Media Archive

Brian Seibert on the Evolution of Tap

Brian Seibert, Sasha Anawalt
January 25, 2016

Brian Seibert, a dance critic for The New York Times, offers an authoritative account of the great American art of tap dancing in his new book, What the Eye Hears. Seibert’s entertaining history illuminates tap’s complex origins—from the jig and clog influences brought from Africa by slaves, to its growth as a cousin to jazz in the vaudeville circuits, to its ubiquity on Broadway and in Hollywood, and finally its post-World War II decline and more recent reinvention. In this clip, Seibert, born and raised in Los Angeles, discusses the mutual influence of tap and jazz, the eyes and the ears.

Share on