Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Savion Glover

     I had the good fortune to attend a talk by dancer Savion Glover today at Nelson Auditorium.  He's appearing tonight at Duke's Page Auditorium.
     Savion is a good will ambassador for dance.  He started tap dancing at age 7 and his mentor was Gregory Hine.  Savion's latest accolate is the Broadway show, "Shuffle Along," which won him a Tony.
     This man is a student of tap dancing and is really serious about it.  In fact, he thinks of it as a high art form.  Some of the noteworthy musicians he has worked with are Arnett Coleman, Gregory Hines, McCoy Tyner, and Wayne Shorter.   Hines was his mentor.  
     His rhythmic talents began at the age of four and progressed to tap dancing.  At one point, he started to understand that thesse jazz musicians were sure about their craft."
     He described himself as having "an improvisational approach to life."  And as being late to everything because this helps to "raise the tension."
     He spoke about "tap dancing being a language."  And the language beneath that language.
     Marshall Davis, Jr. is a partner to Savion.  They grew up together so have developed a bond of trust and rapport over the years, even making the "same mistakes at the same time."
      Savion is his own person and has taken tap to a high form of art. The son of acclaimed actor, Danny Glover, I wonder if Glover refers to himself as father to Savion Glover.  Probably so.
       He has the utmost reverence for tap.  I need to learn about its history.  Are its roots in Africa, or the U. S.?
       Glover won a Tony for "Shuffle Along."  (Eubie Blake influence?)
      He calls dance "his life" and is grateful to God that he can share his talents.  He calls dance "the greatest means of expression."
       Marshall, his partner, proclaims that dancing is "not like work."
       After graciously sharing an hour of their time with the audience, the pair spent another 15 minutes answering questions and posing for photographs.

       After an interim in the library and having a picnic dinner, I headed over to Page for the concert, one of historical proportions.  Savior Glover has become the savior of tap.

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