Aila and Peter have been instrumental in the huge increase in popularity of Shag dance in the UK – both Collegiate and St Louis. Bringing back inspiration, histories and repertoire from key proponents of Shag in the US and worldwide, as well as extensively researching the dance themselves, they have brought shag to a wider audience. Their company, Shag Pile, is the leading school of shag dance in the UK. We are very lucky to have Aila and Peter teaching taster (and extra) classes in Collegiate Shag and St Louis Shag on Sunday!

Aila first developed a passion for swing dancing over 10 years ago in London, where she continues to dance and teach. As well as reigning supreme in shag, winning first place with Peter at ‘Rock That Swing’ 2015, Aila is a Lindy Hop champ, winning with dance partner Richard Pucci at the ‘European Swing Dance Championships’ 2013. She has featured in music videos for George Michael and KT Tunstall. As choreographer and director of internationally renowned flapper troupe, ‘The Bee’s Knees’, she has performed all over the world including appearances at the Venice carnival. The troupe has featured on TV shows including ‘Paul O’Grady’(C4), ‘Endeavour’ (ITV) and ‘Nina Conti’s VaVaVariety show’(BBC).

Peter took up dance lessons 9 years ago after gatecrashing a party and finding himself unable to dance to fantastic music. Founder of ‘Shag Pile’ and co-founder of monthly club night ‘Kings X Swing’, his love of Shag is infectious. and has taken him around the UK, and Europe, teaching in London, Oxford, Newcastle, Gothenburg, Paris and more. He has performed at festivals around the UK with the Mudflappers, at the Royal Albert Hall with the London Swing Cats, and at Secret Cinema’s ‘Watchmen’ and ‘Back to the Future’ events.