Published on February 18th 2021 by Hillary-Marie
Here’s the thing…
My first tap teacher didn't really teach me how to tap dance.
They didn’t give me a strong technical foundation, understanding of music theory, appreciation of history, comfort with improvisation, none of that.
I found all of that through other teachers over the years.
But what my first tap teacher taught me, is the most valuable lesson I could have learned.
She didn’t teach me how to tap dance, but she taught me how to LOVE tap dance.
And that was all I needed to keep moving forward in this journey.
I’ve had so many mentors along the way who have given me life advice, career advice, dance advice, performance advice. The type of advice that makes you say “aha!” and grow exponentially, leaps and bounds.
But I would have never even crossed paths with those people, if that initial teacher hadn’t taught me how to love tap dance.
So out of curiosity, I asked the iTapOnline Community…
What's the biggest lesson your tap teacher taught you? The one you're MOST grateful for?
And here’s what they said…
“Not necessarily from a tap teacher, but the advice to not just do the steps but to perform the dance resonated with me.” ~ Jeanette W.
“Keep working- you’ll get it.” ~ Jill Bitner Copenhaver
“There are so many "tap techniques" as many dancers, and the fact your body is "x-type" doesn't mean you cannot do certain step "properly", you just have to find your own way to execute it. It was quite hard to understand for me after years of dancing ballet, where ex. lack of turnout means you're "worse" than someone else and where you have to do everything in exact the same way. But now I love the idea, it allowed me to work in my own pace, with much less pressure “ ~ Emilia W.
“Confidence! She saw my potential, believed in me, and challenged me. She also put me in positions of leadership, within my classes, that I really believe helped me evolve into the teacher I am today” ~ Amber C.
“Find the pulse of the music, listen to the colour and texture of your sounds and then put them all together.” ~ Vivian B.
“Sometimes more important than the SOUNDS is the SILENCE” ~ Leah D.
“Take it seriously, but take the fun seriously too!” ~ Naomi C.
“the importance of hard work” ~ Jill A.
“Keep learning. We went from wearing heels and doing lindys and irishes (not hating on those steps because I love them) to wearing flats and doing paddles and more and more intricate steps, all because she kept learning.” ~ Beth
“Oh "Relax" for sure... Still hasn't fully sinked in but I'm working on it!” ~ Veronica M.
“Do what you know, less is more” - Jason Samuels Smith ~ Carolina C.
“Listen” ~ Jenefer M.
“He DRILLED technique. I’m so grateful for a great base of technique to be able to build on. I now drill technique with my students as well. Quality over quantity is my motto. To not build bad muscle memory.” ~ Erin M.
“Ethel Bruneau taught me a whole lot that I’ll be wrestling with for a long time. The one that I’m most grateful for is the one that feeds me daily. She taught me her love of tap.” ~ Travis K.
“Dance with intention” ~ Stephanie V.
“Eliminate the word ‘can’t’ from your vocabulary” ~ Collins E.
“ALWAYS study. Always learn. Watch and listen to the teachers, how they teach.” ~ Liz S.
“Willie Covin taught me that it doesn’t matter if there are 3 people or 300 people in the audience, you give them 100% of your performance” ~ Ken B.
If you didn't have a chance to share with me yet… go ahead and share in the iTapOnline Community Facebook Group and let me know,.. What's the biggest lesson your tap teacher taught you? The one you're MOST grateful for?