Artists in Residence

Our Artist in Residency Program supports professional tap dancers recognized for their unique vision and personal style. Artists receive weekly studio space to support their creative process, create new work and mobilize their on-going activities and career.

 

The ATDF is dedicated to nurturing a creative environment for artists to connect, explore and share their talent with other artists, students, ATDF faculty and the community. The ATDF encourages artists to pass on a tradition. A tradition of teaching, learning, exploring and then passing it on to the next generation.  ATDF programming is designed to connect the tap professional to our student body. Each artist contributes to the Tap Conservatory by teaching special master classes, making guest appearances in ATDF events and performances and by creating and placing new contemporary choreography on the Tap City Youth Ensemble. The ATDF steward's innovation, fosters exploration, provides support and resources and provides a forum for each artist to reach his or her full potential as a working professional in the field. To learn more about this program contact Tony Waag at: twaag@atdf.org

Chloé Arnold is an International Tap Star. Her latest hit, BEYONCE TAP SALUTE by her company Chloé's Syncopated Ladies, has gone viral, reaching over 400,000 hits in under 36 hours from the endorsed by Beyonce herself, "They Killed It". (syncopatedladies.com). As a leading lady in the Art Form of Tap, Chloé has wooed audiences in over 21 countries and 35 states. Her work can be seen on film, television, and stages worldwide. Co-Founder of DC Tap Festival and Co-Director of LA Tap Festival, Chloé's most recent highlights include a recurring role as an Onyx Girl on HBO's Boardwalk Empire, Choreographing a commercial for Canon, performing at Madison Square Garden for the opening of the NY Knicks 2013-2014 season, working with Beyonce on the 2013 Pepsi and H&M campaigns, guest performing on NBC's America's Got Talent, ABC’s Dancing With The Stars and FOX's So You Think You Can Dance, a sold-out NY run of her One Woman show My Life. My Diary. My Dance. at La MaMa in New York City, Global Fusion Concert in Dubai with 10 of the world's most accomplished musicians, and performing with Chloé's Syncopated Ladies at the star-studded “One Night Only” Homecoming Gala Concert Cabaret at the Howard Theatre in Washington, DC. Chloé is also a female entrepreneur that holds an Ivy League degree from Columbia University. She and her sister co-founded Chloé and Maud Productions and DC Tap Festival, and currently produce a travel web series, Chloé's World and co-producing a documentary TAP WORLD with Hollywood Executive Producer Dean Hargrove. For more information: www.chloearnold.com

Brenda Bufalino is a mixed genre artist; choreographer and tap dancer, a dancer who sings, tells stories, writes books, works clay into shapes that dance, and paints pictures. She has performed her one person shows Internationally and has appeared as a guest soloist at Town Hall, Carnegie Hall, and the Kennedy Center among other major venues. In February 2009, she premiered her latest show “Primordial Memories” at the Judson Church in NYC as part of Tony Waag’s “Sound Check Series.” She mentors, lectures and teaches master classes internationally and teaches many workshop series for the American Tap Dance Foundation in New York City throughout the year. As artistic director/ choreographer of The American Tap Dance Orchestra she toured America and Europe with her company, and appeared at The Joyce Theatre, and on PBS “Great Performances…..Tap Dance in America with Gregory Hines.” For many years Ms. Bufalino collaborated and toured extensively with her mentor Charles “Honi” Coles. She has received consecutive grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and is a NYFA fellow. Her critically acclaimed book “Tapping the Source…. tap dance stories, theory and practice” is published by Cod Hill Press. She has created numerous DVD’s and CD’s…. tapping, singing, teaching and telling stories, which are available from her web-site. She is the recipient of the Flobert Award, The Tapestry Award, and The Tap City Hoofers Award, all for outstanding achievement and contributions to the field of tap dance.
Visit: brendabufalino.com  Visit: Brenda's Blog  Photo by Lois Greenfield

