Q&A with Felix Berghäll
It is just under 2 weeks until Boogie Down South kicks off for 2018. Who’s excited? We are!
We are delighted to introduce you to Felix Berghäll!
We sat down with Felix and here is what he had to say about Lindy Hop, his inspiration and his upcoming and first adventure to Australia.
– What was your first experience with Lindy Hop?
Growing up in the competition scene in Sweden we learn five dances that are included in the competitions. Bugg, Boogie Woogie, Lindy Hop, Acrobatic Rock’n’Roll and Double Bugg. Bugg and Double bugg is a dance that are mostly danced in Sweden and a little bit in Norway and Denmark. This is the dance that are the biggest one in the competition scene. The dance has it origins from Lindy Hop or Jitterbug as it was called in Sweden during the Swing era. So when i first started taking courses at the age of 9 I got in contact with all of these dances including Lindy Hop.
– What got you hooked on Lindy?
For me it was the performance part of it. I early on got to see many of the dancers included in Rhythm & Harlem Hot Shot a long with many other dancers that have come and gone in the competition and performing scene. When I first went to Herräng 2008 I got a whole new picture painted with the social part of it and it was almost like I’ve seen the dance for the first time again.
– What does Lindy Hop mean to you?
Freedom, Music, Personality, Expression, Improvisation and personal connection.
– This will be your first trip to Australia, what are you looking forward to, excited about, unsure about?
I’ve been living with an Australian the last 4 years that is from Perth and have heard so many great things, both about Perth and Australia in general. So first of all I’m just excited to visit a new country and explore. I’m really looking forward to see a new scene and meet new dancers. Many places in Europe today have many dancers that look very similar, so it’s gonna be nice to see how the Australian scene & dancers move and talk about in the dance and culture. I don’t feel that unsure about anything, mostly excited!
– Who is your favourite dancer? Why?
There are so many great dancers out in the world, so it’s really hard to mention one. And I’ve never really been inspired by only one dancer or one thing. But If I would say a dancers or a duo in my case, I would say The Nicholas Brothers. They are just phenomenal dancers and artist, they have the whole thing. And the’ve been a true inspiration in my dancing.
– How are you contributing to the world Lindy Hop community?
I’m doing my best to pass on the dance, it’s history and it’s cultural inheritance by reading, training, dancing, teaching, talking and traveling around the world to share what I know and what I’ve learned and still learning about this culture. In Sweden I’m part of the team running Herräng Dance Camp which is since many years the leading and most comprehensive dance camp in the world focusing on the American vernacular swing dance tradition.
I’m also working with MandH production which is a production company run by Mattias & Hannah Lundmark doing a lot of projects. Everything from projects in schools for kids, (where they try to include the dance in there daily lives by adding it to the physical and cultural education) to taking a part in a Christmas Show (that are also produced by Sandra Klack) that are presented to people outside of the Lindy Hop community. Mattias and Hannah also runs Swing Kid at Herräng Dance Camp every year.
– What shoes do you recommend for dancing?
I’ve used KEDS since I started dancing, that’s the shoe I use if I need a more sticky surface for fast dancing. For a dress shoe I would go with Remix or FROM (By Chloe Hong)
Photo by Lina Martinkėnaitė