Posted by: Mark | October 24, 2008

Well I Wish I Could Dance

One of the under-discussed fringe benefits of working at an independent school is the school assembly. Of course, there are also under-discussed fringe downers, like cafeteria duty, dance chaperoning (arguably could fit in both categories, depending on the context), etc. But the school assembly, when done well, can be frickin sweet.

I’ve seen my fair share of bad school assemblies, but today we had one of the best ever. Jason Samuel Smith, an internationally respected tap dancer and an Emmy-winner, blew the doors off our school auditorium today when he showed up to dance and talk about his career, his art form, and his life. There are tons of youtube videos of this guy, the one that follows is from “So You Think You Can Dance.”

He busted some serious moves throughout the assembly that had the crowd in a frenzy. And he did it right, mixing his dance moves with some emotional as well as academic explanations of tap. As a world history teacher, I was particularly impressed and grateful that he talked about the development of tap as a blending of African and European cultures.

On the whole, not a bad day at work. I don’t want to sound cheeky, but how many of you other people can claim to have a “day at the office” and get to shake hands with an Emmy winner?

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