The Young Hoofers®
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Traci Mann, Artistic Director

The Original Hoofers® became the role models for many young dancers. Their members included founder, Lon Chaney (King of the Paddle and Roll), Chuck Green (The Godfather of Tap), Dr. James ‘Buster’ Brown (also a member of The Copasetics), Dr. Jimmy Slyde, Howard ‘Sandman’ Sims, and George Hillman, to name a few. These are the men whom The Young Hoofers® have looked up to in respect for the art of tap dance. The Young Hoofers® have adopted the motto of The Original Hoofers® which is “to keep the art of tap dancing alive.”

The Young Hoofers®, Calvin Booker, Lance Liles and Sheldon Gordon, trained with Ms. Mann from 1994 to 1998. (During that time they performed on stage with Chuck Green, Buster Brown, and Sandman Sims.) Ms. Mann passed on the Paddle and Roll Time Steps of Buster Brown, Carnell Lyons, Savion Glover, Chuck Green “The Godfather of Tap,” Lon Chaney “King of the Paddle and Roll,” and the ‘Four Step Brothers.’ By 1999, The Young Hoofers® were performing on a regular basis as a professional team. Our new members are MC Corwin “C-Flex” Booker, Alex “AC” Cowings, and Dewitt Fleming. Our one and only honorary member is Jared Grimes.

Off Off Broadway credits: ‘This Joint Is Jumpin(SM)’, Starring, Peg Leg Bates and Chuck Green “The Godfather of Tap”; ‘Dancing Under the Desert Moon(SM)’, starring Buster Brown and Frank Owen;, Tap –N- Blues Starring, Sandman Sims; ‘Hoofin’ In Harlem(SM)’, starring The Young Hoofers®; ‘Evening Stars Onstage’ September 11, 2000 at the World Trade Center.

Off Broadway credits: ‘Broadway Under Ground’ co-produced by Project Dance, Dewitt Fleming and Jared Grimes.

The Young Hoofers® starred in the following Broadway showcases, ‘Taste of Broadway’; Ecofest- ‘Tap In for Clean Tap Water’ at Lincoln Center with the George Gee Orchestra; ‘Tribute to Tap Giants’ and ‘Tap Legends Live’ with the Sydney Bechet Society Jazz Big Band; and ‘Hats On Taps Off for Gregory’ at the Walter Reade Theater.

They have appeared at the Gershwin, NYC Town Hall, ‘Highlights in Jazz’ at BMCC, ‘Tap Extravaganza®’, Flushing Town Hall, and the Cunard Building for the grand opening of the Hermes Store on Wall Street.

Television credits include: Good Day New York, Sally Jesse Raphael Show, Showtime @the Apollo (2 Time Winners), Good Morning NY, 60 Minutes II, Harkness Foundation’s Film, “100 Years of Dance On Film”, NY Nets Half Time Talent, Disney’s “Out of the Box”, a national television commercial for Chili’s Boneless Buffalo Wings. Jared Grimes performed on national television with Mariah Carey in April of 2005. Lance Liles is also a producer of beats and his music is being played currently on Hot97 FM Radio.

Magazine credits: Dance Magazine’s “Top 25 to Watch”

The Young Hoofers® have performed in tributes to tap masters: Sandman Sims, Savion Glover, Gregory Hines, Sammy Davis Jr.’ and Mable Lee, and have performed in festivals at Central Park Summer Stage, International Festival of the Arts, Festival Of Metropolitan Artists, Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival 99, and Metlife’s First Night.           

The Young Hoofers® are proud to be affiliated with great organizations such as: Sydney Bechet Society, Mark Sonder Music, Dance Theater of Harlem, Westside Cultural Center, and Highlights In Jazz, and the Brooklyn Arts Council.

The Young Hoofers® were founded in 1997 by Traci Mann, Artistic Director. Tap dance is an American art form. It is a dance of celebration, an exchange of rhythmic conversations, and above all, fun!



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