Frankie Manning, who passed away in 2009 at the age of 94, will long be remembered and celebrated for his vital role in the history, revival, and preservation of Swing Dancing. As one of the leading dancers at Harlem’s legendary Savoy Ballroom, he revolutionized the course of the Lindy Hop with his innovations (the first air step, and the first ensemble choreography). He was called "the Ambassador of Swing" because of his kind spirit and infectious laugh that inspired the world to dance. Frankie’s birthday was May 26, and in his honor, we celebrate World Lindy Hop Day.
In 1982, when Erin Stevens was right out of college, she went on a journey to New York City in search of the roots of Swing dancing. Erin first worked with Al Minns, and several years later, after several trips back and forth, she found Frankie Manning, which led to a life-long dedication to preserving Savoy-style Lindy Hop and the memory of Frankie Manning. She & her sister, Tami, co-founded PBDA in 1986.