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Tommy Tune and More to Celebrate Chicago Human Rhythm Project's 25th Anniversary

The Chicago Human Rhythm Project (CHRP) celebrates 25 years of creating community through American tap and contemporary percussive arts in world-class, innovative performance, education and outreach programs with a series of exciting programs in 2015, including STOMPING GROUNDS, a free concert sampler April 14­-May 8; the Chicago Rhythm Fest finale concert May 13 at the Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University; and special guest Tony Award winner Tommy Tune receiving CHRP's JUBA! Award at its 25th Anniversary Jubalee July 30 at the Museum of Contemporary Art.

STOMPING GROUNDS and Chicago Rhythm Fest: April 14-May 13

Making its debut April 14-May 13, the Chicago Rhythm Fest spotlights Chicago's exceptional and diverse percussive dance community while celebrating African, Irish, Mexican, Spanish and American cultural traditions. This inaugural event is a citywide celebration of the rhythmic arts that connects diverse communities through rhythm.

Opening the Chicago Rhythm Fest is STOMPING GROUNDS, a series of free events in five distinct communities showcasing five of Chicago's most accomplished percussive arts companies: CHRP's resident ensemble BAM!, Ensemble Español Spanish Dance Theatre, Mexican Dance Ensemble, Muntu Dance Theatre of Chicago and Trinity Irish Dance Company. Each performance features two host companies and cameos by members of the other three participating ensembles.

  • April 14, 6 p.m., Chicago Cultural Center, 78 E. Washington Street: Moving Dialogs, a panel discussion about the evolution and relevance of traditional dance forms in contemporary settings featuring the artistic directors of the STOMPING GROUNDS companies, sponsored by Audience Architects
  • April 18, 7:30 p.m., Irish American Heritage Center, 4626 N. Knox Avenue: performance hosted by Trinity Irish Dance Company and Mexican Dance Ensemble plus cameos by the other companies
  • April 24, 7:30 p.m., National Museum of Mexican Art, 1852 W. 19th Street: performance hosted by Mexican Dance Ensemble and Trinity Irish Dance Company plus cameos by the other companies
  • April 30, 7:30 p.m., Northeastern Illinois University (NEIU), 5500 N. St. Louis Avenue: performance hosted by Ensemble Español Spanish Dance Theatre and Muntu Dance Theatre of Chicago plus cameos by the other companies
  • May 8, 7:30 p.m., DuSable Museum of African American History, 740 E. 56th Place: performance hosted by Muntu Dance Theatre of Chicago and Ensemble Español Spanish Dance Theatre plus cameos by the other companies

As the culminating event of the Chicago Rhythm Fest, CHRP re-imagines its inaugural National Tap Dance Day concert 25 years ago, featuring all five companies in concert May 13 at 7:30 p.m. at the Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University. Part of a citywide celebration, this unique collaboration closes the Auditorium Theatre's "Made in Chicago" Dance Series sponsored by The Boeing Company. Tickets are $27-67 and are on sale at AuditoriumTheatre.org, 800-982-ARTS and the Auditorium Theatre box office, 50 E. Congress Parkway.

TOMMY TUNE Attends 25th Anniversary Jubalee July 30

CHRP's 25th Anniversary Jubalee gala benefit takes place Thursday, July 30 at the Museum of Contemporary Art. The evening, which includes a reception and dinner, welcomes nine-time Tony Award-winning performer, choreographer and director Tommy Tune, who performs his one-man show Taps, Tunes and Tall Tales, accompanied by his music director, Michael Biagi. CHRP also presents Tune with its 25th Anniversary JUBA! Award for Extraordinary Lifetime Achievement. For more information, call 312-542-2477 or visit chicagotap.org.

More 25th Anniversary Season Events

CHRP's annual Winter Tap JAMboree February 13-15 features master classes taught by guests Cartier Williams, a leading tap choreographer and protégé of Savion Glover, and Nicholas Young, who received a 2014 New York Dance and Performance Award ("Bessie") for Outstanding Music Composition, along with some of Chicago's finest, including CHRP Founder/Director Lane Alexander--who recently received a Tap Legacy Award while performing with Rhapsody in Taps in Los Angeles-and Bril Barrett, Martin Bronson, Zada Cheeks, Matt Crowle, Starinah Dixon, Nico Rubio and hip-hop/break dancer Monty Rezell. Also during the weekend: Tap Scholar Auditions awarding up to $10,000 to dancers aged 12 to 18 toward tuition for CHRP's 25th Anniversary Rhythm World summer festival of American tap and auditions for Nicholas Young's Institute For The Rhythmic Arts (IFTRA). Information and registration are available at 312-922-1272 or chicagotap.org.

The 25th annual Rhythm World summer festival of tap and percussive dance takes place July 6-August 2 at CHRP's American Rhythm Center, Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago and the Jazz Showcase. The fifth year of a five-year international focus (Canada, Japan, Brazil, Europe) spotlights Chicago and U.S. artists. For more information, call 312-542-2477 or visit chicagotap.org.

For more information about Chicago Human Rhythm Project's 25th anniversary season, visit chicagotap.org.

Chicago Human Rhythm Project Founded in 1990, Chicago Human Rhythm Project (CHRP) builds community by presenting American tap dance and contemporary percussive arts in world-class and innovative performance, education and community outreach programs. During the last 22 years, CHRP has produced multiple community-based collaborations involving shared revenue programs, concerts and touring opportunities, including:

  • annual National Tap Dance Day concerts, featuring an array of tap and percussive dance artists
  • a shared revenue program designed to assist Chicago's budding tap community to build capacity through audience development, created in 2001
  • Thanks 4 Giving, another innovative shared revenue program launched in 2005 as part of its annual Global Rhythms concerts at the Harris Theater, through which CHRP has partnered with more than 100 Chicago-based nonprofits to raise funds for a wide variety of service agencies
  • participation in the 5th Anniversary Beijing International Dance Festival, assembling 70 artists to represent the United States
  • establishment of the American Rhythm Center (ARC), providing a shared, affordable and sustainable education, rehearsal and administrative facility for several leading Chicago arts organizations in the historic Fine Arts Building
  • curating the first ever, full-length performance of concert tap dance on a main stage of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts on December 7, 2012

CHRP's vision is to establish the first global center for American tap and percussive arts, creating a complete ecosystem of education, performance, creation and community in a state-of-the-art facility uniting generations of diverse artists and the public.


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