Advanced Tap Dance Lessons : Tips on Improvisation for Advanced Tap Dancers

By Grover Koelpin 6 comments

Hi. This is Sarah McLellan in New York City.
We are at June Parody’s Dance Studio and, on behalf of Expert Village; today I’m going
to teach you some advanced tap moves. Follow me. One of the coolest things about being
a tap dancer, I think, is being able to improvise and kind of have some music on and be able
to just kind of jam out as a tapper. You know, it’s almost like being a musician in a band,
or a jazz band that is playing and suddenly, you know, everybody’s in sync and they just
go into a song and they improvise off what someone’s doing. You can do the same thing
as a tapper with beats, with kind of found sound, even if you’re listening to things
out on the street, the subway, the chigga-chigga of the train, the honking of car horns or
this or that. What you need to do though, I think, to be a good improvisational tapper
is to really have a good basic knowledge of steps. Because a teacher once said to me,
you can’t be a musician and suddenly want to improvise if you don’t know all of the
notes. And that’s the same thing as a tap dancer. A lot of people, I think, are daunted
by improvisation and that’s because they really haven’t solidified their knowledge of steps.
So that is my tip for you, to improvise, just practice and practice and practice. Get all
of your steps. Put some music on and just jam, whether it’s by yourself or in a group
and you can have a lot of fun. This is Sarah McLellan in New York City at June Parody’s
Studio and, on behalf of Expert Village, thanks for watching.



Aug 8, 2009, 8:23 am Reply



Apr 4, 2010, 4:50 am Reply

you're an amazing tapper. thank you for being so awesome! 😀

Dannielle DeAndrea

Jan 1, 2011, 11:53 pm Reply

Great tone, love your tapping!
Thank you for putting these up, I'm getting back into tap (after 20 years) and you're such a great help!
Awesome teacher
I'm an Aussie , living in LA (my ma teaches in Oz too)

Anup Singh

Jun 6, 2014, 4:41 pm Reply

very nyc videos

Anup Singh

Jun 6, 2014, 4:53 pm Reply

loved all ur videos


Dec 12, 2018, 10:51 am Reply

That doesn't really address the problem of how to improvise because when you dance you don't have time to "think" about the steps. It's much easier to think about the rythmn and the tone

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