Anna Haas 16 ~ Gene Pflug Tap Scholarship
I will be a senior at Plainview High School in Ardmore, Oklahoma. I have been dancing since the age of 3 and have been in the Shannon Crites School of Dance Competitive Company for the past 10 years studying ballet, jazz, contemporary, hip-hop, and of course, tap. I am currently a member of The Drawbacks Youth Tap Ensemble which has provided me an opportunity to perform the choreography of Katelyn Harris, Keira Leverton, Bill “Bojangles” Robinson, Derick Grant, and Buster Cooper. I have attended the Legacy Tap Project, giving me an unforgettable experience of working with Josh Hilberman and the ensemble greats, Barbara Phillips and Gene Medler, and Tap Into the Network, working with the energetic group of Gregg Russell, Angela Carter, and Ryan Lohoff. A special thanks to Michelle McGee Rambo for inspiring the desire “to be good enough to be in your tap number.”
As I walked into Tapestry Dance Studio on Wednesday evening, I was approached by two familiar faces that both said, “Come to the Tap Jam tonight with Nicholas and Acia.” Improvisation not being my strong suit, I consented with reservation. Everything started wonderfully – different rhythms, doing your own thing, watching and learning from others. It was my turn to tap one-on-one with Nicholas. We were doing great together until he stopped! Not to my surprise, I froze! This was the beginning of an incredible four days of tap at Soul to Sole!
In the days that followed, I had a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to meet and learn from the extraordinary Sarah Petronio, to have individualized instruction from Michelle Dorrance, an expert of slides, and to learn some choreography of Tapestry Dance Company from the master herself, Acia Gray. When not teaching their own classes, Nicholas Young, Jay Fagan, Matthew Shields, and Travis Knights would sometimes join these classes elevating the laughter and difficulty. What a wonderful feeling to be among and work with these great artists. Thank you Dance Council and Tapestry for making this scholarship possible.