Lane Alexander is the co-founder and director of the Chicago Human Rhythm Project, the oldest, largest and most comprehensive presenter of American tap dance concerts, educational forums and outreach programs in the United States. He has performed Morton Gould's Tap Dance Concerto with some of the world's greatest orchestras including the London Philharmonic/Royal Festival Hall, the New York Pops/Carnegie Hall and the Chicago Sinfonietta/Symphony Center. Lane is the only tap artist to have received two Choreography Fellowships from the Illinois Arts Council, an Emmy nomination, the Ruth Page Award, the Dance and Music Alliance Award as well as the CDF Lab Artist grant.
DURING THE CDF YEAR
Lane chose to immerse himself in rhythmic aesthetics and movement choices outside of his established vocabulary to experience physical and rhythmic alternatives to his established kinetic and musical patterns. During the first phase of his CDF project, Lane worked intensively on technique and choreo-compositions with tap diva Dianne Walker, Bessie Award winner Sam Weber and Emmy Award winner Jason Samuels Smith. This immersion phase was followed by a public audition from which 5 dancers were selected to participate in the creation of new work.
He has appeared with Donald O'Connor, Gregory Hines, Jimmy Slyde, Peg Leg Bates, the Nicholas Brothers and many other great masters and continues to study with Dianne Walker, Fred Strickler, Sam Weber and William Orlowski.
"After focusing for over 15 years on presenting other people's work, the CDF grant allowed me to reconnect to my own creative impulse, which has led to a new ensemble BAM, performances around the world and a new school/rehearsal space called The Tap Studio." - Lane Alexander
The result was a suite of dances set to Chick Corea's Children's Songs which premiered May 17, 2004 and was included in WTTW's focus on the arts programming. Perhaps more importantly, the CDF grant led to the creation of a new ensemble - BAM! - that has since performed for over 15,000 Chicago, K-12 students, through Urban Gateways; as a part of Dance Chicago; and at venues around Chicago, the Midwest and at a growing number of national/international venues.