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  • Writer's pictureOlivia Fortunato

Dancing with Frankie: Sing Lim

Updated: Mar 25

In this new series, we ask dancers who knew Frankie to share what they learned from him and what of those teachings they have taken to their students and scene. Sing shares her memories and her favorite videos and photos of her with Frankie.

Swing Master Jam '94

I met Frankie in 1989 when I was a baby lindy hopper in London. My teachers Ryan Francois and Julie Oram had invited Frankie to work with their group Zoots and Spangles.

My friendship with Frankie continued in parallel to my interest in organising lindy events. I was running Jitterbugs dance club with Ryan and Julie and soon Frankie was invited back to London to headline at our Swing Masters Jam.

I returned back to my home in Singapore in 1995 and in 1998 Frankie came to Singapore together with Erin Stevens. He became a regular visitor - coming to SEA Jam at least 7 times! And along the way, I had the opportunity to teach and learn with Frankie across the globe - from Australia to Japan to USA.

Though Frankie is no longer physically with us, his spirit permeates the lindy hop classes and parties in Singapore. Thanks to material like his biography (co written with Cynthia Millman), various videos from dance camps around the world, and of course historical videos, we are able to keep referring back to his thoughts, ideas and philosophies on dance and life. Being kind, accepting and forgiving go hand in hand with Frankie’s stunning talent, creativity and abilities in dance.

Working mostly in Asia now, I am so happy to see the great interest and enthusiasm to learn this art form. The dancers here are passionate about the dance, the music and yes, learning more of its history and culture. Language barriers, cultural differences and too much information on YouTube can make it confusing, and I try to help by telling stories and presentations. (I am even in a Korean book club trying to read Frankie’s book!). I try to share The Frankie Manning Foundation work and information and of course every year is a big World Lindy Hop Day celebration to remember Frankie and his friends. :)

We were so lucky to have so many years of learning together with Frankie - I am indebted to his generous sharing when he was with us, and i will do my best to keep his memory alive.

-Sing Lim

Sing's Favorite Videos

Photo Gallery Descriptions:

Top Left: This was at SEA Jam in Singapore, 2006 with my husband Chan Meng and 2 of my kids, Koi Jun and Kai Yang

Top Middle: Dancing with Frankie at his 80th Birthday party at Cant Top the Lindy Hop

Top Right: This was in London, at the second Swing Masters Jam

Bottom Left: Teaching with Frankie at Swing Masters Jam

Bottom Middle: Dinner with Frankie, Judy, my husband and Koi Jun in Singapore 2002

Bottom Right: At Jitterbugs in London, maybe 1991 or 2

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