About

Lane Alexander

1 - Founder and Director - Lane Alexander by Joe Mazza of Brave Lux Chicago.webp

CHRP Founding Director, Lane Alexander, is a master teacher, performer, choreographer, producer, advocate, and community organizer. Over the last 34 years, he has led CHRP to become the first year-round presenting institution in the U.S. dedicated to American tap and contemporary percussive arts including CHRP's education center/business incubator, the Mayfair Arts Center, the City-wide percussive dance festival, Stomping Grounds, the oldest and most comprehensive festival of American tap, Rhythm World, free arts education programs in Chicago Public Schools, We ALL Got Rhythm, and its resident ensemble, Stone Soup Rhythms.

As a teaching artist, Lane served as a Tap Master for the national touring company of Billy Elliot in Chicago and served for 10 years as a faculty member and senior advisor to the Beijing Contemporary Music Academy. He has served on the faculties of the Gus Giordano Dance Studio, the Lou Conte Dance Studio, Jacob’s Pillow, Northwestern University, Columbia College Chicago, Stephens College, and UNLV. He continues to teach beginning through advanced tap classes at the Mayfair Arts Center and at workshops and festivals around the world including regular pilgrimages to Tokyo, Paris, Stuttgart, Zurich and Helsinki.

As one of the foremost experts on Morton Gould and Danny Daniel’s Tap Dance Concerto, Lane soloed at Carnegie Hall with the New York Pops (Skitch Henderson), the Royal Festival Hall with the London Philharmonic (Rachel Worby), the Lincoln Center's Avery Fisher Hall with the Little Orchestra Society (David Allen Miller), Chicago's Symphony Center with the Chicago Sinfonietta (Paul Freeman), the Pritzker Pavilion with the Grant Park Symphony Orchestra (Christopher Bell), Powell Hall with the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra (David Robertson) and was part of a rare performance of the work as a trio with Fred Strickler and Sam Weber at the Long Beach Arena with Long Beach Symphony (Michael Krajewski).

Notable Works

Choreographed:

  • The second national tour of The Tap Dance Kid

  • Morton Gould's Tap Dance Concerto

  • Prisms

  • A Jazz Suite - Night and Day, Black Orpheus, I Love Paris in the Springtime

  • Bach's Partitas

  • Floorwerx

  • West Side Story

  • In the Meantime

  • First Things Second

Recorded:

  • The Tap Dance Concerto with the Czech National Symphony Orchestra .

Artistic Director:

  • The Emmy-nominated PBS/ITVS/WTTW documentary JUBA! Masters of Tap and Percussive Dance (1998-2000).

Directed:

  • The first full-length tap concert at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in a major hall.

  • The tap-percussive dance ensemble BAM!, which represented the U.S. at the 5th Beijing Contemporary Dance Festival

Toured and performed:

  • With the Jazz at Lincoln Center’s regional jazz program

  • As a principal and soloist with William Orlowski’s Toronto-based National Tap Dance Company of Canada, including a national tour of China in 1986 and the first tap dance performance at the Spoleto Festival in Italy

  • With the tap dance repertory company Austin on Tap

  • In the extended run of 42nd Street at the Candlelight Dinner Playhouse (Bill Pullinsi).

  • In summer stock at the Wagon Wheel Theater

  • In the feature-length film Outtakes.

Photos by: Joe Mazza/Brave Lux; Noah Stern Weber, courtesy of Lincoln Center and the Little Opera Society; Kristie Kahns Photography

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Awards & Recognition

Lane received an NEA American Masterpieces award, the Ruth Page Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Field, the Chicago Dance and Music Alliance Award for Outstanding Solo Performance, two IAC Choreography Fellowships, and a Chicago Dancemakers Forum Award. He has been recognized by the Chicago Tribune as a “Chicagoan of the Year,” and NewCity Stage inducted Lane into the Players Hall of Fame. He was most honored to be acknowledged by the community with the The Tommy (Mayfair Academy), the Insight Award (North Carolina Youth Tap Ensemble), Tap Legacy Award (Rhapsody in Taps/Los Angeles), Third Coast Rhythm Project Award (San Antonio), the Dallas Dance Council’s Buster Cooper Award and most recently, the Gus Giordano Legacy Award.  Lane served on Mayor-elect Rahm Emanuel’s transition policy team for arts and culture.

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