Each year tap celebrations are held throughout the nation in honor of Bill “Bojangles” Robinson’s birthday. Starting the week of April 30th the Minnesota Conservatory for the Arts (MCA) begun rehearsals to prepare for the 2018 National Tap Dance Day Celebration Showcase in Como Park Lakeside Pavilion in Saint Paul, MN on Sunday, May 27th, 11am- 2pm.
The Twin Cities National Tap Dance Day celebration is just one that happens throughout the nation during the month of May, celebrating Bill “Bojangles” Robison who was an American tap dancer who was one of the first African American performers to go solo and to over come many racial barriers in the early 20th century. Bojangles is best remembered today for his dancing with Shirley Temple during a series of the films during the 1930’s and for starring in Stormy Weather which is loosely based on his life. Tap for Kids and Tap I students will be dancing to “Hair Up” from the Trolls movie, Intermediate Tap II & III students are tapping to “He’s a Pirate”, and MCA’s Tap IV & V Advanced students will be performing a piece called “Laura” in collaboration with the Twin Cities based Keane Sense of Rhythm Youth Tap Ensemble and a performance of the historical “Shim Sham Shimmy” with students from other participating dance schools. Additionally, Tap V student, Nathan Graff will perform his senior solo, “In Walked Bud” which was choreographed by Chicago Human Rhythm project’s Lane Alexander.
MCA Students who will be performing in the showcase will include: Coin Cada, Lilia Civettini, Deja Foster, Claire Goeldner, Phoebe Goeldner, Roland Goeldner, Hannah Graff, Natahan Graff, Viva Graff, Clara Heinrichs, Elizabeth Hinz, Kylee Indahl, Mattie Kreisel, Isabell Livingston, Isaac Meinke, Justine Meinke, Preston Meinke, Victoria Schroeder, and Seamus Schwaba.
The Minnesota Conservatory for the Arts, an affiliate program of Saint Mary’s University, a nonprofit organization offers programming in dance, music, visual art, and theatre. Classes, lessons, workshops and camps are offered for ages 18mo. To adult at the Valencia Arts Center, corner of 10th and Vila Streets, Winona. For more information about MCA’s National Tap Dance Day Showcase or other arts programming, visit MCA online, email MCA@smumn.edu, or call (507) 453-5500.