The swing dance at the Poughkeepsie Tennis Club on Friday, March 23, which is hosted by Hudson Valley Community Dances, will be particularly lively and flamboyant, thanks to the performance by Eight to the Bar. The Connecticut-based band’s name refers to the eight driving bass beats per measure that define boogie-woogie, which had dancers frenetically rocking, whirling and whooshing back in the 1940s.
Just back from the Republic of Georgia (where it was invited by the American Embassy), the band has won kudos for its outstanding instrumentalists, sophisticated arrangements and dynamic female vocalist. It has opened for Manhattan Transfer, Robert Cray, Neil Young, Roy Orbison, Ray Charles and Big Bad Voodoo Daddy. Its sounds bring back a postwar era in which America was at the height of its economic power, and the sounds gleaned from the radio on a cross-country trip in a capacious Chevrolet ranged from jive to tunes by crooners alternatively wistful and confidently cool to Motown. The best part, of course, is that at the Poughkeepsie Tennis Club you get to dance to them.
The dance starts at 8:30 p.m. and will be preceded by a half-hour beginners’ class, scheduled at 8. The cost is $15 general admission, $10 for full-time students. People with some East Coast swing dancing experience who want to improve their moves and timing can also attend an earlier class, with the choice of an intermediate class held from 6:30 to 7:15 p.m. and a more advanced class from 7:15 to 8; there is a separate $15 cost for one or $20 for both of the classes.
At 9:30 p.m., a swing-dance duet called the Cool Kittens will perform. Eight to the Bar will play until 11:30 p.m., making for a full evening of dancing and vibrant rhythms. Single people without a partner are welcome. For more information, contact Bena Silber at (845) 454-2571 or visit http://hudsonvalleydance.org. The dance is one of the organization’s monthly dances, which are held every fourth Friday. The Poughkeepsie Tennis Club is located at 135 South Hamilton Street.