Michelle Dorrance is one of the most sought after tap dancers of her generation. She currently performs with the Off-Broadway production STOMP and is on faculty at Broadway Dance Center. A North Carolinian by birth and a New Yorker since 1997, Michelle has been tap dancing her whole life. She was formally trained at the Ballet School of Chapel Hill under youth tap trailblazer Gene Medler. Michelle started performing at the age of 8 with Medler's company, the North Carolina Youth Tap Ensemble at the early tap festivals of the 1990's and grew with them, receiving international acclaim. An incredibly diverse dancer, Michelle has since established herself as an accomplished solo artist, teaching master classes and performing from Monaco and Moscow to Tokyo and Tel Aviv. She has been honored to work with Heather Cornell's Manhattan Tap, Savion Glover's Ti Dii, Barbara Duffy & Co., Max Pollak's Rumba Tap, Tony Waag’s Tap City on Tour, Ayodele Casel's Diary of a Tap Dancer, Mable Lee's Dancing Ladies, Harold Cromer's Opus One, Derick Grant's Imagine Tap!, Lynn Daly’s Jazz Tap Ensemble and Jason Samuels-Smith's Charlie's Angels: A tribute to Charlie Parker. Michelle's choreography has been performed throughout the country and internationally and has been featured at Jacob's Pillow with Cintia Chameki's Ritmico, at Birdland with members of the Duke Ellington Orchestra, as well as in a commercial for Toyota Taiwan. In 2007, The Brothers Timofeyevich won second place at the World Championships in Germany performing her choreography. She has been known to appear dancing on stage with underground music icons The Squirrel Nut Zippers, Bitch and Animal and Darwin Deez. Michelle holds a Bachelor of Arts from New York University's Gallatin School of Individualized Study, and is on faculty at Broadway Dance Center. She would like to thank all the Masters of the art form whom she's had the opportunity to study with for their indefatigable love and inspiration and genius. Visit: Michelle Dorrance.com Photo by Matthew Murphy

Felipe Galganni was born and raised in São Paulo, Brazil. He has worked choreographing and performing in several Musicals, TV shows, and Movies. Mentored by Heather Cornell (Manhattan Tap) Felipe moved to New York City in the summer of 2010 to further his education in Tap. Since then he has had the honor of working with Tony Waag, Lynn Schwab, Chikako Iwahori, Max Pollak (Rumba Tap), Ray Hesselink, Michelle Dorrance, Alicia Monaco and Claudia Rahardjanoto. He has performed at Lincoln Center, Symphony Space, Joseph Papp's Public Theater (Joe's Pub), The NY Summer Stage and The Cotton Club. Felipe currently performs regularly on Sundays at LAVO NYC and is on faculty at Steps on Broadway.

Derick K. Grant is a performer, choreographer, director who has an established career that spans over three decades. Under the direction of Tony Award winning director George C. Wolfe, he was an original company member and Dance Captain for Bring In ‘Da Noise, Bring In ‘Da Funk at both The Public Theater and on Broadway and starred in the role of ‘da beat for the first National Tour of Bring In ‘Da Noise, Bring In ‘Da Funk.  Mr. Grant created the critically acclaimed show Imagine Tap! and was appointed as the Co-Artistic Director of Chicago Human Rhythm Project’s Rhythm World Summer Festival.  His choreography was featured on Fox’s hit series So You Think You Can Dance and he has performed and recorded with Grammy Award winner Dan Zanes. Mr. Grant was the recipient of the Princess Grace Award for Upcoming Young Artist, The Helen Hayes Award (Washington D.C.) for Outstanding Featured Actor as well as two additional for his role in Bring In ‘Da Noise, Bring In ‘Da Funk.  Mr. Grant also received two Los Angeles Ovation Awards for choreography and for best Ensemble performance in Noise/Funk, and was most recently recognized for Best Choreography for Imagine Tap! He is currently a corporate Tap spokesperson for SoDanca and continues to transform and inspire dance communities around the world.

Visit: imaginetap.com

Kazu Kumagai was born in Sendai City, Japan. He started tap dancing at the age of 15 and came to NY at the age of 19. As he was attending the New York University at the age of 20, he also trained in the New York Institute of Tap`s "FUNK UNIVERSITY," which was the  training workshop for the big hit Broadway Musical "Bring in Da` Noise Bring in Da` Funk.  He studied with Ted Levy, Buster Brown, Gregory Hines, Barbara Duffy, and Derick K. Grant. Since then, he has been performed in many NYC downtown clubs such as the Knitting Factory, Tonic, and the Puppet Jazz Club. From 2002 to 2010, he performed for in Tony Waag’s Tap City, the New York City Tap Festival nine times, and was dubbed by the Village Voice as the "Japanese Gregory Hines." In 2006, He was selected as "25 to Watch" in Dance Magazine.  After Kaz went back to Japan in 2002, he made numerous solo appearances all over the country and collaborated with many artists and musicians, and appeared in several television commercials, such as SONY CYBERSHOT. He also performed in a  MIHARAYASUHIRO fashion show in Milan, Italy, where he succeeded in opening up a new field of the Arts. In 2008, he opened his first tap dance studio "KAZ TAP STUDIO" in Japan, and has subsequently taught throughout Japan including in his home town of Sendai City, where there was severe damage due to the 2011 earthquake and Tsunami. Kaz dedicates his passion and love for the art of Tap Dance to the great masters such as his mentor Buster Brown, Jimmy Slyde, Gregory Hines and others, as well as to his hometown Tohoku where his family and friends live. Photo by Leslie Kee

