Anthony Morigerato’s Latest News
By Chelsea Thomas of Dance Informa.
Anthony, where are you dancing at the moment?
Currently, I am touring with NUVO Dance Convention on the weekends. I go out and teach and perform every weekend with that organization, which will host events for this season through May. Then I’m also creating a piece for Marymount Manhattan College for their fall main stage performance right now. I’m also traveling and choreographing at numerous studios.
Tell us about the piece you are choreographing for Marymount Manhattan College?
The piece is for the fall main stage concert that they produce in mid-December. It’s contemporary and tap choreography. I was a student there from 2003-2007 and this is my first time working there.
How do you keep up your energy with all your traveling and these other projects?
[Laughs.] Yeah, I guess I am keeping my energy up, but it can be a lot with all the travel! I try to take class when I can in the city and take my Monday mornings to rest as much as I can. That’s my time to recuperate since I pretty much work nonstop the rest of the week. And I’m honestly used to traveling now since I travel so many days out of my year. It’s pretty much my ‘normal’ now.
Are you still working on TV shows as well?
Yes, I did So You Think You Can Dance over the summer and I performed on The Arsenio Hall Show about a month and a half ago, which had just come back on the air. I’m also working on starting my dance company again in January and I’m hoping we will perform in May. Then I’m in the beginning stages of working on a feature-length dance film.
Wow! So, let’s start with the dance film. Tell me a little about that.
It’s really in the beginning stages, but I’m hoping to collaborate with some amazing artists. It’s completely dance driven, there is no dialogue, but it will be a feature-length film. Stacey Tookey will do all the choreography and I’ll be directing it. We’re hoping to go into pre-production on that in the fall of 2014. There will be eight principal roles and probably be an additional 20 or so supporting roles.
What gave you the idea for this dance film?
I’ve actually had the idea for it since 2004. I’ve written several drafts for it through the course of the last nine years. I finally got to the place last year where I realized it might be time. I had just done a guest spot in L.A. with Stacey’s Still Motion Dance Company and we had collaborated on the piece I was in. We have a really good working relationship and I thought this could be something I could do with her. A dance film really needs numerous minds working on it, not just one person. So I let Stacey read the script and she really liked the idea of it. Now we’ve been discussing it and how to move it forward. There is a lot that goes into preparing a film – from finding the right dancers to getting a production crew, so it will probably be some time before it’s a solid reality.
Do you think you will be holding auditions for the film or hand-selecting dancers?
We will definitely be handpicking the main principal dancers but there may be auditions for the fringe dancers. It also depends on where we end up shooting the film too. We are looking at locations in upstate New York and L.A. Maybe even a theater in Kansas.
And how was your time on So You Think You Can Dance this past season?
Well, in years past on So You Think You Can Dance, there have not really been too many opportunities for tap dancers. On occasion they’d have a tap dancer make it into the Top 20, but overall the contestants haven’t been made to perform tap as part of the show. So this year three tappers made it into the Top 20 and I was lucky enough to be asked to choreograph a tap trio for those dancers. Some of the show’s producers had seen me at Stacey’s concert the year before and they called Stacey to get in contact me. So I got to choreograph a number for that episode, which was great!
Then one of the tappers [Aaron Turner] actually made it to the Top 4, which had never before happened on the show, so they decided to have a tap piece as part of the competition, which had never happened. So they paired him up with Melinda Sullivan, who is an incredible professional tap dancer who was formerly on the show herself. They asked me back to choreograph that.
Overall, it was nice that tap had at least somewhat of a showing on this season’s program. It’s been great what the show has done for dance overall, but tap as an American art form should be showcased even more. I’m glad to have had a small part in bringing tap to the show this year.
What is happening with your company, AM Dance Project?
The company will hopefully hold its next concert in early June 2014 in New York. It wound up getting pushed back when I was working with SYTYCD. But now I’m at a place where I want to bring it back. I’m hoping to bring on some top-notch dancers and begin work on it in January. We’re actually going to use the piece I am creating for Marymount Manhattan College, just recapped with professional dancers instead of students.
I hear you are a big fan of the Capezio K360 tap shoe and that it’s your shoe of choice. Why is that?
I have been wearing Capezio K360s since I was 13 years old, when I ordered my first pair. I believe them to be the best tap shoes that a tap dancer could wear because the tap is like no other. No other dance company or provider has mastered the tap like Capezio. I would never dream of changing to another shoe. At this point it’s a part of my life – the shoes and the form is as much a part of my dancing as my movement, providing the right sound and comfort. There are certain pairs of shoes you hold onto longer because of the special kinship with them. For me, tap shoes are very personal and I could never let anyone else wear them – they are my shoes!