Taptastic #TBT Time: 3 Must-See Classic Tap Numbers
This #TBT, we're feeling the tap vibes—specifically, the old-school, golden-age-of-Hollywood tap vibes. Because while you're probably familiar with, say, Gene Kelly's (literally) splashy "Singin' in the Rain" number, the glorious internet has (to continue the water metaphor) a much, much deeper pool of jaw-dropping movie routines from the 30s, 40s and 50s. And you need to dive into it. NOW.
We suggest starting with three of our all-time favorites:
3) Ann Miller in "Too Darn Hot" from Kiss Me Kate (1953). Miller would've turned 93 two days ago, and there's no better way to celebrate than with this impossibly sexy, impossibly intricate party of a number:
2) Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers in "I Won't Dance," from Roberta (1935). This clip shows off not just Astaire's fantastically finessed tapping (serious dancing starts around 3:12), but also his singing and piano-playing skills. (Rogers fans: She doesn't get to move a whole lot in this routine, so if you're looking for a Ginger fix, click here, here and here.)
1) The Nicholas Brothers in "Jumpin' Jive" from Stormy Weather (1943). Astaire called this "the greatest dance number ever filmed," and he wasn't exaggerating. It gives us Fayard and Harold Nicholas—who, fun fact, later taught Michael and Janet Jackson—at their masterful, exuberant best, and includes the showstopping jump-splits that were one of their signatures.
Happy #TBT, tappers! And if you're in the mood for even more amazing dance movie moments, head this way.
(From left) Darriel Johnakin, Diego Pasillas, and Emma Sutherland (all photos by Erin Baiano)
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Dancers are naturally "in their heads" all the time—but not always in productive ways. Long days of receiving and applying corrections, taking class, and performing can get to even the most composed individuals. What should you do when you feel like your mind is just as busy as your rehearsal schedule? Try meditation. Dance Spirit turned to Adreanna Limbach, a head teacher at NYC-based meditation studio MNDFL, for a breakdown of this highly beneficial practice.
Liz Imperio teaching at Hollywood Vibe, Courtesy of Hollywood Vibe
It's an increasingly common scenario: A talented dancer wins big at a competition, is offered an assistantship with a famous faculty member, and ends up leaving her hometown studio to travel with a convention. Convention-hopping has obvious benefits. Every event generates new content for dancers to post on social media, gives them a better shot at ending up on their favorite choreographers' accounts, lets them learn from the best of the best, and helps them make valuable connections. "Traveling is a great way for dancers to gain admirers around the country," says Jen Jarnot, owner of Artistic Fusion Dance Academy in Thornton, CO. "That's something every dancer craves." So it's no surprise that weekend FOMO has been blazing through studios like wildfire.
But is this jet-setter lifestyle really the most effective road to take? Can weekends of dancing with top talent truly replace the bread and butter of daily work at your home studio? The answer, according to most industry experts, is no. We asked five pros to explain why.