Backstage Pass with Lia Chang

May 23: Frankie’s Centennial Savoy Ball Features the George Gee 17-Piece Swing Orchestra, Live Argentine Tango and More at The Edison Ballroom

ZORT MUSIC, Ltd. (Alan D. Sugarman) and
PROHIBITION PRODUCTIONS (Patrick Soluri) present
George Gee. Photo by Lia Chang

George Gee. Photo by Lia Chang

Frankie’s Centennial Savoy Ball

Friday May 23, 2014

The Edison Ballroom

240 West 47th Street

New York City

7:30 PM to 2:00 AM

Savoy Ball Web Site

With the George Gee 17-Piece Swing Orchestra

The new late night Spectacular Show On the Main Ballroom features International Stars of Argentine Tango – Dancers Jorge Torres & Maria Blanco and Vocalist Hector Pablo Pereyra with Pedro Giraudo’s Trio. On the swing side, famed Lindy Hop dancer and choreographer Ryan Francois, a protege of Frankie’s and the star of the Broadway Musical “Swing,”- and just two weeks ago performed at the Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Gala. Starting off the evening will be the Youth Orchestra of Jazz at Lincoln Center – 21 talented young musicians from the tri-state region.

Live Big Band Music and Dancing!! 

Celebrating the Life of Frankie Manning In
A Gorgeous 1930s Ballroom with 
Two 17-Piece Big Bands 
Tickets are $120—-$145 at Door
Buffet and Premium Open Bar all night INCLUDED WITH TICKET!!!!
For Dancing, No Tables on the Dance Floor

Featured Performers

In the Main Ballroom

George Gee 17-Piece Swing Orchestra 

Roddy Caravella and the Varsity Syncopators

Syncopated City Dance Company

Lindy DJ Tomo

In the Upstairs Lounge – Live Argentine Tango

Pedro Giraudo and his Mala Junta Tango Trio

Tango-Swing DJ Anthony Blackwell

Dandy Wellington and His Band (swing)

New Performances!!

Come Support the New Generation of Musicians and Dancers!

To Honor the Vitality of the Spirit of Frankie

We Present:

Jazz at Lincoln Center Youth Orchestra (Opening Set)

Dancing Classrooms Youth Lindy Hop Dancers


(a limited number of VIP Tables still available)

Frankie Manning 1914-2009 

Swing dancer extraordinaire Frankie Manning was a leading dancer at Harlem’s legendary Savoy Ballroom where, in the mid-1930s, he revolutionized the course of the lindy hop with his Lindy air step. As a featured dancer and chief choreographer for the spectacular Whitey’s Lindy Hoppers, he created the timeless synchronized ensemble Lindy routine that has been used as the ultimate inspiration for Lindy Hoppers of today. He performed in numerous films (including Hellzapoppin’), and entertained on stages around the world with jazz greats Ethel Waters, Count Basie, Duke Ellington, Ella Fitzgerald, and Cab Calloway.

George Gee with his new CD Swing Makes You Happy" at the CD Release Party at Swing 46 in New York on May 20, 2014. Photo by Lia Chang

George Gee with his new CD Swing Makes You Happy” at the CD Release Party at Swing 46 in New York on May 20, 2014. Photo by Lia Chang

George Gee is an internationally renowned swing Big Band leader who holds court every Tuesday night at the Swing 46 Jazz & Supper Club with his Orchestra, who has just released his new CD “Swing Makes You Happy!” which features some of NYC’s top big band musicians performing the compositions, arrangements and transcriptions by David Gibson, Music director and Trombonist. The lush tones of singers Hilary Gardner and John Dokes are also featured.


The Producers 

The Producers. Zort Music (Alan Sugarman) and Prohibition Productions (Patrick Soluri). Alan Sugarman was the producer in 1999 of Frankie’s 85th Birthday Celebration at Roseland Ballroom, attracting 1800 dancers on one dance floor, with Frankie, for his birthday.

