Tap presented by The Academy of Modern Danse featured performances by international tap dancer Pascal Hulin and the Academy's students

It is an evening of dance, song and (loud) music at Kamarajar Arangam. The event is Tap, featuring international Tap dancer Pascal Hulin and performances by students of The Academy of Modern Danse. But, it's actually like a school cultural programme, only the cultural has more audience and less empty chairs. The few seats that are occupied here primarily consist of enthusiastic parents whose children are about to perform.

The evening starts off with ‘Drums' Murali, Divakar Subramaniam, Sai Narasimhan and B. Sivaramakrishna Rao playing instrumental music. And then, the stage is taken over by a brigade of three-footers in frilly pink outfits. The stage lights are off, and as the smoke machine coughs up, the little ones excitedly giggle and jump about in the smoke but quickly get back to position as the lights come on. They perform a ballet, daintily twirling around on their toes, and even though their hands flay about in different directions, they look rather cute doing their moves.

Young and the older

When they finish, they scuttle off the stage laughing, making way for older students, who do the salsa to perfection. More ballet and hip-hop follow before the showstopper of the evening Pascal Hulin makes his appearance. We expect to see him in bright tap dance costume as depicted in the invite, but instead he turns up in a boring black shirt and a pair of jeans. He claps and taps about with his shoes going clickety click. The evening is a fine blend of East and West with even Bharatanatyam dancer Zakir Hussain making a special appearance.

The two-hour-long event ends with Pascal performing to the strains of the sitar, flute, kanjira and drums played by aforementioned musicians.

Most in the audience missed a few of Pascal's moves, thanks to arc lights that kept flashing into our eyes, leaving us nigh blind.

Before the compere could sign off and formally announce the end of the programme, people had already started trickling out of the auditorium.

And, there wasn't much reaction from the remaining seated audience either — which made somebody backstage unknowingly announce into a switched on microphone, “moment of awkward silence”. That managed to bring out a few laughs. But, over all, Tap did little to set our foot tapping.


Priyadarshini PaitandyJune 28, 2012