Patti Vickerman, In Her Father’s Footsteps

For Patti Vickerman, performance is a family business.  Her mother performed in New York City as a singer before Patti and her sister were born. Her father, Jim Byrnes, taught Patti to dance and the two of them performed as a duo for fifteen years. Their act, in vaudeville tradition, incorporated tap dance and comedic bits which featured Patti’s signature “deadpan” punch lines. Jimmy Byrnes … Continue reading Patti Vickerman, In Her Father’s Footsteps

Reggio “The Hoofer” McLaughlin

On August 1, the CDHP interview team met with Reggio “The Hoofer” McLaughlin at Old Town School of Folk Music, where he has taught tap since the 1990s. A proud Chicago native, he was introduced to tap dance at Jackson Park, where his sister was taking lessons. “It was love at first sight.” As a teenager, he paid for his own lessons with Jimmy Payne … Continue reading Reggio “The Hoofer” McLaughlin

CDHP’s Summer Interview Tour

This summer the CDHP production team worked hard to conduct at least one interview a week. In our quest for fascinating tales of dance, we criss-crossed the city, from the Newberry Library to the distant suburbs. Over the coming weeks, we’ll be sharing profiles of all nine of our interview subjects, along with pictures from our interviews and the archives. We’re very excited to introduce … Continue reading CDHP’s Summer Interview Tour

History in Motion on CAN TV

On June 6, 2017, CDHP gathered leaders of Giordano Dance Chicago at the Auditorium Theatre to celebrate and explore the company’s 54-year history and the legacy of its founder, Gus Giordano. Artistic Director Nan Giordano, Executive Director Michael McStraw, and dancer and choreographer Joshua Blake Carter discussed how techniques and traditions are preserved and passed down through generations. CDHP was proud to partner with CAN … Continue reading History in Motion on CAN TV

History in Motion: Giordano Dance Chicago

History in Motion: Giordano Dance Chicago Presented by the Chicago Dance History Project in conjunction with the Auditorium Theatre’s “Made in Chicago” Dance Series Tuesday, June 6 from 6–7pm Auditorium Theatre’s Katten-Landau Studio at Roosevelt University Admission is FREE but space is limited. RSVP here. Closing out the Auditorium Theatre’s “Made in Chicago” Dance Series is America’s original jazz dance company, Giordano Dance Chicago, performing celebrated work from … Continue reading History in Motion: Giordano Dance Chicago

Founder of Luna Negra Talks Dancing his Way to Representation

Eduardo Vilaro moved to Chicago in 1997 to pursue a Masters degree at Columbia College. Immediately thereafter, he founded Luna Negra Dance Theater in order to defy stereotypes and express the realities of Latin-Americans through authentic contemporary dance. In 2011, he left Luna Negra and returned to succeed Tina Ramirez as Artistic Director of Ballet Hispanico. Luna Negra was Chicago’s premier Latinx dance company and rose … Continue reading Founder of Luna Negra Talks Dancing his Way to Representation

Dance and Design with Margaret Nelson

This week we had the honor of interviewing Chicago production and design luminary, Margaret Nelson, for the CDHP oral histories archive. Margaret recounted for us her many years as a lighting designer in the dance community, working in spaces as distinct as Links Hall, the Kennedy Center, and Navy Pier. While remaining one of the most sought after designers in Chicago dance, she has shared her expertise with students … Continue reading Dance and Design with Margaret Nelson