Our Foolish Family
Co-founder, instructor, DJ
Neal has been dancing since 1979 and has taught over 25,000 people to swing dance! He has been part of the Boston west coast swing scene since the beginning and is one of the masterminds behind The Dancing Fools. Neal is also an Associate Professor at Lesley University, where he teaches a variety of psychology courses and a west coast swing course. While he holds a doctoral degree in education, don’t call him Dr. Klein- it scares him. Just Neal is fine!
Co-founder, DJ, setup/breakdown
Joe has been hanging around bars line dancing and country two-stepping since the dawn of time. One night he took a chance and went to a west coast swing class taught by a couple he had seen dancing in the bar and now we can’t get rid of him (and we don’t want to). Joe credits his father for instilling a love of both sports and dance into him, and now he is passionate about sharing that love with the next generation of dancers. When he’s not dancing or cheering on the Red Sox, Joe travels the globe for his salt company.
Rob was born dancing. While his first loves include ballet, modern, and tap dance, his talents quickly grew to encompass ballroom, country, line dance, Lindy Hop, shag, and more. Rob currently travels the world as an internationally recognized choreographer and performance coach. When he’s not jetting around for work and to Liverpool for football games (soccer for the Americans reading this), Rob enjoys the energy and community spirit of Wednesday nights. Each dancer’s eagerness to learn and willingness to help others always warms his cold English heart just a little bit.
After a few years of running the registration desk at Swingin’ New England, Willow stepped on the floor in 2005 and never looked back. Her extensive background in ballet, contemporary, and modern dance have helped her become a versatile dancer and instructor. Willow is an equally adaptable DJ and always looks forward to playing for the Wednesday night crowd. However, her true passion in life is curling up in bed with a giant container of dill pickles and snuggling with her rescue pup, Rodney.
One day in 2000, a friend brought Marcus to his first-ever dance class and he hasn’t left the floor since. Teaching is truly a passion for Marcus, and his understanding of the connection between two partners is shaped by over twenty years of martial arts experience. He has fallen in love with the energy and joy each dancer brings to classes and to the social floor. Marcus loves the Wednesday night crowd so much that he doesn’t actually exist during the rest of the week: he magically appears at 7:45pm on Wednesdays to prep for his lesson, then fades away at the stroke of midnight, not to be seen for another week.
Dylan beatboxed his way into Neal’s swing dance course in 2011 at the recommendation of a friend. While west coast swing is his first and truest dance love, Dylan has also dabbled in ballet and hip-hop. His favorite part about Wednesday nights is being surrounded by some of the kindest, most driven people on the planet. When he’s not hunting zombies or caught in high-speed getaway chases, you can find him at the bar- singing his way to glory.
Kyle, a software engineer and an athlete, was brought into the wild world of west coast swing in 2013 by his girlfriend at the time and fell head over heels in love with the dance. He has since grown to love the quirky community of people from all walks of life. Kyle’s existence outside of dancing consists solely of practicing for the next time he will dance or sitting hunched over a computer writing endless lines of code for robots.
Instructor, marketing coordinator
Alli has been dancing west coast swing since 2013 when she took Neal’s swing dance course her first semester of undergrad at Lesley University. Her favorite part about Wednesday nights is how generous everyone is with their skills, support, and time; it’s an amazing community of dancers who find joy in lifting each other up. Alli has also twirled baton (including fire baton!), captained the Boston University colorguard, and danced in multiple musicals. Off of the floor, she’s an early intervention clinician by day, a Clinical Mental Health Counseling graduate student by night, and a 24/7 chocolate consumer.
Adam’s dance background includes hip-hop, contemporary, and line dance. He picked up west coast swing on the sidelines at a line dance event and fell in love with the music and opportunities to incorporate other dance styles into a partner dance. Adam manages a liquor store and his fun fact is that he has no fun facts about himself.
After a lifetime of ballet, tap, jazz, and gymnastics, Lindsay was introduced to west coast swing while visiting her cousin in Atlanta in 2014. Now she travels all over the country to learn, teach, and burn it up on the competitive floor (despite her flat feet). Wherever she goes, Lindsay loves coming home to her Boston family where she always feels encouraged by her peers, students, and elders. On the rare occasions that she isn’t dancing, Lindsay works as a physical therapy aide, paints, and spends lots of time with her friends and family.
Elizabeth has been dancing since the age of three, starting with ballet and branching out to competitive jazz, hip-hop, and lyrical. She moved to Boston from Minnesoooooota (the proper pronunciation) in 2015 to attend Lesley University and took Neal’s swing dance course her first semester. Her favorite part of Wednesday nights is walking in and being greeted by so much smiling and laughter! Elizabeth continues to take solo dance classes in addition to dancing all over Boston, working on her bachelor’s in Expressive Arts Therapy and Business Management, and looking up pictures of puppies and hairless cats.
Roberto was introduced to Latin dancing at the age of eight by his parents. His extensive dance resume now includes line dance, ballroom, hip-hop, funk, and Zouk in addition to west coast swing. His favorite baked good is brownies- the chocolatey-er, the better.
Growing up, Lindsey learned and competed in the standard array of solo dance styles (jazz, tap, ballet, blah, blah, blah). Today, she’s a Thai massage therapist and avid home cook. Lindsey has been dancing west coast swing since 2016 when a friend brought her to a class and loves the warm community vibe on Wednesday nights. She has an eye for detail and extensive anatomical knowledge, but does not possess an appendix as she had it removed several years ago.
Bitson is a wizard at setting up and breaking down sound equipment in record time and is one of the most welcoming dancers in the room. He begrudgingly registered for Neal’s swing dance course at the behest of his advisor to take more liberal arts courses, but now we can’t get him off the floor! Bitson enjoys learning from the diverse experiences of our staff, special guests, and social dancers on Wednesday nights. He’s also a regular in the local poetry scene as both a listener and a writer/performer.
Photographer, setup/breakdown, teaching assistant
Michael’s dance journey began watching his younger sisters twirl baton. Michael continued to be an observer during college, showing up at Wednesday nights simply to watch and soak in the supportive community atmosphere for about a year. Now that he’s finally been bitten by the dance bug, it’s hard to get him off of the floor! By day, Michael is vibrational sound therapist, reiki master, and HVAC tech; by night, he is an equally versatile jack of all trades in the dance world as a photographer, teaching assistant, and more.
Bio coming soon!