Tap was Mann's favorite dance form because of its energy and movement. "I just liked everything about it," she notes. "My feet are always going to tap. I just feel myself being up there."
She remembers taking lessons and dancing with Dwight Andrus Jr. ' yes, the real estate developer ' who's a local tap legend among dance enthusiasts. "I did tap a lot," says Andrus. "That's a fact."
Andrus' granddaughter, Ashley Andrus, remembers her grandfather teaching his 14 grandchildren how to tap dance when they were young. "He actually had one of the rooms (in his house) redone with a wooden dance floor and mirrors on the wall," she says. Andrus began dancing at the age of 3, when his mother put him in dance lessons with aspirations of seeing her son on Broadway. (He did get an offer to study in New York at the age of 13 but turned it down to stay in Lafayette.) Andrus also taught at Gertrude Leblanc's dance school and often performed at the Heymann Center and in outlying areas before going to college.
Tap City founder, producer and director Tony Waag is excited about his first visit to Lafayette ' and collaborating with local musicians, including zydeco band Lil' Nathan & the Zydeco Big-Timers. "I think everybody's totally open to that," he says. "If there's music, there's dancing. They'll probably just play and ask us to jam. We really consider ourselves musicians anyway ' we just play our feet." (For a complete list of Tap City events, see p. 24.)
In its fifth year, the annual summer Tap Festival brings together hundreds of tap dancers from around the world. This summer marks the event's first national tour, which includes nine of the best dancers from the past five festivals, along with three musicians on piano, drums and bass. It also represents three generations of tap dancing; Waag studied under tap dance trailblazer Brenda Bufalino, who will be dancing in the show.
"It is sort of a best-of and represents different facets of the festival pulled into one show," Waag says. "The biggest thing is that we represent a variety of styles, types of music and eras." From early Singin' in the Rain-inspired moves to bebop tap, softshoe, funk, Broadway, and Brazilian and German variations, Tap City clicks in a whole spectrum of styles. "It's exactly like music," Waag says. "It's an ongoing formation of things.".
The easy one-piece way to style
Comfy feet for long days
Here's your daily look at late-breaking national and international news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Wednesday, April 23, 2014:
Newsy bits for the whole fam
Wednesday's Blogs from the Bog!
Don't forget: our annual Festival International contest begins Thursday! Win. Cool. Stuff.
An effort to prohibit employers from discriminating based on sexual orientation or gender identity was shelved Tuesday for the legislative session.
Louisiana won't lessen its penalties for marijuana possession, keeping laws on the books that allow people to be jailed up to 20 years for repeat offenses of having the drug in hand.
State bar foundation bestows honor on founder and managing partner of NeunerPate
This Wednesday, April 23, marks the first full day of INNOV8 Lafayette.
National awards recognize outstanding achievement in leadership development and leadership programs
A federal court magistrate has issued a seven-page schedule of hearings, conferences and deadlines leading up to January’s trial aimed at determining how much money BP will owe in Clean Water Act fines as a result of its 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill.
“This is one of the oldest divides that exists, and that divide is about the haves and the have-nots.”
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
The state’s “greedy trial lawyers” haven’t scared this oil giant away.
Local boutique celebrates all things green
It took a few weeks for the pitfalls to emerge in the governor’s $25 billion budget, but the time of judgment has finally arrived.
With pressure continuing to build for him to resign, Congressman Vance McAllister announced plans recently to remain secluded during the Easter break, but the Swartz Republican has said he’ll be back on the Hill casting votes and attending committee meetings when the congressional recess ends April 28.
A bid to limit the use of unmanned aircraft on private property in Louisiana stalled Monday in the Louisiana Senate.
A Shreveport lawmaker said Monday he's scrapping his proposal to name the Bible as Louisiana's official state book.
Tender meat and crispy bread create a white-linen-worthy sandwich
Attorney hopes fellow lawyers will join him in urging the D.A. to step aside and allow a competent, ethical challenger to take over the scandal-ridden office.
INNOV8 Lafayette launches its weeklong festival dedicated to cultivating innovation, creativity and entrepreneurship.
Smaller Microsoft Store installations sell a wide array of Microsoft products (Windows phones, Surface tablets and Xbox consoles) but don’t include everything.
Dirk Powell and Cedric Watson will perform together during an intimate gig at Parish Ink, 310 Jefferson St., from 9-11:30 p.m. Wednesday.
See cutting-edge technologies Thursday in brief presentations/demonstrations from 3rd Dimension Media, C&C Technologies, Cimation and UL Lafayette School of Engineering.
An official with the Louisiana Department of Education was arrested on a range of charges Friday after allegedly breaking into a home and brandishing a knife.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
Get Festival ready
State Rep. Stuart Bishop says he’s concerned with the quality of Capitol Lake, but when it comes to Louisiana’s coastline, this Lafayette Republican doesn't seem to give a damn.