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  1. #31

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    Re: Saturday night Big Band and Swing Dance at Carnation plaza! AWESOME!

    I echo what everyone else has pretty much posted already. Watching the band and dancers at Carnation Plaza is totally fun and one of the great things about Disneyland. As I Heart Disneyland wrote above: "Highly Recommended to all!"

    Someone asked about photos. I only have a few from earlier this summer. The band is Doc Anello and the Swing Machine.








  2. #32

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    Re: Saturday night Big Band and Swing Dance at Carnation plaza! AWESOME!

    Quote Originally Posted by madoka View Post
    When on Saturday night do these performances happen? Is the audience encouraged to join the dancing?
    They are printed on the entertainment schedule as the "Jump Jive and Boogie" with the band name, and it is also available on the Disneyland.com entertainment calendar, so you can check before you go.

    For the last several years, the shows at are 7, 8, 9, and 10:15 pm and the sets last for about 35 minutes with the exception of the the 9 pm showing, which is shorter because of the fireworks. In between the band playing, a CD loop of popular standards plays which are chosen for their danceability.

    There are chairs and tables outside of the dance floor proper, and it's very informal. You come and go whenever you want, and the dance floor is open to whoever wants to get up and dance. Regular dancers tend to cluster together and it's fairly obvious where they are, and I'd say about half of them are open to dancing with total strangers - it's pretty easy to pick them out, because they are the ones who regularly are dancing with different people.

    They only restrict the dance area on rainy days because the dance floor, if wet, can get quite slippery.

  3. #33

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    Re: Saturday night Big Band and Swing Dance at Carnation plaza! AWESOME!

    Quote Originally Posted by Disneyland Daddy View Post
    Sounds like so much fun! They seem to limit it to one or two nights during the cooler months - but during the Summertime, I think Big Bands might be there every single night! It's so much fun.

    We actually decided to brush up on our 'dance skills' in 2003 and took a class for two months so we could not be spectators- but actually part of the fun!
    Sadly, it is only on Saturday nights, and Fridays and Saturdays during the summer. I know, that's the reason I bought the Premium AP was so I could go dancing on all those nights that are normally blocked-out. Many of the people you see dancing come there mainly to dance. They either have Disney Silver Pass priveleges, or they bought the Premium AP so they could go during all those Saturday nights in the summer.

    Many of the dancers you see sitting to the right of the stage area pretty much come to the park around 6 pm, grab dinner someplace and then settle in to dance all 4 sets, maybe ride one ride then head home. They are also super easy to pick out when they play the "Shim Sham" song which starts out "You wanna learn Shim Sham..." - it's on that CD loop of music they play in between sets. The Shim Sham is a line dance that most swing dancers eventually learn, and it's kind of a not-so-secret handshake. Pretty much *all* the people you see run out onto the floor when that happens - they are the hard core swing dancers.

    Since many dances that have live bands typically cost about $12-$15 for admission, a Disneyland pass is actually a pretty decent way to enjoy really good big band swing dancing if you like to dance a lot. I personally dance about once a week now that I'm married, but before then I'd go out about 2-3 times a week so getting a premium AP *just* for dancing was worth it. Bonus is that I'm also a big theme park fan in general!

  4. #34

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    Re: Saturday night Big Band and Swing Dance at Carnation plaza! AWESOME!

    Quote Originally Posted by CAspace View Post
    But for those of us who are not YET dancers there are plenty of chairs and places to sit and stand while listening and watching the show! It is a great time!
    You know what's funny - whenever I ask any of the people I meet dancing what motivated them to learn, most of them mentioned Disneyland and Carnation Plaza. Most of them remember seeing other people dancing when they visited as young children and the image stuck in their minds. Dancing at Carnation Plaza is the "ideal" dancing image most of us hold in our heads. But then as adults we all learned through various community college classes and friends, then dance at far less elegant surroundings and forget that Disneyland exists. I'd say most dancers aren't even aware that Disneyland *has* swing dancing anymore, mostly because they don't happen to pass by Carnation Plaza during the 4 hours once a week when it happens.

    I think many of us believe we'll be dancing until we're as old as Rose and Dubby, the couple that was, until this year, dancing every Saturday night for decades. Sadly, Vincent "Dubby" Dublino died earlier this year in May and Rose died soon a few weeks after. We all also know (or have heard of) Frankie Manning, who I believe is 94 this year and still dances! It's a kind of fountain of youth for the brain and body - unlike other sports, where at a certain age we have to give it up, dancing appears to be something you can do until your last days.

    thedisneyblog wrote up a nice post this year about them:

    Rose and Dubby, Disneyland Swing Dance couple, join Walt | The Disney Blog

  5. #35

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    Thumbs up Re: Saturday night Big Band and Swing Dance at Carnation plaza! AWESOME!

    Quote Originally Posted by Pretzel View Post
    You know what's funny - whenever I ask any of the people I meet dancing what motivated them to learn, most of them mentioned Disneyland and Carnation Plaza. Most of them remember seeing other people dancing when they visited as young children and the image stuck in their minds. Dancing at Carnation Plaza is the "ideal" dancing image most of us hold in our heads. But then as adults we all learned through various community college classes and friends, then dance at far less elegant surroundings and forget that Disneyland exists. I'd say most dancers aren't even aware that Disneyland *has* swing dancing anymore, mostly because they don't happen to pass by Carnation Plaza during the 4 hours once a week when it happens.

    I think many of us believe we'll be dancing until we're as old as Rose and Dubby, the couple that was, until this year, dancing every Saturday night for decades. Sadly, Vincent "Dubby" Dublino died earlier this year in May and Rose died soon a few weeks after. We all also know (or have heard of) Frankie Manning, who I believe is 94 this year and still dances! It's a kind of fountain of youth for the brain and body - unlike other sports, where at a certain age we have to give it up, dancing appears to be something you can do until your last days.

    thedisneyblog wrote up a nice post this year about them:

    Rose and Dubby, Disneyland Swing Dance couple, join Walt | The Disney Blog
    Wow, what a story! I hope to find love like Mr and Mrs. Dublino had. Dancing together until we are in our 90's+ What magic. True love. Married for over 60 years! We have so much to learn from our elders. What a different time, truly the greatest generation. Thanks for the inspiring story and I hope that we can all continue to share the passion and the joy that Mr. And Mrs. Dublino must have shared with all they encountered for many ,many years to come.

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