Weekend overview

Friday 9 March 2018

6:30pmDoors open and pass collectionForever Dance
7:00pmBalboa Lesson (All levels)Forever Dance
7:45pmShag Lesson (All levels)Forever Dance
8:30pmSocial dancing to DJ musicForever Dance

Saturday 10 March 2018

9:30amDoors open and pass collectionDance Factory
9:30amDoors openForever Dance
Balboa and Shag workshopsDance Factory, Forever Dance

8:00pmDoors open and pass collectionLithuanian Club
8:00pmSocial dancing to band and DJ music, compsLithuanian Club

Sunday 11 March 2018

10:00amDoors open and pass collectionDance Factory
Balboa and Shag workshopsDance Factory
Balboa and Shag Jack and Jill heatsDance Factory

8:00pmDoors open and pass collectionForever Dance
8:00pmSocial dancing to band and DJ music, compsForever Dance
12:00amSlow Balboa room openForever Dance

Monday 12 March 2018

10:30amDoors open and pass collectionDance Factory
Balboa, Shag and special workshopsDance Factory

7:00pmDoors open for picnic and dancingOur Lady's Hall
8:30pmOl'picnic Games followed by more dancingOur Lady's Hall

All the Cats Join In features four exciting social nights in environments that will bring out the best dancing in you. The venues have been hand-picked for their combination of beautiful floors, socialising space and bars, for great times on and off the floor with old and new friends.

A map of the workshops and evening venues is shown here.

Friday: Maxie's Cats

9 March 2018, 6:30pm - 12:30am
Forever Dance, 432 Church St, Richmond
Balboa with Trish & Derek at 7:00pm, Shag with Annabelle & Nial at 7:45pm (All levels)
Top DJs from the scene spinning tunes
It wouldn't be Club Maxie's without PIZZA!
BYO — with nearby bottle shops open late.
$25 including classes. Included with Gold and Social passes.

Club Maxie’s, the heart of Balboa and Shag social dancing in Melbourne, is going on a road trip. Catch up with old friends and make new ones in a fun mixer game and go into the draw to win a pair of Happy Socks for your happy feet. Kick the night off by joining our complementary Balboa and Shag taster lessons from 7:00pm. Our worldclass DJs will spin the tunes to keep your feet in motion all night, and it wouldn’t be a Maxie’s night without pizza to fuel the frivolity!!

Saturday: A-cat-emy awards

10 March 2018, 8:00pm - 1:30am
Lithuanian Club, 44 Errol St, North Melbourne
Finals of the Balboa and Shag showdown competitions.
Live band Jason & The Swingonauts plus the finest DJs around!
Glamorous, dapper, spiffy and awardsy
Available on site. No BYO please.
$45. Included with Gold and Social passes.

Enter the glamorous world of vintage Swing dancing via the Walk of Fame, as we honour the stars of the weekend: You, Balboa and Shag! Dress in your red carpet finest and be snapped by the paparazzi, in our photobooth or on the dance floor showing off your magic. The Ball will feature spectacular Showdown competitions, performances and of course some of Melbourne’s swingin’est Jazz cats. Meow!

Sunday: Hawaiian Luau

11 March 2018, 8:00pm - 1:00am
Forever Dance, 432 Church St, Richmond
Finals of the Balboa and Shag Jack & Jill competitions.
Live band Eccentric + 1 plus the finest DJs around!
Lei-zy, colourful, flowers and coconuts
BYO — with nearby bottle shops open until 9pm.
$40. Included with Gold and Social passes.

Aloha popoki! The weekend takes a tropical turn back at Forever Dance for another night of festivities. Our Jack & Jill finalists will throw down amidst Hawaiian shirts and leis (grass skirts optional, boardshorts strongly discouraged). Let hot live jazz wash over you while the sun sets over Port Phillip Bay. Slow Balboa lovers, the back room will be open for an hour of slow dancing pleasures from midnight.

Monday: Pot-luck picnic dance party

12 March 2018, 7:00pm - 12:00am
Our Lady's Hall, 49 Nicholson St, East Brunswick
National and international DJs spinning tunes
Casual, summery
Pot-luck! Click here to tell us what delicious treat you’re bringing
Special event — Ol'picnic games
Available on site. No BYO please.
$25. Included with Gold and Social passes.

Pack a rug or cut a rug — it’s picnic time! For the final event of All the Cats Join In, our Bal and Shag community comes together to share a meal and memories of a great weekend. Bring a plate to contribute to our communal banquet from 7:00pm, while our exceptional DJs play music for dining and dancing. And what would a picnic be without games? Form teams and join the shenanigans for a series of entertaining dancing games, played for fun, where the points don’t matter.

