Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Tap Dance Songs

Tap dancing requires rhythmic movements and taps. Songs with syncopated rhythms or just stead rhythms, or songs that are relatively slow are good songs for beginning tap dancers to learn how to tap dance.

Tap dancing is a style of dance where the dancer almost exclusively utilizes his or her feet to tell their musical story. Because the upper part of the dancers body does not move much, the rhythmic patterns emulating from the metal plates on the dancers shoes draws the attention. The sound that tap shoes makes is similar to that made by percussionists.

For those who have watched many dance recitals, famous tap dancers and even movie stars who have tapped danced on stage, some of the popular tap dance songs you’re sure to have heard are:
  • Tea For Two by Ella Fitzgerald & Count Basie
  • Yes Sir, That’s My Baby by Frank Sinatra
  • By Bye Blackbird – John Coltrane & Miles Davis
  • It Don’t Mean a Thing if it Ain’t Got that Swing by Duke Ellington
  • Zoot Suit Riot – Cherry PoppinDaddys

Selecting a tap dance song for your recital or talent show performance is easy to do. There are literally hundreds of songs that can be used for tap dancing. Even songs with rapid beats can be tapped to. The trick is to not necessarily tap on every rapid beat, but to tap on off points or in a rhythm that works between the beats of the song.

Tap dancing requires more than dancing to the music. As a tap dancer, you are actually making music. Keeping in time with the music, no matter what tap dance song you select, can make or break your performance. It is more important to not get carried away with your own tapping sounds and to actually listen to the music and move within time to the beat. The key to mesmerizing your audience is to have your tap sounds compliment the rhythm of the music, not compete with it!

A Tip for Tap Dancers

Making tap dancing look easy is actually extremely difficult! But, there’s one tap dancing secret that can help beginners and professional alike, if they just remember this one thing. Relax your ankles! Your legs are what should be doing all the work. Having control of your hips, thighs, and calves and limiting the movement from your ankles will make your movements appear effortless. Allow your legs to do all of the work and let your feet just follow along! Happy Tapping!!

About Wagner Dance and Music

Since 1989, Wagner Dance and Music, a performing arts school, has been teaching East Valley students. Our 3600 square foot Gilbert facility is conveniently located on the southeast corner of Gilbert and Guadalupe in the Big Lots plaza. We offer classes for ages two to adult in Ballet, Jazz, Tap, Hip-Hop, Lyrical, Tumbling, Cheer, Musical Theater and Voice as well as adult classes. For more information about Wagner Dance and Music or to sign up for a class, visit http://wagnerdancearts.com or call 480-892-7179.

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