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Margaret Morrison

Margaret Morrison is a rhythm tap soloist, choreographer, writer, dance scholar, and teacher. Her dance works, theater productions, fiction, and scholarship explore tap at the intersections of gender, race, queerness, and history. She has taught and performed across the United States, Europe and Brazil and is the recipient of the Flo-Bert Award and the American Tap Dance Foundation Hoofer Award for her contributions to tap dance.

 

The New York Times hailed Margaret's performing as “feather-footed and musically astute.” She has worked for over thirty-five years in multi-discipline collaborations with percussionists, poets, jazz musicians, and dancers. She began her performing career in 1986 as a founding member of the American Tap Dance Orchestra, directed by Brenda Bufalino. She toured internationally with the ATDO and appeared on the acclaimed PBS-TV Special, Tap Dance in America with Gregory Hines. Margaret also tapped in a national commercial for Seagrams. As a cultural ambassador of tap, she toured to Armenia, Romania, and Moscow, hosted by the US Embassy. She choreographs for ensembles and independent film, and wrote, starred, and tap danced in her first play Home In Her Heart, which ran for over 40 performances in New York City. 

 

Margaret holds an MFA from American Dance Festival/Hollins University. Her scholarship on tap dance has been published in Dance Research Journal, Dance Chronicle, and Los Angeles Review of Books. She is currently at work on a novel about 1930s jazz women.

 

Margaret is a popular master teacher specializing in rhythm tap technique, jazz musicality, improvisation, tap composition, and tap dance history. She has served as Education Advisor for the American Tap Dance Foundation and was on the dance faculties of Barnard College and NYU-CAP21. As creator and co-director of the Rhythm Tap Teacher Training Program, she mentors tap dance instructors across the globe in rhythm tap pedagogy and jazz excellence.

 

Training:  Margaret was born in Los Angeles where her early training included ballet with Natalia Clare of Ballet La Jeunesse, and tap and jazz with Dean Barlow in Van Nuys. In her 20s, she studied rhythm tap intensively with Brenda Bufalino and all the

great masters of the Tap Renaissance, including Jimmy Slyde, Sarah Petronio, Steve Condos, Honi Coles, Buster Brown, Cookie Cook, Lynn Dally, Chuck Green, and Gregory Hines. She was also a student of modern dance technique, improvisation, and composition at Barnard College with Cynthia Jean Cohen Bull (Cynthia Novack) and Janet Soares, and took advantage of the wealth of dance training in New York City: modern from June Finch and the Cunningham Studio, Contact Improvisation, clowning, West African dance forms, and percussion. In 2010 she completed an MFA in Dance from Hollins University/American Dance Festival, working with Thomas F. DeFrantz as her thesis advisor. She has studied acting with Carol Fox Prescott, Alexander Technique with Anne Waxman, voice with Birdey Rutkin, Pilates with Allison Easter, and writing with Cheryl King.

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