Adela Azses sees Tap Dancing as the great equalizer and bonding experience. A dancer known in both the US and Latin America for great skill, her dance experience with Tap Life Company has placed Adela alongside dancers who have worked with such acclaimed artists as Stevie Wonder, and Earth Wind & Fire. Azses praises Tap as a dance art from that offers as much in personal expression as it demands in mastery. It’s given this Latin born dancer one more thing to appreciate about America and its contributions to the arts. Tap Life Company resides in New York City but travels throughout a fair part of the US to exhibit that this truly American art form is alive, well, and capturing the attention within and beyond the country’s borders. Under the direction of Anthony Locascio, Tap Life Company is a premier attraction at events including Dance Astoria, Big Apple Tap Festival, and National Tap Day performances. Adela’s involvement with Tap Life is one of the paramount experiences in her already illustrious career.
The embrace of diversity is not ubiquitous these days; even less common is an undertaking which levels the playing field for nearly all involved. This is perhaps the characteristic which Adela find most inspiring about Tap and her time with Tap Life Company. She agrees noting, “I love the variety of styles and ages the company has. From teenagers to those much older than me, Tap is something which is available to a wide set of people and lifestyles. I’ve been inspired by dancers of all lifestyles, backgrounds, ages, etc. You truly get out of it what you put into it. The most rewarding part of being a Tap Life member has been growing with everyone and seeing everyone improve themselves, I love when people around me conquer their challenges, because it pushes me to work harder too. I love watching people become more confident and achieve things they once struggled with.”
Every great artist has a mentor who pushes and inspires them. In the Tap life of Azses this is Anthony LoCascio. LoCascio has toured the world and performed on television shows ranging from Regis & Kathy to MTV. He performed with the renowned Tap Dogs for seventeen years and was the first American to earn a standing role with the group. Working with such an internationally famous director does not go under appreciated by Adela who states, “Working with Anthony is an amazing experience. He’s always so welcoming and humble. He has a tattoo on his arm which says ‘we don’t do sorry’ and he loves to show it to you if you apologize about making a mistake. He emphasizes that the ‘LIFE’ part of tap life is equally as important as the tap part and that creating a good environment and being kind and supportive of one another is crucial for things to work as a professional company. Having someone who has achieved so much communicate the importance of kindness resonates profoundly with all of the dancers. We’re very fortunate to have the benefit of his talent AND wisdom.”
When one considers some of the most legendary dancers known in the world of Tap; Gene Kelly (Oscar nominated for Singing in the Rain), Gregory Hines (four-time Primetime Emmy Nominee), James Cagney (Oscar winning actor), Donald O’Connor (Golden Globe winner, also known for Singin’ in the Rain), we often associate Tap with a zeal for life and a general sense of good nature. The popularity of Tap seems to experience the same ebb and flow as other genres but has been increasing again in recent years. Adela Azses is using her talent as part of the incoming tide to declare that Tap is indeed synonymous with life. She declares, “My favorite part is the community. Tap dancers are very special people and I can truly say Tap dance has given me second family.”