begin collecting jazz era music and video clips. His goal in DJ'ing and dancing are to bring out the best in dancers' creativity and excitement in ways that offer tribute to the original jazz era musicians and dancers. Alex is proud to have organized Seattle's New Orleans Hurricane Katrina Fundraiser in 2005, and contributed to the Killer Diller Ball at the Century Ballroom, the Century Masters of Lindy Hop and Tap 2006. His upcoming projects are Seattle's new Lindy Hop competition: the Battle of Swing, as well as the Century Masters of Lindy Hop and Tap 2007. His favorite jazz musicians are Fats Waller, Louis Armstrong, Lil Hardin Armstrong, and Duke Ellington. Alex encourages everyone to ask him to dance, except when he's busy debugging the sound system.

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