Tom Waits has his Rain Dogs, Drake's has its Devil Dogs, and now Australia is giving the world Tap Dogs, a new dance musical revue set to tour North America this fall and winter, culminating in an Off-Broadway stint at a theatre TBA in early spring 1997.
Created and choreographed by Dein Perry, Tap Dogs is described as "a ninety-minute, rough, touch and rocking reinvention of tap for the 90's."
The New York engagement could result in a high-profile tap-off with Bring in 'Da Noise, Bring in 'Da Funk, the 1996 tap/rap/soul revue that won a Best Choreography Tony for tapmaster Savion Glover.
Perry trained to be an industrial machinist in the steel town of Newcastle but got his big break when he was cast in the long-running Sydney production of 42nd Street. With friends he later formed the group "Tap Brothers" and went on to choreograph Hot Shoe Shuffle on London's West End, for which he received a 1985 Olivier Award.
Perry then teamed up with designer/choreographer Nigel Triffitt to create Tap Dogs, which played at the Sydney Theatre Festival, the Edinburgh Festival and the West End, leading to a second Olivier for Perry in 1996. The North-American tour (to be followed by an "Australasian" tour) began in Los Angeles on Sept. 3 and runs there through Sept. 22.
Additional tour dates are:
VANCOUVER (Vogue Theatre), Sept. 25-29, 1996 (604)280-4444
SEATTLE (Moore Theatre), Oct. 1-13, 1996 (206)628-0888
PHOENIX (Union Theatre), Oct. 16-20, 1996 (602)678-2222
SAN DIEGO (Spreckles Theatre), Oct. 22-Nov. 3, 1996 (619)220-TIXS
DENVER (Buell Theatre), Nov. 5-Nov.10, 1996 (303)640-2862
MINNEAPOLIS (State Theatre), Nov. 12-Nov. 17, 1996 (612)373-0542
HOUSTON (Cullen Theatre), Nov. 19-Nov. 24, 1996 (713)853-8000
SALT LAKE CITY (Theatre TBA), Nov. 26-Dec. 1, 1996 SAN FRANCISCO (Orpheum Theatre) Dec. 3-Dec.15, 1996 (415)673-6400
WASHINGTON DC (Warner Theatre), Jan. 7-Jan 12, 1997 (202)626-1050
CHICAGO (Shubert Theatre), Jan.14-Jan. 26, 1997 (312)977-1700
PHILADELPHIA (Merriam Theatre), Jan. 28-Feb 2, 1997 (215)732-5997
BALTIMORE (Mechanic Theatre), Feb. 4-Feb. 9, 1997 (301)625-4320
DETROIT (Fisher Theatre), Feb. 11-Feb.16, 1997 (313)872-1000
CLEVELAND (Theatre TBA), Feb. 18-Feb. 23, 1997
NEW YORK (Off-Bway Theatre TBA), Feb. or Mar. 1997
-- By David Lefkowitz