No Maps on My Taps + About Tap

Presented by West Coast Tap and The Cinematheque

In celebration of National Tap Dance Day, observed annually (and internationally) on May 25, West Coast Tap and The Cinematheque are pleased to present new restorations of two exhilarating dance films by American documentary filmmaker George T. Nierenberg.

The program will be introduced by Vancouver film and animation history teacher, classic movie host, and former Cotton Club tap dancer (?!) Michael van den Bos.

Founded in 2003, The West Coast Tap Dance Collective exists to promote, develop, and preserve the art of Tap Dance.

 

“The films, which I consider the two best ever made about the art, didn’t just record tap history, they became part of it, helping to stoke a revival.”
BRIAN SEIBERT, DANCE CRITIC NEW YORK TIMES

No Maps on My Taps is back. The great, elegiac documentary on tap dance is restored.”
JOAN ACOCELLA, DANCE CRITIC THE NEW YORKER

 

 

 

 

No Maps on My Taps
USA 1979. Dir: George T. Nierenberg. 58 min. DCP

NEW RESTORATION! Documentarian George T. Nierenberg (Say Amen, Somebody) had intended to make an elegy for the then-dying art of tap; his joyous, ebullient 1979 film was actually instrumental in the dance form’s revival. No Maps on My Taps showcases legendary New York hoofers Bunny Briggs, Chuck Green, and Howard “Sandman” Sims, all still dancing up a storm (here, to Lionel Hampton’s music) as they approach their senior years. Great clips from the 1930s demonstrate the gifts of Bill “Bojangles” Robinson, John Bubbles, and others. Newly restored by New Jersey’s Milestone Films, the film is a toe-tapping treat throughout and (with all due respect to the likes of Fred Astaire and Gene Kelly) makes the case for tap as an important African-American art form.


— followed by —

 

 

 

 

About Tap
USA 1985. Dir: George T. Nierenberg. 28 min. DCP

NEW RESTORATION! George T. Nierenberg’s 1979 hit documentary No Maps for My Taps arrived hot on the heels (pun intended) of Gregory Hines’s star-making turn in 1978’s Broadway smash Eubie! The two events are credited with reenergizing the art of tap. In Nierenberg’s sequel, Hines shares childhood memories of attending Harlem’s Apollo Theatre, and we meet dance greats Steve Condos, Chuck Green, and Jimmy Slyde.