Reading tap 1

Dance · Film · Language & ideas · Reviews
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Dancing, like writing, is a craft before it is an art. Rare is the professional who excels at both; the thousands of hours of practice necessary to make an artist rarely allow time for rigorous training in another genre. Somewhere between the craft and the art, though, lie scholarship and criticism, and the world is ...

Dance DNA: The Nicholas Brothers honored at the Alex 1

Dance · Film
What caused these two dancers, each bringing his own qualities and characteristics, to meld and synergize into a ballistic dance unit known as The Nicholas Brothers? Sly Stone said it best: “It’s a family affair.” This was the implicit message delivered across an incredibly fun Sunday evening spent with the two handsome and talented gentlemen ...

Catch it! Dance-movie posters @ The Pillow

Dance
We last saw arts·meme friend Mike Kaplan at the wonderful display of his vast collection of dance movie posters at the William Rolland Gallery of Fine Art at California Lutheran University in Thousand Oaks. Now Mike turns up in the company of lovely Marge Champion, the special honoree of his current poster show, GOTTA DANCE!, at ...

Savion Glover, sole survivor

Dance · Reviews
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I’ve been paying attention to Savion Glover since he incandesced onto the theatre scene in The Tap Dance Kid at age 12. His level of virtuosity, enhanced by a cheeky grin and genuine joy at being up there just doin’ it! as impossible to resist as a warm sunny day (I live in London, remember). ...

Nicholas Brothers ballistic on silver screen 1

Dance · Film
Joy to the world, the place to be at 4:30 this afternoon was the balcony of the Egyptian Theater, a spot that offered prime viewing, on opening day of CINECON Classic Film Festival, of DOWN ARGENTINE WAY (1940). The über-fun Betty Grable/Don Ameche technicolor south-of-the-border extravaganza from 20th Century-Fox was Grable’s first headlining role at ...

Preeminent dance movie posters @ Barnsdall

Dance · Film · Visual arts
We’re super looking forward to touring through a wonderful installation of dance movies posters now on display at Barnsdall Gallery Theater. We already saw it once, but it’s so fabulous that repeat viewings are called for. Twenty distinct pieces in varying sizes and rarity comprise GOTTA DANCE!, the majority dating from the golden age of ...

Marie Bryant put a bun in Betty Grable’s oven 5

Dance · Film
The silken jazz dancer, Marie Bryant (1919-1978), seen here jiving with the great Harold Nicholas, was, for a time, rehearsal assistant to Jack Cole. That’s interesting. Cole’s performance group was all white. It wouldn’t be otherwise. But he clearly relied on Bryant for special tasks. Asked what she did for Jack Cole, Bryant replied,  “I ...