Prohibition Productions and The Salon (Patrick Soluri) have been producing popular lounge and swing events since 2001 at the Player’s Club, the Edison Ballroom, the Empire Hotel, and the Copacabana – and the just completed Hot Jazz Festival.

The Savoy Ball is part of Frankie’s Trifecta – three nights of festive dancing.


Other articles by Lia Chang:
May 20: George Gee Swing Orchestra CD – “Swing Makes You Happy!” Party at Swing 46 Jazz & Supper Club
Photos: The George Gee Swing Orchestra at SWING46; Launches Indiegogo Campaign for New CD, Swing Makes You Happy
Branden Jacob-Jenkins’ Appropriate, Lisa Kron’s Fun Home, Sonya Tayeh, Emmanuel Brown, Mia Katigbak, K. Todd Freeman, John Earl Jelks Among 2014 OBIE Award Winners
May 18: Asia Flores Debuts Royal72Co Fashion Line at Pa’ina Lounge
Jun. 23: The Black Stars of The Great White Way Broadway Reunion: Live The Dream at Carnegie Hall Features Chapman Roberts, Norm Lewis, André De Shields, Chuck Cooper, Brandon Victor Dixon and More
Jun. 4-29: Tony Award–winner BD Wong Leads Cast of A.C.T.’s U.S. Premiere of Orphan of Zhao, a co-production with La Jolla Playhouse
Photos: André Braugher, Ami Brabson, Christine Toy Johnson, Antoinette LaVecchia, Richard Topol, Victor Williams, Nikkole Salter, Elizabeth Van Dyke at Oni Faida Lampley’s Tough Titty at the Paradise Factory
Photos: Harriet Harris, John Tartaglia, Christine Toy Johnson, Alan Muraoka, James Saito and More celebrate Ann Harada’s Debut at Lincoln Center in the American Songbook Series 
Lucille Lortel Awards for Here Lies Love, Fun Home, The Open House, Good Person of Szechwan
A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder Leads 2014 Tony Award Nominations; Bryan Cranston, LaTanya Richardson, Neil Patrick Harris, Mark Rylance, Audra McDonald, Leigh Silverman among nominees
Signature Theatre to Be Honored with the 2014 Regional Theatre Tony Award
Photos: Late Night with Holy Land’s Jojo Gonzalez
Photos: Bryan Cranston, Peter Jay Fernandez, Roslyn Ruff, Tamara Tunie, Leslie Uggams, Ruben Santiago-Hudson Celebrate All The Way Opening Night
Photos: André De Shields, Michael Shannon, Rajiv Joseph, Christine Sherrill, Doug Peck, Alexis J. Rogers, Karen Ziemba and More Celebrate 2013 Jeff Equity Awards
Photos: Backstage and Opening Night of Signature’s World Premiere of David Henry Hwang’s Kung Fu
Photos: David Henry Hwang, Annie Baker and Rajiv Joseph honored at Sixth Annual Steinberg Playwright “Mimi” Awards
Q & A with Meet Me in St. Louis: A Live Radio Play’s Garth Kravits
Photos: The 58th Annual Drama Desk Awards and After Party
Celebrating my mom – AN ACTIVE VISION: BEVERLY UMEHARA…LABOR ACTIVIST…1945-1999 Crafting a Career
Click here for the Lia Chang Articles Archive and here for the Lia Chang Photography Website.

Lia Chang

Lia Chang

Lia Chang is an actor, a performance and fine art botanical photographer, and an award-winning multi-platform journalist. Lia recently starred as Carole Barbara in Lorey Hayes’ Power Play at the 2013 National Black Theatre Festival in Winston-Salem, N.C., with Pauletta Pearson Washington, Roscoe Orman, Lorey Hayes, Marcus Naylor and Phynjuar, and made her jazz vocalist debut in Rome Neal’s Banana Puddin’ Jazz “LADY” at the Nuyorican Poets Cafe in New York.  She is profiled in Jade Magazine.

All text, graphics, articles & photographs: © 2000-2014 Lia Chang Multimedia. All rights reserved. All materials contained on this site are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of Lia Chang. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content. For permission, please contact Lia at


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