The Tap Factor - Sarasota, Asolo Rep

photo by Sarah Babcock -

photo by Sarah Babcock -

"I loved witnessing the powerful effects of uniting two groups from different backgrounds together for one program. It is from here that I have started to encourage that multiple groups work in tandem to meet common objectives when building a program with the Tap Factor."

Founding Artistic Directer - Christopher Erk


Here's how it worked!

In 2013, Founding Artistic Director of the Tap Factor, Chris Erk facilitated the Community Engagement Program in conjunction with the Newtown Estates Community Center and the Manatee School for the Arts. The plan was that the two groups would work independently and together over the course of six meetings in three weeks. In that time, participants built portable tap boards, attended four tap sessions, and danced in two live performance - one at the Sarasota Farmers Market and the other along side Broadway performers in a post-show demonstration following a production of Noah Racey's Pulse at the Asolo Repertory Theater.


Build a board

Get Sponsored

On day one, the groups from Newtown Estates and Manatee School for the Arts met for the first time. Here they crafted their boards and got to know each other. During this period facilitators Chris Erk and Anthony Russo held an open discussion regarding what tap means to us and how we see it in the world. It was here everyone got hype about the days ahead.

Sponsorship was received through programs and patrons of the Asolo Repertory Theater in Sarasota, Fl. This cover the cost of instruction, tap board building materials, and tap shoes for those that didn't have them. The Tap Factor is happy to help individuals or group leaders propose the program to potential sponsors.  

Get tapping

The Tap Factor's Christopher Erk and Anthony Russo met with the two groups separately. This allowed each group to get to classes more easily and for the instruction to be suited to fit the specific learning style of each group. As they met together at the performances, the participants got to find the common bond of tap dance that they each shared and worked together to present to the audiences.  

The Asolo Repertory Theater

Sarasota Farmer's Market

The performance at the Asolo Repertory Theater was where the work of everyone involved shined. Not only did the participants of the Tap Factor Engagement Program perform on stage at their esteemed regional theater, they also performed along side professional Broadway performers. The cast of Noah Racey's Pulse eagerly joined the Tap Factor on stage in an unforgettable post-show presentation. 

The Sarasota Farmer's market was a great place to set out for the Tap Factor Sarasota's first live event. They were able to separate and rove about the event and find different locations where they could tap freely. There was a set time and location where they offered a larger and more structured demonstration and performance. The presentation ended in a group-led follow along segment, which the crowd could enjoy. 


Find out how the Tap Factor Engagement Program can fit in your community!