42nd Street

The amazing 42nd Street is now on in the West End and I would love to see it! I’m sure I heard that Kate Ivory Jordan (whose Beginner’s Tap Workshop I did in Brighton) is in it.

Anyway, I caught a clip of the cast performing on BBC1’s The One Show recently, and I don’t know why, but the first bit really makes me laugh. Watch for yourself!

Fallout 

Went to the glamorous and quirky neighbourhood of Notting Hill to see Old Kent Road’s tap show ‘Fallout’ on Thursday evening after work. 

OMG these people are so talented! If you get a chance to see some of their work… Do it! 

A totally engaging show, amazing tap skills and musicality. Founder Avalon Rathgeb is mesmerising to watch and the live band was fantastic. There was a half hour Q&A at the end where I was kind of poised to ask a question but kind of missed my chance… Or chickened out. 

What I really wanted to know was how they look after their feet! I mean, I’m only doing 1.5 hours a week and I get foot fatigue, aching toenails, blisters… 

Despite Storm Doris wreaking havoc during the day, Clive and I got there and back to the burbs no problem. 

Was great to see a few people from our Rhythm Tap classes at Morley in the audience as our teacher is Old Kent Road’s company manager. 

Watching these amazing dancers gave me renewed enthusiasm for Wednesday nights and left me wondering how I can put more hours in. 

An amazing evening all for only £15!

Suzy Q

Back in the tap studio this evening for Rhythm Tap 1 and 2 after having a week break for half term. I had a flu type virus from Thursday to Monday so I wasn’t sure how I’d be until today.

As is always the case at the beginning of a new 6 week block, we went over some of the basics and I was really glad to learn how to do a Suzy Q properly! We used it in a routine last time, but I realised as I was travelling, that I didn’t know what the heck I was supposed to be doing with my feet. Now that I know, I love it! It was the first stamp across the body that I was missing a few weeks ago.

We did lots tonight, our coordination was challenged and unusually for me, my knees are hurting. And my toes, but that’s not unusual.

Tomorrow night off to see Old Kent Road Tap company’s new show ‘Fallout’ at The Tabernacle in Notting Hill. Should be fun!

Review of Stepping Out at the Pump House

Last Thursday I went to Watford’s Pump House Theatre to watch a Belmont Theatre production of Stepping Out, written by Richard Harris and first performed in the West End in 1984. It was also made into a movie in 1991 starring Liza Minnelli and Julie Walters; I need to get this!

The story is basically about a group of people who attend a weekly tap class in their local church hall, each with their own foibles and quirks, and through the course of the play, snippets of their lives and backgrounds come to the fore. This, interspersed with a bit of tapping here and there, culminating in a final showstopper!

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I really enjoyed this performance at this little, intimate theatre (so intimate in fact, we saw people we knew, including one person in the play!). The acting was good, the setting was believably suburban, the jokes worked (if not a little forced in places), dramatic moments cut through the humour and the dance wear certainly caught your eye.

Now, as a tap student myself, I was really looking forward to seeing the tap dancing, but as this was presented by an amateur dramatics group, it wasn’t the best I’ve seen. Watching the final showstopper, I think there were maybe 2 or 3 ladies who have trained in tap dance, while the rest maybe hadn’t done any prior to this show (if they had, I apologise!). But, that made it all the more believable, rather than everyone suddenly becoming a perfected Ginger Rogers at the end. I like the fact that people sometimes trip over a line or speak at the same time as another character by accident, because that is the BEAUTY of LIVE performance. No editing. I’ve seen West End shows where the singer’s voice has cracked, or they got out of breath, or the stage equipment got stuck, and that shows that they’re human.

I would definitely recommend seeing a production of this show if you get the chance (or watch the film).

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