For the 5th year in a row, the Jersey Tap Fest is back! Now through August 17th, New Jersey's sole dance festival brings world-class tappers and teachers, the one-night-only TAP 'N TIME showcase, plus a new initiative that has offered participating dance students a total of $5,000 in scholarships. In addition, the festival awards the public various opportunities to participate and interact with tap dancing through a history lesson, jam session, student showcase, and faculty meet and greet.
Dance Classes: The festival returns to Bloomfield, New Jersey offering over 30 tap classes taught by an excellent line up of teachers including Jason Samuels Smith, Dormeshia Sumbry-Edwards, Hillary-Marie Michael, Evan Ruggiero, Hank Smith, Kyle Wilder, Deborah Mitchell, Jason Janas, Josie Say, Karen Callaway Williams, Jeff Foote, Maurice Chestnut, Sean Fielder, Nicholas Young, and Andrew Atkinson.
TAP 'N TIME: The August 16 showcase begins at 7:30 p.m. at Bloomfield College’s Westminster Arts Center, hosted by Bessie Award-winner Caleb Teicher and featuring ensemble work and presentations by young emerging tap dance artists. Directed by Hillary-Marie Michael, this year's TAP ‘N TIME highlights include performances by Dormeshia Sumbry-Edwards, Jason Samuels Smith, Jason Janas, Karen Callaway Williams, Jeff Foote, Kyle Wilder, Hillary-Marie Michael, Boston Tap Company, and more. In addition, the inspirational one-legged tap dancer Evan Ruggiero, whose story was recently featured on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, also joins the program. Tickets range from $20 for students to $25 for the general public and may be purchased online, by phone (973-932-0561), or at the Westminister Arts Center box office.
About Jersey Tap Fest: Founded in 2010, by Hillary-Marie Michael, Jersey Tap Fest is New Jersey's sole dance festival featuring world-class tap faculty. The festival is focused on serving tap dance by uniting the tap community, teaching its history, preserving its percussive and improvisational style, expanding the art and promoting tap as a cherished American art form. The demanding and rigorous annual program provides repertoire and master classes, which provide tappers opportunities to improve their technical abilities, hone their performance skills, network within the community and increase their overall knowledge of the art form. Jersey Tap Fest celebrates non-competitive opportunities of self-advancement for the basic tapper, tap teacher, tap enthusiast, pre-professional and professional artist and tap master.
Michael notes, “Jersey Tap Fest is a family dance festival, the family grows ever year and while reflecting on the past four years, all I can do is give continuous thanks and look forward to an amazing 5th anniversary. I wanted to help educate the world of the tap masters that have spurred from Jersey—and we've been able to not only celebrate local masters each year but also provide an unprecedented opportunity for tap enthusiasts to find a home for exploration and intuitive performance through this intensive training.”