Live Music

Jason & The Swingonauts

Jason Downes is leading this highly acclaimed group of musicians as they swing hard for your dancing pleasure. Joining Jason is an all-star group of Melbourne’s finest musicians — ‘The Swingonauts’: Craig Fermanis (guitar), Howard Cairns (double bass), Steven Grant (piano), Michael McQuaid (tenor sax), Mat Jodrell (trumpet), Danny Fischer (drums) and Tamsin West (vocals). Expect high energy and swing, swing, swing!

Eccentric + 1

Eccentric is a small, hot jazz group led by Jason Downes on clarinet and alto sax. Inspired by music from Jelly Roll Morton and Johnny Dodds to Bechet and Benny Carter, Eccentric will feature Sandra Talty (drums/vocals), Peter Baylor (guitar/vocals) and Jono Brown (double bass) along with a special guest Steven Grant (piano). Eccentric is all about the dancers — so come prepared for great sets of hot, live jazz!

Disc Jockeys

Mike Mizgalski (USA)

Michael Mizgalski aka "Sailor Mike", has been deejaying his extensive collection of swing music since 2001 when he co-founded the world famous Swing Pit in Pasadena California. He's continued keeping the floors full at various swing clubs in and around the Southern California area since then. He is now one of the headlining swing deejays at the very popular Clifton's Cafeteria in downtown Los Angeles.

Kathryn Atkinson (MEL)

Kathryn started DJing for swing dancers at Club Maxie's about 7 years ago. Since then she has become a regular behind the decks at Club Maxie's (Balboa and Shag), Fun Pit (Lindy and all things swing) and Swing Patrol Blues Night (Blues). She has also DJed at Balboa On The River (Brisbane), The Balboa Experiment (USA) and at Herrang Dance Camp (Sweden). Kathryn's love of swing dancing stemmed from a love of swing music, and her sets reflect this. Her aim is to play music to inspire creativity and keep you on the dance floor.

Julia Wharington (MEL)

It’s all about the music, right? When Julia started dancing, she discovered quickly that the DJ had such a huge influence on her enjoyment of the night. This is what drew her to DJing. She wanted to see if she could create an awesome time for the dancers in the room. Julia has DJed at countless events over the last 6 years, and has a huge collection of music very much suitable for Balboa and Shag. She’ll be playing the tunes for some of the competitions at All the Cats Join In this year and is looking forward to providing the inspiration for fantastic dances, cheering you on from the sidelines.

Allahna Cosgriff (PER)

Allahna began swing dancing in 2009. Through exploring the different swing dance styles, Allahna found herself lacking in Shag dance partners. Motivated to get a Shag scene happening, Allahna opened Shagabout - Swing Dance School, and ran The Australian Shag Camp in 2014 and 2015, which brought people from all over the country together. Allahna has DJed at Shag and Balboa events around Western Australia for several years and loves to find the right piece to create a creative, playful dance atmosphere.

Tyler Holmes (MEL)

Tyler has a love affair with Shag, and is seeing Balboa on the side. His passion for vintage tunes and original recordings have driven him to amass quite the collection of shuffle happy music right out of the 1930's, to the tunes of Benny Goodman, Artie Shaw and Larry Clinton. Tyler has been DJing since as soon as people would let him near the sound system; he is a regular DJ around the Melbourne scene and a staple at SwingMania. Expect to hear a lot of happy, swinging, shufflin' tunes while Tyler is on decks.

Robert Edwards (BNE)

Robert Edwards is an experienced swing DJ from Brisbane who has played at a countless number of socials, including national and international events, over the past 8 years. His passion for the authentic dance music of the Swing Era informs his every song choice, as he carefully navigates and massages the ever-changing energy of the dance floor. With his goal of playing the perfect song for every moment, he aims ludicrously to please all of the people all of the time.

Luke Serrano (MEL)

Luke has extensive experience DJing specifically for Balboa and Shag dancers at Balpit Richmond where he is the resident lead instructor and DJ; Club Maxie’s Prahran; Balboa on the River (Brisbane) and The Balboa Experiment (USA). A high school music teacher, composer and saxophonist by profession, Luke brings his specialised musical knowledge to the fore by carefully selecting the best Balboa and Shag-friendly tracks from his extensive collection of vintage recordings. He especially delights in introducing the dance community to Swing Era ‘rarities’ that swing hard and inspire expressive dancing.