Rhythm Tap Is Music

Rhythm Tap Is Music:

Tap Teacher Training and Certificate (July 14-19, 2020)

Our newest Upper Level Training is open to all participants who completed Level 1. (ATDF Upper Level Teacher Trainings are not sequential and may be attended in any order). The “Rhythm Tap Is Music” Training addresses teaching all students, from Advanced Beginner through Intermediate to Advanced, with a special focus on the music and composition skills you need to create strong exercises and exciting choreographies for your dancers. Latin Jazz, Brazilian Bossa Nova, Bebop, and Funk provide the basis for solid exercises and exciting dances. Bufalino Repertory, guided composition assignments, and improvisation provide deeper exploration of tap artistry and expert rhythm tap teaching skills.


This Training takes place in two sessions:


Session 1

Tuesday, July 14 - Sunday, July 19, 2020

6-day training intensive at the American Tap Dance Center, NYC

* Bufalino repertory 
* jazz music concepts
* live music & percussion
* tap composition
* improvisation
* rhythm tap pedagogy
* tap artistry on video
* informal showing
* discussions and info sharing


Session 2

Fall 2020 – Spring 2021:
Independent work, off-site
Trainees are assigned a faculty mentor and will complete independent work and assignments in their home communities



Trainees who successfully complete assignments will receive a Certificate awarded by the ATDF.

Session 1 - July Intensive Overview (subject to change)

The July intensive begins on Tuesday with a 10:00 AM orientation meeting, followed by a full day of classes. The schedule from Tuesday to Saturday will be 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM, on Sunday, 10:00 AM – 3:00 PM. The intensive week concludes on the last Sunday with an information meeting on Session 2 assignments, followed by the informal showing. 

Core Faculty: Brenda Bufalino, Susan Hebach, Lisa La Touche and Margaret Morrison.
Additional faculty may include Barbara Duffy, Thelma Goldberg, Toni Noblett and guest artists TBA. Daily schedule will be provided in July.

July Level 3 Course Descriptions (subject to change):

Bufalino Repertory: Participants will learn a full Bufalino work and sections of several others, including:
* "The Military," Brenda Bufalino's post-modern take on a classic tap dance style, based in even (unswung) rhythms and precision footwork, with
iconic Bufalino compositional elements of full-body moves and a 3-part counterpoint. Danced to "Nostalgia in Times Square" by Charles Mingus.
*  Bebop chorus to a Thelonius Monk tune in a fast swing groove.
* "Blue Bossa," a short, flowing tap dance to the Brazilian-influenced jazz standard

This repertory provides a rich trove of resources for tap teachers. The works are a doorway into understanding a range of jazz music styles and
structures. The dances help teachers to develop their own tap abilities and are exciting works to bring to upper level students. In composition
sessions, they provide a jumping-off point for putting together dances for all levels. And they're a source of phrases, figures, and rhythmic ideas
that can be slowed down or simplified for advanced beginner kids and adults.

Music Concepts & Composition: Brazilian Bossa Nova, Latin Jazz, Bebop, and Post-Bop Blues will be the foundational styles to explore music
concepts, rhythmic grooves, and composition skills. Assignments will address creating exercises and dances for Advanced Beginning to Advanced level
students, composing different types of 8 and 16 bar phrases (from time steps to more complicated phrasing), working in different feels, like single time
and double time, working to different styles of music, creating entire student dances that work coherently with the music.

Improvisation sessions cover multiple approaches to creative rhythm making to help develop musical understanding solid timing, foster creativity and
confidence. Improv exercises and games can be a fun way to accommodate mixed level classes and reinforce technique. Improv in performance can be
incorporated into choreographed dances and help students develop personal expression and performance chops.

Pedagogy: strategies for rhythm tap teaching to Advanced Beginner to Advanced level students (children, teens & adults).

Master Classes with Brenda Bufalino: Ms. Bufalino coaches Trainees on body style and musicality in her repertory, and addresses her approach to
composition. With live piano accompaniment.

Tap History & Artistry on Video: with a focus on rhythm tap composition styles.

Discussions & info meetings

Informal Showing: At the end of the week, an informal for all Trainees to perform for each other.

Session 2 Overview

Fall - Spring

In Session 2, trainees will be assigned a faculty mentor and will return to their home communities to complete independent work. During these months, trainees will develop their skills as tap teachers by working every week with their own student groups, teaching concepts and repertory, developing exercises, and choreographing sections of tap dances to several different types of music


By the end of Session 2, trainees will demonstrate through written documentation and video:

• that they are able to dance repertory accurately

• that they have taught a minimum 40 hours, working with students on Curriculum concepts

• that they have completed composition assignments based on concepts taught

• that they are able to incorporate key aspects of the Curriculum into their teaching, including:

      - tap technique that builds towards the repertory

      - body use and dance style that is gleaned from the repertory

      - jazz music concepts

      - tap history

Other requirements include:

• communicating by email, once a month, with their mentor on their progress

• staying in regular communication with fellow Tap Teacher Trainees for support and information sharing

The months of Session 2 are an essential time for each trainee to develop her/his skills as a rhythm tap teacher.


Assignments and Certificate

During Session 2, trainees will digitally submit written and video recorded assignments to mentors. Trainees who successfully complete work will be awarded a Certificate from the American Tap Dance Foundation. The Certificate will reflect the number of Trainings attended: participants who complete their 2nd Training will receive a “Level 2 Certificate,” while participants who are completing their 3rd or 4th Training will receive a “Level 3” or “Level 4 Certificate.”

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