« Tap

Katharine Ponza

Hailing originally from Sydney, Australia, Katharine Ponza is a New York City-based performer, dance educator and choreographer. She currently teaches on the faculty of STEPS on Broadway, Broadway Dance Center, and Shuffles Broadway Tap & Musical Theatre School, NYC, and has taught classes at institutions such as NYU Steinhardt, LIU Brooklyn, and Juilliard. Katharine teaches workshops and master classes throughout the U.S. and abroad, specializing in tap and theatre dance.

Katharine's performance career spans more than 20 years, primarily consisting of musical theatre, but including gala performances and benefits at the Las Vegas Hilton, Caesar's Palace, Las Vegas, the Sydney Opera House, and the Australian Parliament House. She performs at the Big Apple Tap Festival, Tap City - The New York City Tap Festival, Stamp-ede, The Choreographers' Canvas, NYC, The Choreographers' Forum, NYC, Birdland Jazz Club, NYC, and for The Ziegfeld Society in NYC. For 3 and a half years, Katharine performed as a featured showgirl in "Jubilee!" at Bally's, Las Vegas. She is a founding member of Germaine Salsberg's tap dance company, "Les Femmes."

Class Descriptions:
Basic Tap
This class is suitable for all novice tappers or anyone who has never tapped before, and are interested in learning. We explore the fundamentals of tap technique, taking time to break down the steps, and explain what we're doing, and more importantly: why. Whether you're looking to tap professionally, or just learning for fun, this class will give you an excellent foundation to build on. In this class we cover a variety of styles and genres, from Broadway and movie musicals to more contemporary rhythm styles, so that students can see how basic tap techniques fit into every style and feel, and learn how to use the entire body to Tap Dance. The class is intended to be a friendly, fun introduction to tap, where everyone can learn in a supportive environment, while giving you a clear understanding of all the fundamentals you'll need as you progress.
Beginner Tap
This class is the logical progression from my Basic Tap class, where we continue to learn and develop a tap technique that will span across a variety of styles and genres. The pace of instruction is faster than in Basic Tap, although there's still plenty of attention given to breaking down steps and choreography, and understanding proper technique, and the ways in which your body helps your sound and can adapt the technique to mesh with each style/genre of music. As students are expected to have familiarity with basic tap technique already, choreography is more developed than in the Basic class. Still suitable for most beginners, this class may run a little quick for those with little tap experience, who may find the Basic class a more comfortable starting point.
Adv Beginner Tap
In this class we introduce more advanced techniques, and more complex choreography, building on the foundations of technique learned in Basic and Beginner levels. While some time is still devoted to breaking down choreography and technique, the pace is much quicker, and this level is devoted to more advanced steps and techniques, and more complex choreography. A solid foundation of basic tap technique is necessary to get the most out of this class. We explore music and choreography in a vast variety of styles, including repertory pieces from Broadway, film, and tap history. Whether you're auditioning in tap, working to improve your technique to be able to, or simply enjoy dancing at this level, you will have fun in this class.
Intermediate Tap
In this class we focus on developing advanced tap techniques, and on learning and performing more advanced choreography. While some time is devoted to polishing your technique, most of the class is devoted to learning choreography, and developing and refining your style and interpretation. A strong focus of this class is the stressing of the "dance" part of tap dance - of being able to integrate good tap technique with all styles of choreography. We cover a mix of styles, so this is a perfect class for working professionals or auditioning dancers who want to improve their ability to quickly pick up choreography, and adapt to different stylistic direction. This class covers both "theater" and "rhythm" style techniques and choreography in depth. It also provides training on how to fuse the two together seamlessly, giving you a broad, flexible knowledge base, and an understanding of your own facility - knowing your body and extending it's existing boundaries of what tap dance is. Improvisational skills are also developed, along with explorations of various pieces from a broad range of tap repertory.