Lisa La Touche Proudly Canadian originally from Calgary, Alberta, Lisa is an internationally sought after tap dancer, teacher, choreographer and director and cast member in both the New York City and North American tour of STOMP. Career highlights also include 3 years of performing at legendary Cotton Club, faculty member of School of Jacob's Pillow, performing in the International Body Music Festival in Istanbul, working at Beijing International Dance Festival via Chicago Human Rhythm Project as a dancer, choreographer and American media spokesperson, and also Co-Director and host of C.H.R.P.'s “Spotlight on Canada” where she proudly stood as a leader in representing Canadian’s talent and legacy in concert as part of the Rhythm World dance festival. After earlier years of teaching, performing, producing and directing in her hometown in Canada, she established root in the American community by way of Chicago, where she worked extensively with renowned organizations M.A.D.D. Rhythms and the Chicago Human Rhythm Project. Her career then transitioned to New York in 2008 and continued to grow with such opportunities as "A.C.G.I." and "Charlie's Angels" with Emmy Award winning dancer/choreographer Jason Samuels Smith, working with Bessie Award winner Dormeshia Sumbry-Edwards at the Cotton Club and in her Michael Jackson tribute production “Blood on the dance floor" and working consistently with Max Pollak and his company Rumba Tap. She's also danced in touring production of “Sophisticated Ladies” honoring the music of Duke Ellington, worked extensively with “Barbara Duffy and Co.”, Ayodele Casel and Sarah Savelli’s “Tap n2 Peace” and also The Cab Calloway Foundation Inc. Lisa has been featured in numerous international dance festivals in Brazil, China, Germany, Turkey, UK, Switzerland, Canada and across the US. She has appeared on faculty at Steps on Broadway and the American Tap Dance Foundation and still works with her own group "Tap Phonics”. She currently is based in New York City and proudly works worldwide!

Michela Marino-Lerman first appeared on Sesame Street at the age of 5. In February 2002 she was showcased on the cover of Dance Teacher magazine with Gregory Hines. In 2005, she was named by Dance Spirit magazine as one of the 20 hottest tap dancers under 20 and in 2008, Dancemagazine named her as the only female tap dancer in its “25 to Watch in 2008.” Michela has appeared in both the Tap Extravaganza and Tap City numerous times over the past ten years. She won first prize in the Harlem Jazz Dance Festival’s, “Hoofer’s Challenge” in both 2002 and 2003. In 2002, Michela performed with Jennifer Holliday on Broadway in Nothing Like A Dame and also in 21 Belowat Town Hall. In 2003, she was inducted into the famed Copasetics as their first and only female lifetime honorary member. In 2004-2006, Michela toured Spain and Japan with Rafael Amargo’s Enramblao. In the fall of 2005, her choreography was featured in the tap section of the opening number for the Bermuda Music Festival with UDP, starring Al Green, Angie Stone, and Patti LaBelle. At the age of 19, she was commissioned by Dixon Place to create and direct her own show, entitled AM+bu$h+ED. 2007 saw Michela tour Europe for 3 months as a lead dancer in the hit show Magic of the Dance and also appear in Sarah Savelli and Ayodele Casel’s Tappy Holidays. In 2008-2009, she was featured in the show hit “Wonderland,” an all tap show set to Stevie Wonder’s music and also in Chris Scott’s show W-L-U-V. In 2008 she appeared on CBS’s Secret Talents of the Stars with Grammy award singer Mya, performing the choreography of Emmy award winner Jason Samuels Smith. Since 2007, Michela has been a featured performer at NYC’s hottest nightclub, The Box. She recently danced with the Roy Hargrove at the Jazz Gallery and the Village Vanguard. She has also been commissioned by the American Tap Dance Foundation and HarlemStage to show her new work entitled Tapsploitation. Recently she has been co-creator in forming the tap dance company The Tap Messengers who have performed at the CareFusion Jazz Festival with Talib Kweli and Nicholas Payton in the Revive Da Live Big Band, Joe’s Pub, and HarlemStage opening for Marcus Strickland. Michela is grateful for the mentoring and guidance given to her by Buster Brown, Gregory Hines, and Leroy Myers. She has also studied with Jason Samuels Smith, Henry LeTang, Baakari Wilder, Ayodele Casel, Derek Grant, Dianne Walker, and many other gifted teachers. She has taught in numerous schools, studios, programs, and festivals throughout the world. As a performer, teacher, director, and choreographer Michela is dedicated to spreading the art of tap around the world.

Max Pollak, named one of the "25 to Watch in 2007" by Dance Magazine, was inspired by the virtuosic footwork displayed by many of the greats in American film, and most importantly, jazz music. A native of Austria, he has been tapping since the age of 11, and playing drums and percussion since the age of 14. At age 17 Max was first exposed to the African American style of rhythm tap when seventy-one-year-old Carnell Lyons became his first mentor. Lyons, a Kansas City-born childhood friend of Charlie Parker, had toured the world successfully as a member of the vaudeville acrobatic tap act "Jesse, James and Carnell". Settling in West Berlin in the 1960s, Lyons became the pioneer of rhythm tap pedagogy in Europe. While completing his theater degree at the Theater-an-der-Wien Musical Theater School in Vienna, from 1988-1990, Pollak became an accomplished professional drummer and tap improviser. After working in several large musical theater productions in Germany and Austria, including one under the direction of Broadway choreographer Michael Shawn, he moved to New York City at the invitation of Heather Cornell, artistic director of the Bebop tap quartet Manhattan Tap. His tenure with the company lasted until 1997. During the early 1990s, the most important breeding ground for emerging tap talent was the weekly tap jam session hosted by tap legends Dr. Jimmy Slyde, Dr. Buster Brown, Chuck Green, and Lon Chaney at the New York City jazz club La Cave. Pollak was a regular, taken under the wing of the masters. For three years, he also co-hosted a weekly tap jam session at the East Village club Deanna's. Pollak also furthered his musical studies in jazz at New York's prestigious New School, graduating in May 1995. It was Latin percussion master Bobby Sanabria, though, who introduced Pollak to the earth shattering power and spiritual depth of Afro-Cuban music. Pollak soon began incorporating elements of Afro-Cuban jazz and folkloric music in his performances, developing the concept he calls "RumbaTap", a melding of Afro-Cuban music and dance, American jazz, body percussion, and tap dance. One of Pollak's crowning achievements was to receive a grant from Arts International in 2001 to help establish Cuba's first tap festival in Havana. Today Pollak is recognized worldwide as the creator of "RumbaTap." So respected is Pollak for this concept that his performances, teaching schedule, university lectures, and residencies take him throughout the US, Europe, Asia, Central and South America. Pollak has published articles on tap dance in several international publications and is the 2008 recipient of the New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship in Choreography.

Visit: Rhumba Tap

Photo by Lois Greenfield

Lynn Schwab is a member of Barbara Duffy and Company, RumbaTap, and The Tap Collective, has performed at such notable New York venues as The Duke on 42nd Street, Lincoln Center Out-of-Doors, Town Hall, Off Broadway’s La MAMA, World Festival 2000, The International Street Performers Festival, The River to River Festival, Central Park’s SummerStage, Joe’s Pub, Studio 54, The Joyce and The Joyce SoHo Theatres. She has performed at Jacob’s Pillow and as a guest artist with Billy Siegenfeld and Jeannie Hill’s Jump Rhythm Jazz Project. With members of The Tap Collective, she choreographed and performed the Morton Gould Tap Dance Concerto with the Brooklyn Symphony Orchestra. She has performed with The Chamber Orchestra Kremlin, and at festivals in the U.S., Germany, Spain, France, Holland, and Estonia. She continues to tour the U.S. with Tap City on Tour and in addition to her regular classes at Steps on Broadway in New York City, teaches and performs at festivals and workshops in the U.S., Europe and Japan.

