Get Ready for National Tap Dance Day!
Ahh Memorial Day Weekend is just three weeks away. We can almost smell the budding flowers, the fresh-cut grass, the charcoal grill…It’s the first real taste of summer freedom.
But what could make this three-day weekend even better? Um, National Tap Dance Day, of course!
Bill “Bojangles” Robinson teaches Shirley Temple the stair dance in The Little Colonel (1935)
The holiday falls on May 25 each year, in honor of tap legend Bill “Bojangles” Robinson’s birthday. President George H.W. Bush signed NTDD into law back in 1989, making this year its 25th anniversary…so naturally, it has to be extra special.
While there will be celebrations throughout the US, the American Tap Dance Foundation (ATDF) is setting up shop in NYC with Tap Attack, an outdoor event (free to the public) featuring tap students from ages 5 to 75. Things to look forward to: free lessons in how to do the Shim Sham, appearances by big-time names in the tap world (Chloé Arnold and Jason Samuels Smith, to name a couple), and performances by the talented young hoofers of ATDF’s own Tap City Youth Ensemble. (Click here for more info on all the tap-tastic events scheduled.)
So if you’re in or around NYC, mark your calendars for this Memorial Day Weekend, and be sure to make your way over to Pier 45 of the Hudson River Park on Sunday afternoon. In the meantime, here’s a video of Bill “Bojangles” Robinson hoofin’ it up with Shirley Temple in The Little Colonel: