Tena Morales-Armstrong is a dedicated promoter and producer of several national dance events. She is currently co-producer of the International Lindy Hop Championships, Lindyfest, the Houston Jazz Dance Festival and International Swing Dance Championships. In the past she has also produced Atlanta's Swing and Soul Weekend and the Frankie Manning 95th Birthday celebration. She has served as the Artistic director of the Houston Hepcats and is also a National Lindy Hop Champion who has placed in the top three places in numerous Classic and Master divisions. She and her students won several 1st place titles in the American Lindy Hop Championship Pro-Am division. Tena Morales is an exciting choreographer and dancer, whose improvisations and innate musicality bring a unique "Old Skool Flava" to the Lindy Hop.
A nationally renowned swing dance teacher and judge, Tena has hosted the international "Hellzapoppin" dance contest at the World Famous Apollo Theatre in Harlem in conjunction with the Harlem Jazz Dance Festival and has served as a main judge for Camp Jitterbug, US Open, American Lindy Hop Championships, National Hand Dance Association and the Ultimate Lindy Hop Showdown .
Tena Morales is an exciting choreographer and dancer, whose improvisations and innate musicality bring a unique "Old Skool Flava" to the Lindy Hop. Tena grew up in the urban sophisticated atmosphere of the metropolitan D.C. area where "Hand Dancing" or "Fast Dance" reigns supreme. Tena takes her natural dancing abilities and fuses it with the individual Texas/Louisiana regional swing dance styles of Zydeco and "Swing-Out." Both two forms of partner dancing that are still very popular in that region of the country. Having taught hundreds across the country and trained many champions from the Houston Swing Dance Society, she has gained the admiration and respect of many.
Sylvia Sykes began dancing in 1966, competing in 1970, and teaching in 1979. She has studied with many of the dance greats, including Frankie Manning, Dean Collins, Maxie Dorf, and Willie Desatoff. Her extensive studies and travels have made her an expert on regional dance styles and she is known for her expertise in, and the preservation of the older forms of Swing dance. In addition, she is credited with helping to preserve the Balboa by introducing the dance World Wide.
In 1985 Sylvia and Jonathan Bixby co-founded the Santa Barbara Swing Dance Club, a twice-monthly live-music dance club that they continue to run. She is still teaching her weekly classes that she started teaching in 1979, plus she teaches out of town over forty weekends per year. She is the most sought-after head judge in the modern Lindy Hop & Balboa dance scenes and is now part owner and head judge of the International Lindy Hop Championships.
Her dance troupe ran for fifteen years, performed with some of the great Swing bands, and nurtured other International teachers. She has been a member of the Santa Barbara Dance Alliance since its inception, has taught at the University of California, and has appeared in many TV shows and in several documentaries on Swing dancing over the years.
Sylvia is actively judging and teaching various forms of Shag, Balboa, and Lindy Hop throughout the U.S., Europe, Australia, and Asia.
Awards & Accolades:
National Swing Dance Hall of Fame - inductee
California Swing Dance Hall of Fame - inductee
U.S. Open champion
NASDE top point winner
Two-time California Balboa Champion
Twice voted Swing Dance Teacher of the Year
Four-time Feather Award winner as Best Female Lindy Dancer in the U.S.