Jason Samuels Smith has emerged as a multi-talented leader in the Art form of Tap. He won both an Emmy and American Choreography Award for "Outstanding Choreography" for the Opening number of the 2003 Jerry Lewis/MDA Telethon in a tribute to the late Gregory Hines. Mr. Samuels-Smith most recently received the Gregory Hines Humanitarian in addition to past honors including a Certificate of Appreciation by the City of Los Angeles for creating the First Annual Los Angeles Tap Festival in 2003; a Proclamation declaring April 23rd "Jason Samuels Day" from the City of Shreveport, Louisiana; the "Ivy of Education" from Brainerd Institute; the "President Kenny Award" from Stony Brook; an Alpert/McDowell Residency Award; and an Arts International Grant among others. Mr. Samuels Smith most recently appeared as a special guest on Fox's hit series "So You Think You Can Dance" and is currently working as a choreographer for a new reality show scheduled to debut this coming season. Films include co-starring in Dean Hargrove's "Tap Heat", a dynamic award-winning short film touring film festivals worldwide (available on DVD); Outkast's feature film "Idlewild"; and Debbie Allen's AMC television series "Cool Women" to name a few. Performances include Sammy (a tribute to the life of Sammy Davis jr.), and in a leading role of the star-studded production of Soul Possessed; the Tony Award winning Broadway cast of Bring in Da'Noise, Bring in Da'Funk in principal and lead roles; starring in the critically acclaimed production of Imagine Tap!. Mr. Samuels Smith continues to tour the US and beyond with India Jazz Suites, a dynamic collaboration with Kathak Master Pandit Chitresh Das, his own tap company A.C.G.I (Anybody Can Get It), JaJa Productions Band featuring jazz-influenced hip hop music, and Charlie's Angels: A Tribute to Charlie Parker which features some of the best women performers today. Photo by: Debi Field

Cartier Williams is a Hoofer, Choreographer, Filmmaker and Performer who hails from Washington, D.C., and began his tap dancing career at the age of four. Cartier learned his first tap steps from his grandmother Audrey Williams. At the age of six Cartier performed a piece choreographed by Mýa Cartier won Apollo Kids at The prestigious Apollo Theater Distinguished as one of The Apollo Theater's youngest "Apollo Legends". Later that year Cartier was invited to the Kennedy Center Honors along side Robert Downey Jr.  Mr. Williams  studied at The Washington School of Ballet under the tutelage of Mary Day. When he was 10 years old, Cartier Co-Starred with Tap Legends Buster Brown, Jimmy Slyde and Dianne Walker in the International tour of FOOTNOTES. Cartier consider it a blessing to have danced and shared the stage with tap pioneers and masters Peg Leg Bates, The Nicholas Brothers, and Gregory Hines. He has appeared on THE OPRAH WINFREY SHOW, THE TONIGHT SHOW, GOOD MORNING AMERICA, and CNN. He has performed for 2 U.S. Presidents, and in 1998 Co-Starred in the PBS Special: In Performance at The White House with President Clinton. He toured the U.S. and Japan in the Tony Award Winning BRING IN 'da NOISE, BRING IN 'da FUNK, Co-starring with Savion Glover.He has performed at The Joyce Theatre, New York City Center as well as the L.A Kodak Theatre where he performed The AFI Awards: A Tribute to Tom Hanks. Other appearances include a performance at Usher's birthday bash in New York City performances for the FCC, The CIA, The State Department and Department of Justice. Now 20, Cartier is currently performing his latest production A BEAUTIFUL CHAOS  which is slated to tour in 2011 created by Cartier and two New York Film Academy friends Matt Denoma and Max Schiano. He is collaborating with Harold Cromer on a new work which will premiere in Spring 2011.  He is a student of The New York Film Academy. As a Filmmaker Cartier has written, directed and produced: Phone Bait, The Violinist, and My Love Awaits. He's appeared in Spike Lee's Film Bamboozled. Cartier also performed at The Opening of the Cannes Film Festival for Moulin Rouge. He released his first Instructional DVD:  CARTIER WILLIAMS' HOOFING WITH THE BASICS in March 2010.  

Nicholas Young began his professional dance carrier with Tapestry Dance Company, under the direction of Acia Gray, and Deirdre Strand. Moving to principle dancer, resident choreographer he spent more than 10 years with the company. Moving to New York, he began working with local Tap dancers and musicians, on various projects. Including Manhattan Tap, Hoofin to Hittin, Beat the Donkey, and Rumba Tap. Nicholas joined the Off Off Broadway production of STOMP in 2002 and is currently a performer and the rehearsal director for the American tour. Nicholas has taught master classes for the Soul to Sole, Third Coast Rhythm, and the Saint Louis Tap Festivals, among others. He would like to thank His mother for constant support and inspiration through art.

 

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