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CHRP combines tap, step at show

November 19, 2009 3:17:27 PM PST
Tap dancing takes center stage at Chicago's Harris Theater through the weekend. The performance by Chicago Human Rhythm Project (CHRP)'s ensemble, Bam, runs Thursday, Friday and Saturday. The group is in its 20th anniversary of promoting tap dance as an American art form.

"Our mission is to use rhythm as a way to bring people together across community lines all different lines," said Lane Alexander, Chicago Human Rhythm Project, founder/director.

The performance features Step Afrika, a DC-based company that celebrates African-American art of stepping.

The opening act for Step Africa will be the children from Alphonsus Academy of Creative Arts.

"This is really fun because I get to perform in front of a lot of people," said Kole Deighan, Alphonsus Academy.

BAM Ensemble teaches the children how to incorporate stepping with tap.

CHRP dancers teach children in after school programs throughout Chicago. One program is at Paul Revere Elementary School, where the students gain an appreciation for tapping.

"Learning a dance move is like learning how to solve a math problem," said Principal Veronica Thompson, Revere Elementary

"Music and math are linked in the brain," said Alexander.

CHRP also provides over $250.000 in scholarships to teens to study tap each year.


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