Thursday October 19th 2017

“Liason” Reviewed by Carol Moore

Liaison-ChiTapHighly Recommended **** Although I saw Chicago Tap Company’s incredibly creative “Time Steps”, a story told in dance, last year, I didn’t know much about the company.  Since I was fascinated by their style of tap dance, I decided then that I’d definitely go to see them dance again.  When I got an invitation to see CTT’s “Liaison”, an international exploration of tap dance, I was ready to go!  Ab Fab production!  4 Spotlights

In “Liaison”, dancers from Chicago Tap Company, Tap Olé (Barcelona, Spain) and Tapage (Toulouse, France), combine their talents into a unique program of dance like opening number, “Wipe Your Feet”, choreographed by Guillem Alonso (Tap Olé), all three companies dance, occasionally clapping and chanting “Barcelona and Chicago, Barcelona and Toulouse”.

“Liaison”, which was only performed once in Chicago, was practically a once-in-a-lifetime experience for the lucky audience at the Athenaeum.  If you’re in a traveling mood, “Liaison” will actually be performed twice more, in Toulouse (France) and at the largest outdoor arts festival in Europe, La Merce in Barcelona (Spain), in September.

By the way, this is not the tap you’ll see/hear in a Broadway musical like “42nd Street”.  In fact, what you’ll hear will sound a lot like “Riverdance”.  Another similarity, the shoes they wear are a lot like the shoes Irish dancers wear, but without the reinforced toes.Liaison-Red

The three companies dance together and separately.  Some highlights:

  • “Coles and Atkins Soft Shoe”, in which four dancers from the three companies, Guillem Alonso and Roser Font from Tap Olé; Valérie Lussac from Tapage; and Mark Yonally, from CTT do a soft shoe.
  • “Candilejas”, choreographed and danced by Guillem Alonso from Tap Olé.
  • “Me, Myself and Moi, choreographed by Valérie Lussac to music by Britney Spears, with the Tapage dancers.
  • The Spanish-flavored “Bulerias”, choreographed by Guillem Alonso, who dances with partner Roser Font.
  • “Cages” choreographed by Valérie Lussac to music by Peter Gabriel, and danced by the three artistic directors, Alonso, Lussac and Yonally.
  • The moody “Moonlight” choreographed by Mark Yonally to music by Beethoven and Benny Goodman, and danced by Kirsten Uttich, Jennifer Pfaff Yonally and Mark Yonally.
  • The colorful finale “Somebody to Love” choreographed by Mark Yonally to music by Queen featuring the dancers from all three companies.

Liaison-womenChicago Tap Company dancers are Kirsten Uttich, Jennifer Pfaff Yonally, Mark Yonally: Touring Apprentices; Aimee Chase, Isaac Stauffer, Sarah Owens: Apprentice; Sara Anderson.  The Tapage dancers are Kristel Bernard, Laurence Cau, David Duchein, Romain Dureuth, Valérie Lussac, Rafy Oved and Isabelle Rousseaux.  From Tap Olé, dancers Guillem Alonso and Roser Font with Musician, Mario Mas.

“Liaison” musicians are Leslie Beukelman, Paul Bedal, Jon Deitemyer, Tayiib Olashade Dauda, Krut Schweitz and Elizabeth Sikes.

Next up for Chicago Tap Company: “Changes”: A Science Fiction Tap Opera to the Music of David Bowie

June 13th through July 16th at Stage 773, 1225 W. Belmont, Chicago.

If you love tap- you will enjoy watching these “tapsters”Liaison-finale

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