Saturday, October 17, 2015

Tap Step Right. Tap Step Left.

On Monday I went to an audition for Nice Work if You Can Get it

I owed it to my fans.

You see, it's been a while since I last appeared on the Town Theatre stage, playing the role of Mi Ho, the sexy prostitute who upstaged all the other Hos in Miss Saigon.  

Although the part I was auditioning for in Nice Work did not require dancing, I brought along my tap shoes.  I wanted the director to recognize my triple threat-ness.

After the vocal auditions, the director (let's call her "Shannon") called us up to the stage for some choreography.  I enthusiastically grabbed my tap shoes and joined the others on stage.

At this point, I'd like to provide you with a demographic profile of the other auditioners.  

(I'm a nerd.  Give me a break.)

Eighty-three percent were female and the median age was 21.5 years.  Every last one was stinkin' adorable and they all had perfect teeth.

And posture.

Shannon joined us on stage and began to teach the routine.

Now, I took 2 years of adult tap several years back.  And we learned routines like this: Shuffle step right.  Shuffle step left.  Shuffle step right.  Shuffle step left.  After a few weeks we advanced to shuffle hop step.

We actually performed in a recital at the Koger Center.  We were the only adults performing in a showcase with approximately 87 different dance numbers performed by thousands of children. 

All of whom were more advanced than we were.

For weeks after that recital I would be stopped at work by people asking, "Did I see you...?"  It was so embarrassing disruptive I had to wear a disguise.

I digress.

Back to the choreography.  Shannon said, "Everybody ready?"

"You bet!" I said enthusiastically.

"A-one-two-three double shuffle, leap - hop shuffle, flap, heel click, pullback pank right one-two double toe punch.  Got it?"

I looked around.  Hovering in the shadows upstage, not unlike flashers in a dark alley, were the non-tappers.  I casually took a few steps in their direction.

Shannon looked at us and said, "Here's the non-tap version for those of you not tapping.  A-one-two-three double shuffle, leap - hop shuffle, flap, jump, pullback pank right one-two double toe punch.  Got it?"

"Sure!" I said as I started my shuffle step right.  Shuffle step left.  Hop. 

Those damn tappers were tapping so loudly I couldn't concentrate!!!

Then I had an idea. 

If I could just make my tap shoes tap IN TIME... I might be able to fool Shannon.  Because I've got amazing rhythm (for a middle aged white woman).  It would be just like playing drums!

Then I realized that I wasn't wearing my tap shoes.  I had accidentally brought my character shoes that look exactly like tap shoes without the taps.  

OMG!  How could I play tap drums without my tap shoes?

Shannon must have read my mind.  She announced that if you're smiling really big, the audience will not even notice your feet.

She then split us into groups of 4 to perform.  And I put the on biggest, goofy-ass grin I could muster and started tapping like I knew what the hell I was doing.  

We ended the routine by throwing our arms up in the air.

(My ending was so good I need to see a Chiropractor.)

As I made my way off the stage I decided to really impress Shannon.  So I did a little pull back pank right and landed in the splits.  

I didn't really.  

There was no need to upstage all those twenty-somethings.