I was invited to the press night of The Tap Pack, the hit tap dancing extravaganza from Australia that’s running throughout May at The Peacock Theatre. This included a pre-show dance masterclass from the Tap Pack, five incredibly cute guys who are also actual tap wizards. The show is so good, but more on that in just a second. First they showed us how to do a sequence from the show, and we had a Q&A with them.
After putting us through our paces with a fun routine (like any of us could dream of being so good, haaa!), they told us how they got together and devised the show. I was surprised to hear they are childhood friends, three of them attended the same dance school, and it really comes across on stage – the camaraderie really makes the show. Check out those tap shoes! I love tap dancing, ever since I first watched Singing in the Rain as a kid (approximately one hundred times), and I was excited to see a wee bit of one the routines from this film in The Tap Pack. This show isn’t a musical with a narrative, it’s a fast-packed sequence of routines, songs and comedy. The theme is Frank Sinatra’s Rat Pack era, and there’s plenty of early 1960’s film-esque glamour in the suits, the cocktail bar on stage, and the crooning. There’s also a clever infusion of contemporary songs, including Wonderwall, Ed Sheeran, and Michael Jackson. The show moves at a pace, with group routines and solo dances, each designed to help us to get to the know each Tap Pack member a bit more, and there’s plenty of audience participation (just rhythm clapping, don’t worry, not dancing). The genuine friendship between the group helps the quick-witted improvised banter flow nicely.
We were treated to some lovely wine, but I think the bar (of the theatre, not our press bar) missed a trick by not having some show-themed cocktails you could order. It’s the kind of show that’s perfect to sip a smooth cocktail along to, especially as the action revolves around a cocktail bar. They could have had Frank Sinatra’s favourite drink – Jack Daniels with lemonade and a dash of lime cordial.
I’d never been to the Peacock Theatre before, it’s right down the end of The Strand, but close enough to walk to from Charing Cross or Covent Garden, and it’s a big theatre with a lot of heart. If you like dance, check out their programme, it has a fantastic range. I can’t recommend the Tap Pack enough, it’s a show that will leave you feeling like you can walk on air, or even lead to you pretending you’re Gene Kelly at home. I mean, you might do that, I didn’t… (much).
The Tap Pack is on until the 19th of May