Instructors

Nika Jin

Nika is based in Eugene, OR and has been teaching and organizing Lindy Hop related shenanigans since 2013. She is known for her lighthearted teaching style, and she pays special attention to cultivating a warm and enthusiastic learning environment. Her ultimate goal when she teaches is to help people feel comfortable in their own bodies, and unlock the simple but infinite joy that is moving to music. Nika loves jazz dance because it is her way of connecting with jazz music. Finding a great song will always be what inspires her the most, whether it’s preparing for a class or creating a choreography. Nika has won several competitions and been a finalist in many others, but her priority will always be going ham on the dance floor. She also loves tea, burritos, and climbing on stuff. Photo credit: Amanda L Smith Photography

Melissa Roane + Colin Livesey

Melissa and Colin are longtime local dancers teaching out of Portland’s very own Viscount Studio. They have traveled both nationally and internationally to pursue their passion for Lindy Hop, and they create a fun and light atmosphere in class while not being afraid to dig into the nitty-gritty of the dance. As avid social dancers, they’re always looking for new ways to help their students connect to the music and to their partner. Melissa is also one of Portland’s preeminent DJs. Her extensive knowledge and vast library ensure that her classes and dances always have the perfect soundtrack accompaniment. Photo credit: Evrim Icoz Photography

Kali Henson

Kali is a professional dance instructor and performer currently residing in Portland, OR. She began dancing Lindy Hop and Salsa in 2010, which led to teaching in a Ballroom and Latin studio in the Midwest. She is passionate about body awareness and connecting to one’s partner, as well as finding your own voice within a dance partnership. Since 2014, she has competed in Lindy Hop, Blues, and West Coast Swing, winning many placements across the US. Kali is a Director of the Portland Rhythm Shakers, a professional and competitive solo jazz troupe. She also enjoys weight lifting, yoga, and hip hop as forms of cross-training.

Austin Neverman

Austin is a dance enthusiast and professional instructor based in Portland, OR. He competes and performs internationally, as both a Lead and a Follow. Austin began growing his native Iowan swing scene in 2009. Since 2012, has expanded his professional repertoire to include Ballroom dancing, Argentine Tango, and West Coast Swing. On any given week, you can find Austin playing DJ at Stumptown Dance, dishing out moves for the Portland Lindy Society, or coaching his students individually. While his dancing incorporates many influences, he strives to project a playful ethos accented by dynamic choices. Photo credit: Steve Hwan

Josh McLaughlin + Emily Moore

In 2003, Josh took a Lindy Hop class in Eugene, OR and fell in love with it immediately. He began teaching, DJing, and performing in 2005. Eventually, Josh moved to Portland, OR to further his career in the arts.

Emily has been dancing since she was three years old.  In 2005, she started swing dancing and couldn’t get enough of it. She began teaching a couple of years later and started to travel outside of Portland to further her dancing.

In 2008, Josh and Emily started teaching together, as well as working on choreographed routines, competing, DJing, and judging in Portland and out of town. They have traveled both nationally and internationally to teach Balboa, Lindy Hop, and Charleston. Josh and Emily have a special love for Balboa, which is evident in their dancing.

Darcie Juarez

Darcie has loved Lindy Hop since she went to her first swing dance in 2006. She has been dancing in Portland since 2016 and has been teaching since 2018. Darcie strives to aid dancers in connecting to each other and the music while empowering followers to constructively add their voice to the dance. Her classes emulate her fun and lighthearted spirit, reminding her students to take joy in the dance even when working on something challenging.

Matt Hughey + Cassie Mae

Cassie and Hughey have a passion for dancing, competing, and teaching all forms of jazz dancing, but their current love is Collegiate Shag. They moved to the Portland area in 2019, and they are super excited to teach at the Portland Lindy Exchange this year!

Hughey started dancing in the Phoenix Lindy scene in 2008 at a local venue called the Kats Korner. With a background in jazz as a percussionist/drummer, he found dancing as another flavor for expressing the music. After his first Camp Hollywood in 2012, he was hooked for life. Hughey ran and operated two venues for 2 1/2 years, Hotel San Carlos “Ghost Lounge” and “Café la Swing”. Dancing Lindy, Blues, Collegiate Shag, Balboa, and Carolina Shag, he started competing at local, national, and international events. His greatest achievement was winning 2nd place in the Camp Hollywood Shag Mix & Match – a National Jitterbug Champion!  

Cassie Mae is an ambitious dancer from the Phoenix Lindy scene, and began her jazz dance adventure in 2016. Dancing has always been a passion of Cassie’s as her greatest form of self-expression. Coming in strong, she joined and competed with the Phoenix Bomb Squad in the student team division at Camp Hollywood in 2018 and the open team division in 2019. The team won 1st place both years. 

All class descriptions and instructors are subject to change without notice. Final information will be available at the event.