• Jessi Franks

Tapping Into Joy

This weekend I took a Tap class.

Growing up, I was a big tapper! At 12 years old, I learned the competition tap dance just from watching rehearsal. I had never taken a class. So naturally, the next year, I joined the Tap Competition Team and started training. My love for tap was born.

When I lived in New York, I worked at Broadway Dance Center and had access to incredible classes and teachers of ALL genres. Tap is an admired genre in New York, and I jumped in whole heartedly.

Then I moved to LA. Tap classes were few and far between in comparison to NYC. New friends thought it was a waste of money to take tap class because there was so little work for tap in LA. I shifted and spent my money on hip hop and contemporary classes to meet new dancers and choreographers to lead to new work.

For about ten years, my tap shoes sat in the trunk of my car next to my audition bag of goodies including heels, sneakers, knee pads, accessories, crop tops, hats, and all the things. Everything was pretty well used EXCEPT for my tap shoes.

Tap took an unforeseen 10 year + hiatus.

This weekend, I saw that a Tap Experience was going down online, and some of my old friends were teaching. It had been SO long since I’d taken a tap class. Honestly, I was terrified to embarrass myself in an open class, so…taking a class in the safety of my own home without any witnesses to watch me crash and burn felt Safe and Smart.

I put it in my calendar- Intermediate Tap Class 12:15pm with my old buddy.

Class started. I felt a little goofy and stiff with my weight transfers. But after a few minutes, I realized I was doing it, and it felt WAY better than I thought it would. Once I realized I could trust my feet, I started to move more confidently and began Dancing the steps.


I felt light!

I felt energized!

I felt like I was still 18 years old dancing with my homie without any care in the world other than the love of dance!

It was liberating and FUN, and it was a beautiful surprise that I didn't embarrass myself (by myself). It was a gift to myself to rediscover my love for tap.

I hope you find a surprising moment of joy this week too!

Tap on my friends!

*PS Old stiff tap shoes WILL result in busted blisters!

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