TDRN UK Online Talk Series: Tap Dance Pedagogy Research – Exploring an Oral Tradition

TDRN UK Online Talk Series: Tap Dance Pedagogy Research – Exploring an Oral Tradition


Sunday 24 March 2024 18:00 – 19:30 GMT | 11:00 PDT | 14:00 EDT | 19:00 CEST £6 / PWYC

Dr Trish Melton will share an extract of her research and discuss how her role as an academic researcher, tap dancer, and cultural surrogate supports this ethnographic exploration of tap dance pedagogy.


Trish is a tap dance educator, researcher and choreographer. She runs a community-based dance school and a tap dance performance group: The Kerry Tap Ensemble. Trish also runs a global project management consultancy. A professional background in teaching and training in project management is entirely transferable to all aspects of her professional life.

Her key research area is tap dance pedagogy. She completed an MA (Distinction) in dance education with the RAD/Bath University. Her research explored the narratives of tap dance teaching: the oral history passed down through the Tap Masters and reviewed what this means for teaching today through practical action research.

Her current research interests continue to be tap dance pedagogy with one area of focus being the use of tap dance repertory in teaching and how the historical and cultural perspectives can enhance the learning experience. She is currently undertaking a PhD in Tap Dance Pedagogy at The Centre for Dance Research (C-DaRE) Coventry University UK.

TDRN UK Network Session: December 2023

TDRN UK Network Session: December 2023

TDRN UK Network Session – Revisiting the Story of Jazz Dance. 

Sunday 10 December 2023 13:00 – 16:00 GMT. FREE / donations welcome

Book here

Hosted by Annette Walker with special guest, Jreena Green. Join us in person or online

Colombo Centre, 34–68 Colombo Street, London SE1 8DP

TDRN UK Network Sessions bring together people from around the world to share knowledge, ideas and information about tap dance and connected topics. Annette Walker (tap dancer) and Jreena Green (authentic jazz dancer) will host a discussion about what the Stearns’s Jazz Dance book means to tap dancers and authentic jazz dancers 55 years after it was first published.

They will also introduce the Jazz Dance Collective, an educational hub for Tap Dance, Authentic Jazz, and UK Jazz, before opening up the space for a tap and jazz dance studio jam and social catch up.

13:00 – 14:30 Discussion: Revisiting the Story of Jazz Dance

14:30 – 15:00 Refreshments

15:00 – 16:00 Social and open Studio Jam for tap and jazz dancers. Musicians welcome.

Network Session November 2023: Tap Cafe

Network Session November 2023: Tap Cafe

Wednesday 29th November 2023 19:00 GMT | 11:00 PST | 14:00 EST | 20:00 CET FREE

Join us in the Tap Cafe!

Grab a cuppa and meet us in our online open space to chat all things tap dance!  You might have a question, a research idea, some news to share, or are simply looking to connect with other tap dancers from around the world.

We look forward to seeing you there!

Book a FREE ticket

TDRN UK Online Talk Series: Contextualising Buddy Bradley in British Film

TDRN UK Online Talk Series: Contextualising Buddy Bradley in British Film

Tuesday 29 August 2023 19:00 – 20:30 BST | 11:00 PDT | 14:00 EDT | 20:00 CEST £6 / PWYC TICKETS

Annette Walker presents a follow up to her initial March 2021 presentation about a forgotten choreographer of British musical stage and screen, Buddy Bradley.

Buddy Bradley worked extensively in British musical theatre from his arrival in London in 1930 until he returned to New York in the 1960s. He made significant contributions to dance practice, choreographed for BBC productions and was the first credited black choreographer of British musical film, yet his work is barely acknowledged in British dance history. Buddy’s career began in New York where he coached many performers including Fred and Adele Astaire, Eleanor Powell and Lucille Ball. In London, he ran a dance school for over twenty years and was known as the number one coach to the stars including John Mills, Audrey Hepburn and Bruce Forsyth but his most significant work was with the stage and film star, Jessie Matthews.

Annette Walker’s presentation looks at a selection of Buddy Bradley’s surviving work in British musical film and the social and historical context of his life and career as an African-American choreographer in Britain. Uncovering Bradley’s dance work in film requires navigating negative racial stereotypes and tropes of black people that were prominent in Britain during the mid-twentieth century. The presentation raises questions about how racialisations in theatrical productions impact viewing tap dance and the work required to undo the “invisibilisation” of Black contributions to British musical theatre and dance history.


Biography: Annette Walker MA BSc (Hons) DipHE

Annette is an accomplished, multi-talented performing artist who has appeared in a variety of theatre, film, television and concert productions. Her tap dance features include the BBC Proms 2019 Duke Ellington’s Sacred Music concert at the Royal Albert Hall, Swinging at the Cotton Club (UK tour) and the short film, Dateleap (2022). As an aerial circus artist, she was one of the Mary Poppinses in the London 2012 Olympic Opening Ceremony.

Annette is the founder and the musical director of the band, Rhythmaticians, and headlined the Marsden Jazz Festival with her new tap dance show in 2021. She also works as a music director and musician for other dance, music and theatre productions with credits that include Swing Sister Swing (UK tour 2022), Myke Masters Band and Sandi Toksvig’s Mirth Control at the WOW Festival at the Southbank Centre.

Annette’s passion for integrating music and dance continues off stage as a researcher and educator and she has taught at many dance and music institutions including, Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts, Royal Academy of Dance, The BRIT School, National Youth Jazz Collective and Tomorrow’s Warriors. She led the Renegade Stage (tap improvisation workshop) at the London Tap Jam for over 15 years, and is currently a co-director of Tap Dance Research Network UK. Annette is a fully funded AHRC PhD student researching the influence of African American choreographer, Buddy Bradley, on the British musical stage.

Network Session April 2023: Tap Dance Pedagogy with Trish Melton

Network Session April 2023: Tap Dance Pedagogy with Trish Melton

Tuesday 25 April 2023 19:30 GMT | 11:30 PDT | 14:30 EDT | 20:30 CET FREE

Book here

Dr Trish Melton, will share a small aspect of her current Tap Dance Pedagogy Research. She will be joined by Lisa La Touche and Mark Yonally who will give their views on the research, and then the three will discuss before opening the floor to Q&A.