Joyce Marks Codner  

After 5+ years of teaching together, Joyce finally fulfilled her heart's desire: in August 2002, she moved back to Boston, where she had lived for over 17 years.

I have been very fortunate to partner with her: Joyce is a natural dancer. She has the kind of rhythm and abandon that takes your breath away, and puts you right in the moment of watching her: moments of pure joy.

We met in a Lindy Hop Class taught by beloved instructors Jean DePalma (passed on) and Aswin Van Der Berg, in January 1997. But Joyce insists that it was December 1996. (And there you have the summary of Joyce & Kurt in one nutshell: we agree to disagree, and boy has there been plenty of that!).

She asked me if I would like to practice together. I had been looking for a regular practice partner for some time: I had found some nice people, but I wanted to practice a LOT! I said, "sure." We got together once to try it out. That became twice, three times a week, four, five times a week, and sometimes more, for weeks on end!

We started the Cornell Swing Classes together: our first Fall 1997class filled up in registration in 2 hours. We asked the Department Chair, Al Gantert, for another section, and filled that one by the end of the day. The waiting list went to over 300. Then THREE Intro sections, then a Level Two section. We began studying Latin Dance: Salsa, Merengue, then Waltz, etc.

Together, we developed Jump Swing, gradually discovering the ways most of our students felt comfortable dancing, and the kind of energy most wanted to express. AND the way Joyce wanted to dance as well: Charlestons, Jazz.

We have done some c r a z y things together: we danced to 50s Rock 'n' Roll and did aerials on the back of a moving flat bed truck in a parade in Big Flats. We performed Route 66 to the accompaniment of the Ithaca College Jazz Choir, with aerials on a stage criss-crossed with microphone cables, to a packed house of IC Alumni in Ford Hall. We danced all day in Sam Goody's Record Store in Horseheads, aerials, the works: trying to drum up interest in an Elmira Jitterbug Club. Live Dancing in TV studios for the same cause. We went to New Jersey to dig up Steve Colinaro, a regular from American Bandstand, to find out more about 50s style dancing. And to Augusta, Georgia in our enthuiasm to learn more about Carolina Shag,

From our web bio: "Joyce has a B.A. from Adelphi in Education. She has an extensive folk dance background: Balkan, Greek, Israeli, etc. with over 20 years of dance experience. Joyce is from Brooklyn NY, but Boston is her second home. Her favorite extracurricular activity is working in her garden." She has a garden in the back yard of her new Boston home by the Charles River. I offer this Homage to my very dear friend and former dance partner Joyce Marks Codner.