TDRN UK Network Session: May 2024

TDRN UK Network Session: May 2024

Saturday 4th May 5PM – 7PM Liverpool Arts Bar, 22 Hope St, Liverpool L1 9BY Tickets from £18

Join TDRN UK in Liverpool for a Network Session as part of Celebrating Master Juba: 200 Years On: The bicentennial birth of tap dancer William Henry Lane curated by Hannah Ballard (Sole Rebel Dance Company, Liverpool) and Lucy Thompson (PhD Student, University of Cambridge.

The Network Session will be part of the evening event, but the schedule for the whole day curated by Hannah Ballard (Sole Rebel Dance Company, Liverpool) and Lucy Thompson (PhD Student, University of Cambridge), will explore Lane’s significant histories in the UK and his legacies in Liverpool today. Enjoy history talks, a walking tour, interactive archive session, guest speakers, and a live music tap jam! All in celebration of William Henry Lane ‘Master Juba’, whose enduring legacy has shaped tap dance since the 1800s both in the UK and globally.

Evening schedule


5PM Dinner served

5:30PM Annette Walker presentation

6:30PM TDRN UK Network Session (Panel Discussion, Q&A, Social)

8:00PM – 9:30PM Live Music Tap Jam with Sole Rebel Tap

See here for the schedule of the whole day and ticketing options

TDRN UK Online Talk Series: Duke Ellington’s Dancers – The Women

TDRN UK Online Talk Series: Duke Ellington’s Dancers – The Women

TUES 23 April 2024 18:00 – 19:30 BST | 10:00 PDT | 13:00 EDT | 19:00 CEST  £6 / PWYC

Book here

Join Allana Radecki as she shares her ongoing research into the careers of Duke Ellington and his collaborators. This session delves into the fascinating life stories of Aida Overton Walker, Elida Webb, Fredi & Isobel Washington and Marie Bryant. 

Learn how their different careers evolved over time spanning performance, teaching, social activism and community building. We celebrate their triumphs, and learn more about the tribulations they faced in coping with colorism, sexism, racial and professional prejudice. These women and more will be the subject of this webinar, featuring photos, music and film clips to celebrate and appreciate the dancers who performed with Duke Ellington.

More about the dancers featured – 

Aida Overton Walker – dancer, choreographer, teacher, ACTIVIST! – Artistic Matriarch of Jazz Dancers. She established herself among the upper crust of White New York society, teaching the Cakewalk to society people in the U.S. and abroad. Her talents infused all the Williams and Walker musicals and influenced Elida Webb, Grace Glies and everyone who came into her circle.

Elida Webb – dancer, choreographer, Harlem-born, lineage keeper of Aida Overton, nurtured and trained women dancers for over twenty years. Webb received formal dance training growing up. Her credits include Shuffle Along, Runnin’ Wild, Showboat and choreographer at the Club Alabam and the Cotton Club. She codified the Charleston and helped compose “Stormy Weather.”

Fredi and Isabel Washington – These extraordinary, multi-talented, socially conscious sisters took advantage of opportunities and dealt with setbacks. 

Marie Bryant – Dancer, singer, choreographer, great influencer of jazz dance, student of Mary Bruce and Katherine Dunham, invested in social change from childhood. 

Also mentioned are: Bessie Dudley, Cora La Redd, Maude Russell, Carmen De Lavallade, Mildred Dixon.

About Allana

Artist, educator and performer, Allana Radecki has a BA in Fine Arts and MA in African American, African Diaspora Studies from Indiana University. Her research focuses on the interlocking roots and culture of jazz music and dance through autobiography and oral history. Her current book project examines the multi-faceted relationship between Duke Ellington and jazz dance, with an emphasis on tap dancers. A noted teacher of Hatha Yoga, Rhythm Tap and Modern Dance since 1986, she has taught thousands of classes to thousands of people of all ages. As a jazz tap dancer, Allana loves to improvise and also explores West African and Afro- Brazilian percussion including many years with Women of Mass Percussion and five seasons with the Indiana University Brazilian Ensemble.

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.