The sexy tap dance ensemble takes on Beyonce and more.
Chloé Arnold's Syncopated Ladies gained national attention after being featured on So You Think You Can Dance this summer, but this crew of badass tap dancers has been rocking the globe for long before that. The ladies have worked with all sorts of musical artists, including soul sister Beyoncé, and this year have joined with the CUNY Dance Initiative to put on a concert at the Gerald Lynch Theater at John Jay College. And wow, do these strutting sisters know how to dance.
The tap dance of Chloé Arnold and her Syncopated Ladies is neither the stale 1920s style of Broadway tap nor the newer form of rhythm tap, focused more on the sounds made than the actual dancing. Instead, these ladies have a sexy, sassy style all their own, a fusion of tap and hip hop with a heavy Beyoncé influence. The "Live in NYC" concert featured a series of strong, empowering music tracks, from Katy Perry's "Roar" to Beyoncé's feminist anthem "Flawless."
Their performance alternated dance numbers with monologues from the Ladies about their time before the group, featuring stories of their mothers or past loves or how they began to dance, emphasizing what being a Syncopated Lady means to them. The show also used projected video throughout, either to accompany the performances—such as the music videos for some of their numbers being played behind the live dancers—or as interludes, including a comedic vignette of the struggles of being a female tap dancer and a video of the youth workshops the group does across the country.
Ultimately, the highlight of this concert was not the Ladies' impeccable technical skills but the personality that came through in each dance. Favorite numbers included powerhouse trio performance "Rolling in the Deep," energetic and fun "Run the World" and sexy Justin Timberlake-inspired "My Love." There were also a few exciting a cappella pieces performed along with talented percussionist/Musical Director Choclatt Jared, proving that these women are accomplished musicians as well.
Chloé's final monologue, alternating speech and phrases of tap dance as she showed the audience her vision for the Syncopated Ladies, was the perfect culmination of everything the group is and aspires to be. While each dancer is a talent in her own right, Chloé's presence and dedication shines through every second she is on stage, whether the spotlight is on her or not. We can only hope that the Syncopated Ladies continue to grow and to rock out, because these dancers have plenty more left to do.
For a glimpse into what Chloé Arnold's Syncopated Ladies are like on stage, check out their video of "Flawless."
This article was previously published on CHARGED.fm.