#TapDancerStruggles: What To Do If Your College Tap Classes Aren't Hard Enough
In college dance programs, tap usually doesn't get the same kind of love as modern and ballet. So what's a serious tap dancer to do? Here's how to pick a program that will challenge you—and how to get by if your school doesn't offer enough tap.
Ask your teachers for help.
Oklahoma City University offers 10 levels of tap. Photo by Ryan Barrett, courtesy OKCU.
They're teaching to the level of the class, but they likely have more to offer, says Marymount Manhattan College senior MaryKate Walsh.
Look for a community in your area.
A tap class at Broadway Dance Center. Screenshot via YouTube.
Especially if your school is located in an urban setting, outside opportunities to tap probably exist.
Start your own club.
Ryan P. Casey. Photo by Cynthia Clayton, courtesy Casey
According to master tap teacher Ryan P. Casey, tap clubs often arise from situations where students aren't getting enough tap in their curriculum.
Online resources like Operation: Tap make it easy for you to give yourself class and learn combinations on your own or with friends.
Go to tap festivals.
Use your breaks from school to experience a variety of tap styles all in one place.
Just four years ago, the University of Southern California's Glorya Kaufman School of Dance welcomed its first class of BFA students. The program—which boasts world-class faculty and a revolutionary approach to training focused on collaboration and hybridity—immediately established itself as one of the country's most prestigious and most innovative.
Now, the first graduating class is entering the dance field. Here, six of the 33 graduates share what they're doing post-grad, what made their experience at USC Kaufman so meaningful and how it prepared them for their next steps:
Every dancer knows there's as much magic taking place backstage as there is in what the audience sees onstage. Behind the scenes, it takes a village, says American Ballet Theatre's wig and makeup supervisor, Rena Most. With wig and makeup preparations happening in a studio of their own as the dancers rehearse, Most and her team work to make sure not a single detail is lost.
Dance Magazine recently spoke to Most to find out what actually goes into the hair and makeup looks audiences see on the ABT stage.
On a sunny July weekend, hundreds of Seattle-area dance fans converged on tiny Vashon Island, a bucolic enclave in Puget Sound about 20 miles from the city. They made the ferry trek to attend the debut performance of the fledgling Seattle Dance Collective.
SDC is not a run-of-the-mill contemporary dance company; it's the brainchild of two of Pacific Northwest Ballet's most respected principal dancers: James Yoichi Moore and Noelani Pantastico. The duo wanted to create a nimble organization to feature dancers and choreographers they felt needed more exposure in the Pacific Northwest.