The Story

Around the year 2000, Phillip Kent started going around the Chicago Lindy scene and recording various events. He did this for a couple of years and accumulated over 100 hours of footage. Phillip’s intent was that someone would eventually use this footage to create a documentary of the Chicago Lindy scene. The footage was packed away and collected dust for the next 17 years.

Fast forward to now: I remembered Phillip and started wondering what happened to all that footage. Through the miracle of the internet (Thanks Tessa! Thanks Evan & Noah!) I was able to track down Phillip. It turned out that we both live in the same town. I contacted him and offered to convert all the footage to digital. Phillip was happy to hand that task over to me.

There was a lot of footage and as I started to convert it, I watched it. I’m not a documentary filmmaker, but I am a librarian, and I wanted to catalog and index this footage and make it available to the community at large. Phillip agreed and that was when I started creating the Chicago Lindy Hop Archive.

– Chris Rios, Librarian

What It Is

The Chicago Lindy Hop Archive includes but is not exclusive to video footage of Chicago Lindy Hoppers. This may include social dancing, performance, birthday dances, jams, line dances, etc. Currently the archive only contains footage from around 2000-2003 (More coming soon!), but I hope it will continue to grow.

If you have some footage that you would like to contribute (I’ll digitize tapes for you!) please contact me at or if you already have some video uploaded to Youtube and think it should be included here, send me a line with the link and I’ll post it (I’ll need to get some info from you first). If you’re out dancing in Chicago or the Chicagoland area or you’re elsewhere with Chicago-area dancers and you see something fun, ask the dancers if you can film them; get out your phone and take some footage or snap some photos.