Nick & Joanna are both full time dance instructors and performers based in Northern California and are professors of swing at West Coast Swing University. Together they have over 40 years of dance experience and a passion for both teaching and performing. They have a unique, graceful and powerful style and are known for their exceptional social dance skills and as Jack & Jill competitors. They have many titles between them and are both US Open All-Star Jack & Jill Finalists.
Nick Jay has been swing dancing for 20 years and teaching for 11. He rocketed his way up the World Swing Dance Council (WSDC) standings and currently competes at the Champion level. Nick is known for his smooth style and great connection, which are reflected in his style of teaching. He is a patient and kind instructor with an excellent knowledge for both lead and follow. He even won 1st place in Champions Strictly as a follower at the Albuquerque Dance Festival with his brother Jason Wayne. Most recently this year Nick won 1st place in Champions Jack & Jill at the Frezno Dance Classic and 1st place in Champions Strictly Swing at South Bay Dance Fling 2012!
Joanna Meinl began her dance career in 1990, training in ballet, jazz and hip-hop. She went on to New York University continuing in the classical arts and also studying Anthropology and World Dance. She earned her B.A. in both Dance Performance/Choreography and Dance Ethnology. Following her academic studies Joanna continued her dance training in Ballroom, Latin and Swing dances at Dance Arts Studios where she became a certified instructor.
Joanna has been teaching dance for 15 years. As an instructor she incorporates both her exceptional technical training as well as her practical social dance experience into her teaching style. Joanna is known for her expressive musicality and graceful movements. Performing since the age of 14, she has quite a diverse background. Joanna has toured both nationally and internationally with the Embaje Dance Ensemble (Modern), the Chitresh Das Dance Company (Kathak, classical North Indian) and Sangre Latina Dance Company (SLDC - Salsa & Latin).
Since 2005 Joanna has performed and competed on the national West Coast Swing circuit and currently dances at the All-Star / Champion level. Joanna has won several WSDC sanctioned competitions including 1st places in Champions Jack & Jill's at Bridge Town Swing '08, South Bay Dance Fling '09 and Frezno Dance Classic 2010. In 2011 she received the Top Female Professional Award at Monterey SwingFest and won 1st place in the Champions Jack & Jill at the Northern California Swing Dance Challenge.
Nick & Joanna began partnering in late 2009 and continue to enjoy working together, teaching, traveling, competing, performing and sharing their love of the dance! Together in 2012 they won 1st place in Champions Strictly at Bridgetown Swing and 1st place in both Champions Jack & Jill and Cabaret at Mountain Magic!