Our Mission

At Motor City Swing, our mission is:

  1. To promote dances from the swing era in metro Detroit, and serve as an educational resource for those dances.
  2. To foster an ambidancetrous community in which everyone learns the basics of both leading and following before choosing a role.
  3. To provide an inclusive, LGBT-friendly dance environment in which everyone feels comfortable dancing with anyone.

Swing Era Dances

We focus on the social dances of the swing era in the 1920s to ’40s. Our classes are in Lindy Hop, Charleston, and Balboa; you may also see Blues or any of the various forms of Shag at our dances.


Yes, you read that correctly! Ambidancetrous means that we encourage everyone to learn and dance both roles (lead and follow), and most of our lessons are taught this way. Why ambidancetrous?

  • Learning both parts broadens your understanding of swing, and puts your dancing in context. (After all, if you only know one role, you only know half the dance!)
  • By learning the basics of both parts, you can eventually make a real choice between them, rather than just guessing about which you’ll prefer.
  • Fosters an inclusive, LGBT-friendly environment.
  • Helps desexualize dance by reinforcing the idea that anyone can dance with anyone.
  • Doubles the number of people you can dance with… and you’ll never again have to worry about not having enough leads or follows!

After trying both roles for a while, you may find that you prefer one or the other. That’s great! Most of us do have at least a slight preference for one role – it just might not be the one we expected at first!


We believe that partner dancing is for everybody, and understand that not everyone feels comfortable in an environment in which men dance only with women, and women with men. At Motor City Swing, anyone can dance with anyone, regardless of gender!

Of course, we are not an exclusively LGBT group. Anyone is welcome at our dances!