Jazz musicians and tap dancers will combine their creative talents during a show at the upcoming Infringing Dance Festival.
Andrew Homzy’s NOLA NightHawks perform with tap and swing dancers Kat Single-Dain and Timothy Allen on Saturday (July 8) at Maffeo Sutton Park.
The show is free to attend and is being presented by the Nanaimo International Jazz Festival.
Homzy said the jazz festival was invited to participate in Infringing by the Crimson Coast Dance Society.
“We are very excited about the opportunity to perform because it also helps promote our jazz festival event that happens in September,” said Homzy.
He said jazz and tap have similar histories of development, because they combine a mix of European and African influences. Single-Dain and Allen will perform during the concert and also do demonstrations and get audience members involved in the show.
For the performance, Homzy has written an original piece called Tap This Tree. Homzy said he was inspired by the natural environment of Vancouver Island and also the history of tap dancing, which he said he feels is like a tapestry.
“They are going to dance to some of the music that I’ve written and arranged for my band … I wanted to make something very accessible. It’s not a complex piece and it goes to different rhythms,” said Homzy. “I just sat down and wrote a piece with the tap dancers in mind.”
While Homzy said he composes a lot of music, usually for NOLA NightHawks he does arrangements of songs because of the band’s focus on New Orleans.
Homzy, who is also president of the Nanaimo International Jazz Festival Association, said the organization is still finalizing details about the inaugural jazz festival to be held in September.
“We feel that it’s important to have a headliner come from New Orleans, the birthplace of jazz,” said Homzy.
Homzy said more details about the jazz festival’s lineup will be released in the coming months.
For more information, visit www.nanaimojazzfest.ca.