It’s not often audiences encounter a living legend, but on Monday, March 3, Madisonians will have the opportunity to see Brenda Bufalino, one of the world’s leading performers of a uniquely American art form – tap dance.
She will share her artistic insights and one-of-a-kind rhythms in a “TAP DANCE… Made in America: The Rhythm and History of America’s Own Indigenous Art Form,” a lecture demonstration. Madison’s own jazz pianist Dave Stoler plays for Bufalino as she shows and tells audiences about the styles, periods, performance, presentation and creation of American jazz tap dance. The event is free and open to the public.
It’s all thanks to a collaboration between TAPIT/new works Ensemble Theater, the Wisconsin Union Directorate, the University of Wisconsin Center for Humanities, Edgewood College and the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, working together to bring this remarkable artist, performer and educator to Wisconsin.
Recognized as a leading figure in tap dance for decades – the National Endowment for the Arts dubbed two of her pieces “American Masterpieces” – Ms. Bufalino performs, lectures and teaches internationally.
A pioneer in the resurgence of jazz tap dance in the 70s, she went on to become an innovator in the form, receiving multiple awards, recording CDs and DVDs, publishing and creating tap festivals. She toured extensively as artistic director of the American Tap Dance Orchestra, and as a guest soloist, appearing at Carnegie Hall, Avery Fisher Hall, the Apollo Theater, Brooklyn Academy of Music, the Smithsonian, the Kennedy Center and other prestigious venues. She performed with legendary tap dancers Charles “Honi” Coles, Gregory Hines and the Nicholas Brothers, as well as noted theater artist, Bill Irwin. Ms. Bufalino sold out seasons at the Joyce Theater and brought jazz tap dance to Eastern Europe through a State Department tour.
This project is supported in part by TAPIT/new works Ensemble Theater, the Wisconsin Union Directorate Performing Arts Committee, the University of Wisconsin Center for Humanities and the Edgewood College Educational Programming Board; the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, COFAC, Great Artists, Great Speakers Series.