This evening I decided to actually practice the routines for tomorrow’s tap class, using what I filmed 2 weeks ago. I know I missed what extra they learned last week, but it won’t be so bad if I get the first bit right!
Last night a dance friend and I went to watch 42nd Street at the Theatre Royal in Covent Garden’s Drury Lane, which I believe is the West End’s largest stage. On arrival we just HAD to take a photo opportunity with the chorus girls before going into the theatre! We originally had tickets for the upper circle, but we were *upgraded* to the grand circle a tier below where we got an amazing view of the entire stage! I don’t know if this is because the theatre wasn’t full or because of the heatwave (those old theatres can be saunas), but heat rises, and they seemed to have some sort of of aircon going where we were, thankfully.
The show was absolutely amazing! The sets were brilliant, the costumes captured the 1930s Hollywood golden age and I loved the chorus girls’ colourful tap shoes! The songs were great, with a few you would recognise (such as We’re in the money, and Keep young and beautiful) but the choreography and dance was spectacular! Of course I was watching the Tap Dance from a tap student’s perspective where you are trying to recognise steps… and it was just amazing how talented these people are! Of course they’ve been tapping since they could walk, so there’s no point comparing starting to learn as an adult!
I was also keen to see the show because a couple of dancers who were involved with the Brighton Tap Festival last year are in it (plus I also spotted the sister of a former school friend in the programme).
My verdict: A visual spectacular! If you love musicals, dance, the Hollywood golden age or just want a great night out, go and see it!
After work yesterday I decided to walk from Waterloo to Charing Cross (with a sneaky stop at H&M and Holland and Barrett) to enjoy the sunshine and beautiful blue skies. On Waterloo Bridge I took a photo of the Rambert dance studios, where I’ll be attending their 1-day Adult Dance Intensive on 31st July – It’s the boxy building directly behind the police van!
This week I have sorted out what dance I am going to do this Summer, after hearing that there is no Brighton Tap Festival this year.
Yesterday I booked onto Tap Shim Sham with my usual tap teacher, which takes place at Morley on Wednesday 12th July. As it will be a late one getting home, I’m taking the next day off work!
Secondly, I have gone all out and booked a place on the first day of the 2-day Adult Summer Dance Intensive with Rambert, based at Waterloo! I’m nervous, but also really excited! It will give me a chance to do something non-Tap. I’ve been chatting with a lady at Tap class about doing something along the lines of ballet barre or yoga to stretch out a bit, so I might mention it to her if she’s there this evening. It involves Contemporary dance technique, repertoire, choreography and some yoga and Pilates to finish! I’ve booked the following day off so I can recover LOL.
I’ve also since discovered, that my tap teacher is also doing a 2 hour Tap Improvisation & Composition class on Weds 19th July! That would be great, but not sure if that will be one thing too many, with work and the possibility of moving house… Must pace myself.
Anyone else doing any summer schools or festivals this year? How do you find fitting in dance classes and work (and commuting?)?
Found out last week that there will be NO Brighton Tap Festival this year! Noooo! It was so good last year. The organisers said it is due to personal circumstances and venues being refurbished. However, they will be back in 2018 bigger and better! Looking forward to that.
In the meantime I have joined Associated Tap Dancers (ATD) who organise tap events throughout the year, so I can be in the loop on all of their Dancer’s Days Out and festivals, which take place all over the UK! I am quite interested in the DDO taking place in Surrey soonish. There is also a festival in Torquay at the end of June, but I’m not sure I want to travel that far as I may be moving house this Summer. I’m trying to have a go at other tap workshops just to put what I’ve been learning into practice.
Another thing I saw was a Tap Show UK tour from September to November by TAP FACTORY! The promo looks amazing and they will be coming to Watford and South Bucks which aren’t far from home at all. Must get tickets!
Last night I went to Rhythm Tap 1 & 2 after a really dull day at work. I wasn’t sure if I was tired from work or boredom, but there we are. Anyway, got there and then I found some energy from somewhere!
In level 1 we spent a lot of time practising flaps. Because these are quite familiar now, I had a go at jazzing it up and playing around with different speeds and timings, which was noted by my teacher. (Didn’t realise she was watching!) Our routine is to Take That’s Let it Shine!
I was sensible this time and filmed the routine at the end because I NEVER remember the level 1 routine. (Sorry, I can’t share this!)
After running to put my phone back in my bag as level 2 peeps came in, I barely had a breather before the next class warm-up began!
In level 2 we practised some more complex pick-up exercises (I’d been practising at home because last week I got completely lost) and some crawls to Mark Ronson’sUptown Funk (feat. Bruno Mars). A really fun co-ordination exercise!
Then we moved onto our routine which is to…I don’t know what the track is actually. Maybe I should ask. But I’m really enjoying it! Lots of crawls and three leaps with a heel click in the air! I also took the opportunity again to film it at the end.
Got home, ate, showered and stretched and used my spiky ball rollers on my feet and legs.
Last night I went back to Rhythm Tap 1 and 2. I was half looking forward to it and half not, having had flu the previous 2 weeks, but once I got there I was back in the zone! I have to say the classes have become really popular (we have a great teacher and the style is modern and upbeat), so it was quite full. It was also nice to see faces from last term back again.
We did some more complex steps travelling backwards across the room, adding in some extra heels here and there. We were also working on tapping in triple time, i.e. 3 beats to a bar, like a waltz. Thankfully I had clarinet lessons when I was at school, so I understand musical time signature to a point. At the moment I am trying to work on keeping down in the knees and making the steps smaller and more accurate. Easier said than done!
Because the class size is so big, I am finding it a little hard not to get pulled into what the crowd are doing, which tends to be speeding up like a military march and ignoring the beat of the music! Last night I tried to ignore that and feel the music and not worry about being the last one to get to the other side of the room. It’s more important to get the steps right than get there first!
Highlight of the class: heel click in the air!
Things to practice this weekend:
Pickups travelling backwards with extra heels (no clawing!)
Shuffle exercise travelling forwards and changing feet