11th Annual TAP KIDS Summer Intensive
After a decade in Tarrytown, NY, the TK Summer Intensive was held in beautiful Burlington, VT this past July. This year’s faculty included Jason Samuel Smith, who spent 3 days with the dancers and set a piece called “Jeannine” that was performed with the Tom Cleary Trio in the showcase performance at the historic Flynn Theatre. Dancers also learned and performed new choreography by faculty members Lisa LaTouche and Ayodele Cassel, Max Pollak, Lisa Hopkins, Mark Goodman & Jimmy Tate. Master African dance and drummers Jeh Kulu and artistic director Sidiki Sylla, classes in African dance and drumming were one of the highlights of the workshop as was the “In the Pocket” class in improvisation lead by Max Pollak and Tom Cleary. The TK annual team cutting contest was very exciting this year, the level of improvisation was so high that the judges had to throw random time signatures at the dancers in order to eliminate anyone. After an exciting series of trades between Demi Remick (for “Purple Pain”) and Brittany DeStefano (for “The Flamingos”), the title went to Brittany DeStefano whose team was dancing for breast cancer. Unlike a traditional cutting contest, at TAP KIDS, the dancers don’t dance for themselves, they dance for their team and the proceeds go to a charity selected by the winning team.
The tap jam & cruise on Lake Champlain aboard “The Spirit of Ethan Allen”, was a night to remember and a chance for dancers, faculty and friends to mingle and jam and take a much needed break on the 3 hour sunset cruise. Faculty member Jimmy Tate even took out his guitar and serenadedthe crowd with an impromptu performance on the deck.
The Tap Kids summer intensive began as a workshop for pre-professional dancers in 2000, dancers from across the US and Canada apply each year by videotape audition for the chance to participate. Only 75 kids are accepted. The professional touring show “TAP KIDS” premiered in 2002 and has since played at major theatres in more than 35 states, traveled to Mexico twice and The Netherlands three times including a command performance in Amsterdam for the Queen of Holland. "TAP KIDS" earned rave reviews for their month long run at The Edinburgh Fringe Festival in Scotland in August 2009 and received the first 5-Star review of the entire festival. Other performance highlights a National television spot on the Jerry Lewis MDA Telethon and working with children at Paul Newman's "Hole in the Wall Gang Camp".
The 12th annual TK Summer Intensive is scheduled for July 15th – 23rd, 2011 in Burlington, VT. New this year is a teacher’s program.