Hoofer: noun. Slang. A professional dancer, especially a tap dancer. (Dictionary.com)
When I did my Fosse imitation a few weeks back, Karina, one of our commenters, suggested that I try to do a Gene Kelly imitation. I’ve tap danced before, I thought. No big deal. Many of you are familiar with the musical Singin’ in the Rain and have seen the brilliant dancing that Gene Kelly is capable of. I looked back at that number as well as “Moses Supposes” (Singin’ in the Rain) and “Let Me Call You Sweetheart” (Thousands Cheer). Like last time, I took some notes on Kelly’s style, which was a very ballet based tap with emphasis on an upright torso with curved arms. He also seemed to favor pirouettes and pinwheel-style arms. I choreographed this imitation to “The Boogie Bumper,” by Big Bad Voodoo Daddy.
I was able to borrow tap shoes from a friend, but you can “tap” with just a pair of boots. Most people have a type of shoe in their closet that have some sort of heel on them, and those work perfectly. (Think riding boots.)
I wasn’t exactly comfortable with this art burst, since I’m not a hoofer and especially because taps are very unforgiving. (The sound gives away every mistake you make, as you will notice in the video.) However, that’s the beauty of these challenges; you don’t have to feel comfortable. So here’s my two cents of advice:
1. Tap dancing is harder than it looks.
2. Try it anyway.
Have fun. It’s always cool to try something new. 🙂