Tap Dance Ambassadors of Florida

Tap Dance Ambassadors of Florida

Kayla Cowart

Tap Girl of Florida

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Kayla Cowart is a qualified dancer and passionate tapper whose dream is to become the heart of Florida’s tap dance industry. A professional in creative industry, she is a 21st Century entertainer, dancer and choreographer that is quickly emerging as a leader in Tampa Bay’s performing arts community. In 2015, Kayla adopted the stage name “Tap Girl of Florida”, and created the Florida Tap Dance Project, an initiative to create a vibrant and sustainable tap dance community in the Tampa Bay Region. She is the sponsor of the Rhythm Dolphin Tap Dance Trail and the pioneer of the Tap Dance Ambassadors of Florida a community forum for Florida’s tap dancers to partner, perform, collaborate, and connect.

Locally Kayla has performed in several community theatre projects that includes Ruth Eckerd Hall’s, Marcia P. Hoffman Institute’s Chocolate Nutcracker and the Mahaffey Theater’s production of Chocolate with a Twist and The Family Heritage.

Tap Girl of Florida

Driven by sheer passion, Kayla is extremely motivated by rhythm as she strives to serve as a catalyst for the emergence of Florida’s tap on the national tap dance circuit and the resurgence of tap dance in the performing arts community. At the age of 18, Kayla headed to the “Big Apple” for an open-call audition with “Stomp.” She currently plays two different characters in the New York Cast of this phenomenal musical production. When she is not in St. Petersburg-Clearwater, she resides in Brooklyn.

Morgan Angelillis

Tapped In Incorporated

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Ms. Angelillis founded Tapped In, Inc., a youth/young adult tap performance ensemble, and currently serves as the President and Artistic Director.  Since its inception in September 2008, Tapped In, Inc. has grown to over 10 active members and performs original works throughout Pinellas, Hillsborough, Manatee and Sarasota counties. Ms. Angelillis has been on the staff of Patricia Ann Dance Studios for the last 10 years as an Intermediate/Advance Tap instructor as well as choreographing for the competitive team. In 2005, Morgan’s tap piece "Chair Dance" won the Best Execution for InterFlorida Dance Challenge.

This piece was also chosen as one of eleven dances featured in the 2005 IDC Florida promotional video.  In 2008, at Dance America Florida her tap duet "All In" was chosen to perform in Disney World’s Tomorrowland. Most recently her piece “Buckjump” was chosen to perform at Hollywood Studios in connection with Dance America Florida in 2012. Ms. Angelillis also serves as the Tampa representative for the InterFlorida Tap Association.

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Ruth Ann Martin

Truth Tap Company

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Ruth Martin is a 22 year old tap dancer from Seminole, Florida. She has been dancing since the age of three and has been tap dancing for over 18 years. As a choreographer, she has been teaching at Jeanne Lynn Dance Studio is Saint Petersburg, Florida since 2012. Ruth started Truth Tap Company in 2014 right before she moved to NYC. In New York she joined Chloe Arnold’s Apartment 33 tap company, and Anthony LoCascio’s Taplife company and trained with them for about a year before moving back to grow her company. With everyone she’s trained with throughout conventions and workshops such as Tap Kids, Tap into the network, Syncopate, Slide, Tampa Bay Tap Fest and many more, she’s learned a lot about the ever-changing art of tap. She plans on choreographing and dancing and eventually opening up a studio of her own one day. 

Ashlyn Bolton

Tampa Bay Taps

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Ashlyn Bolton is the new Director and Owner of Tampa Bay Taps - Center for Tap Dance and it’s performance company, The Rhythm and Sole Tap Ensemble. Instructor, Choreographer, Dancer: Ashlyn teaches Ballet, Tap, Hip-hop, Modern, and Jazz across the Tampa area.  She was named Best Local Dancer in Creative Loafing’s 2017 Best of the Bay; has trained with the Radio City Rockettes through their invited intensive program; has performed in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade multiple times; had a role in "Contest: The Movie;" was the first place winner of the Dare to Dream Scholarship awarded by the Marcia P. Hoffman Institute at Ruth Eckerd Hall; and is an intern for Chloe and Maud Arnold during their D.C. Tap Fest.

Ashlyn started training with the Patel Conservatory at the age of 7 and grew up in Patel’s Dance, Music, and Theater programs. Along with taking Tap and Jazz classes at Ruth Eckerd Hall through High School. Ashlyn has been accepted into numerous dance training programs; such as American Ballet Theater’s Summer Intensive, Tap Kids, The Intensive, and Tap City. Throughout this season of Ashlyn’s first year of directing, the Ensemble has performed at Disney Springs, Hard Rock Hotel at Universal Studios, Dancing For Diabetes in Orlando, the Florida Strawberry Festival, and numerous other local shows. Ashlyn plans to continue to grow the knowledge of tap dance in the Tampa area and to keep wowing audiences around the world with the Ensemble’s love of the dance and quick feet!

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Raymond Bennett

Board Member

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Raymond Bennett is a passionate tap dancer that attended New World School of the Arts in Miami; and the Ailey School in New York City. After his completion of the Fellowship program at the Ailey School, he performed in the Broadway production of 'The Wiz' at New York City Center. Additionally, he performed for four years with the Radio City Rockettes in the Christmas Spectacular. Locally Raymond has participated in several community theatre projects that includes Ruth Eckerd Hall’s, Marcia P. Hoffman Institute’s Chocolate Nutcracker and the Mahaffey Theater’s production of Chocolate with a Twist. He is also an alumni of the Dundu Dole Urban African Ballet.

Aubrey Cheek

Board Member

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Aubrey Cheek is a performer, teacher, and choreographer based in NYC. This spring, Aubrey is performing in 42nd Street at the Fireside Theatre in Wisconsin. Last December, she performed in the 29th Annual Gypsy of the Year Competition at The New Amsterdam Theatre benefitting Broadway Cares/Equity Fights Aids. Aubrey was one of 25 dancers from around the world accepted into the prestigious Jacob’s Pillow Tap Program during the summer of 2017, directed by Michelle Dorrance and Dormeshia Sumbry-Edwards. She was part of the Pre-Production workshop of Drury Lane Theatre’s 42nd Street, choreographed by Jared Grimes and directed by Michael Heitzman.

 

Aubrey has presented choreography in the NYC Choreographer’s Forum, an event that celebrates prominent up and coming choreographers. She has taught at several studios in New York, New Jersey, and Florida and has guest taught at various studios around the country. Her choreography for young dancers has won numerous awards at competitions. Aubrey continues to train in all styles of dance at Steps on Broadway and Broadway Dance Center, where she has also assisted. She graduated summa cum laude from Pace University with a degree in Arts and Entertainment Management.