TapBassDrums is a high-energy confluence of rhythm and sound that engages artists and audiences with familiar, uncharted and nuanced expressions about what was, is, and may be.
With music by Lisa LaTouche (tap artist), Jon McCaslin (jazz drummer), Jodi Proznick (double bassist) and digital screen projections by Jae Sterling and Priya Ramesh (Contra) TapBassDrums builds towards a rhythmically dynamic and visually exciting environment augmented by site specific lighting, staging and sound designs.
By exploring the worlds of rhythm and sound along with compelling visuals components, the cultural, historical, contemporary and futuristic pathways and intersections of complimentary art forms and these three dynamic artists are explored on stage.
This performance will celebrate, reflect upon, challenge and project on the perspectives and relationships between the foundations of jazz music and tap dancing — where the audience will witness the artists build, together, a compelling synergy of rhythm and imagination
Lisa La Touche (New York) · Creator/Performer
As a proud Canadian and New Yorker, Lisa’s credits include being an original cast member in Broadway’s Shuffle Along, choreographed by Savion Glover and Directed by George C. Wolfe, where she received both the Fred Astaire Award and the Actor’s Equity Award for Outstanding Broadway Chorus. She is also currently a Dora Award nominee for her performance, choreography and co-direction of the Tap Dance Legacy Concert c/o dance Immersion and Canadian Stage with Travis Knights.
Her TV credits include the 70th Annual Tony Awards and Amazon’s Original “Z, The beginning of everything”. Previous highlights have also included touring with the Savion Glover production, Stepz, performing with Dormeshia Sumbry at Harlem’s legendary Cotton Club as well as performing with both New York's Off-Broadway and the North American touring casts of STOMP.
Since 2010 she has run her own performance company Tap Phonics and has been commissioned to present for organizations such as The Brooklyn Museum, 92Y, Gibney Dance and Fall For Dance North. As an educator and Professor she is on faculty at PACE University and the University of Calgary and has taught at NYU, The School of Jacob’s Pillow, Decidedly Jazz Danceworks, Rosie’s Theater Kids and member of the creative council for the American Tap Dance Foundation.
Her recent endeavor includes co-curating the Tap Dance Legacy Series along with Travis Knights in partnership with dance Immersion providing the local black community free access to their cultural history.
She also has written and directed her debut documentary film TRAX encompassing her journey back to Alberta while discovering important local black history. Above all, her proudest achievement greatest inspiration, is the gift of being a mom. For further info please visit www.lisalatouche.com.
Jon McCaslin · Creator/Performer
Recognized as one of Western Canada’s leading jazz drummers and educators, Jon McCaslin brings excitement and his passion for the jazz tradition and its future to the bandstand and to the classroom.
Raised in Regina, Saskatchewan Jon began playing the drums at the tender age of nine while progressing through the Regina Lions Junior Band and award winning music program at his high school, Campbell Collegiate, soon developing a passion for playing the drums and jazz.
Jon's interest in music led him to enroll in the Jazz Studies program at McGill University, graduating with distinction in 1999. While at McGill, Jon had the opportunity to study with some of the finest jazz educators in the country including Gordon Foote, Kevin Dean, Jan Jarcyzk, Joe Sullivan, Remi Bolduc, Chris McCann, Andre White, Michel Lambert and Dave Laing.
He first attended the Banff Centre for the Arts in 1997, where he performed with Canadian jazz greats Hugh Fraser, Don Thompson and Kenny Wheeler. In the spring of 2002 McCaslin completed his Master's in Jazz Studies at McGill University where he studied jazz drumming, improvisation and composition.
In 2012 he released his album Sunalta on the Cellar Live jazz record label featuring Brad Turner, Phil Dwyer, Tilden Webb and Jodi Proznick. This music was nominated in 2013 for the Western Canadian Music Awards in the “Best Jazz Recording” category.
As a busy sideman, he has also performed with such internationally recognized artists as Mulgrew Miller, Peter Bernstein, Ralph Bowen, Hendrik Meurkens, Sean Jones, PJ Perry, Charlie Biddle, Hadley Caliman, Kelly Jefferson, Ian McDougall, Jeff Johnston, Lorraine Desmerais, Steve Amirault, Hugh Fraser, Chucho Valdes, Uri Caine, Peter Apfelbaum, Wycliffe Gordon, Terell Stafford, Dick Oatts, Luis Bonilla, Linda Oh, Harold Mabern and Pat LaBarbera.
Dr. McCaslin completed his Doctorate in Jazz Studies through the University of Toronto in 2015, researching the conceptualization of contemporary melodic jazz drumming.
Since 2009 he has authored Four on the Floor www.jonmccaslinjazzdrummer.blogspot.com, one of the world’s most recognized on-line jazz drumming blogs.
He is currently based in Calgary where he maintains a busy performing and teaching schedule across Canada.
Jodi Proznick (Vancouver) · Performer
Jodi Proznick is a Canadian jazz bassist, composer, educator and producer. In 2019, she was named Jazz Artist of the Year at the Western Canadian Music Awards and has been nominated for two Juno Awards (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Juno_Award). She was also a recipient of the British Columbia Lieutenant Governor's Arts and Music Awards in 2022.
Jodi Proznick has earned a reputation as one of Canada’s finest jazz artists. She has won numerous National Jazz Awards, including Bassist of the Year in ’08 and ’09. Her group, the Jodi Proznick Quartet, was awarded the Acoustic Group of the Year and Album of the Year in ‘08 and the Galaxie Rising Star at the Vancouver International Jazz Festival in ‘04.
In addition to leading her own group, Jodi has performed with many of Canada’s top jazz musicians, including PJ Perry, Don Thompson, Kirk MacDonald, Guido Basso, Oliver Gannon, Dee Daniels, Phil Dwyer, and Laila Biali. She is regularly in demand to perform and record with visiting jazz artists including Michael Bublé, Byron Stripling, Michael Feinstein, David “Fathead” Newman, Bucky Pizzarelli, Ed Thigpen, Jeff Hamilton, Peter Bernstein, Charles McPherson,
Seamus Blake, George Coleman, Sheila Jordan, Mark Murphy, Harold Mabern, Eric Alexander, Jim Rotundi, Eddie Daniels, Jeff Hamilton and Lewis Nash.
In addition to recording her own Juno-nominated CD as a leader, Jodi has been featured on over 40 recordings as a side person.
Jodi began playing bass at the age of 13 under the direction of her father David, an award-winning music educator. In ‘93, Jodi received the General Motors Award of Excellence, establishing her as one of the top young musicians at Musicfest Canada, and then went on to receive a scholarship to study bass at McGill University in Montreal. After graduating, Jodi played with many of the top musicians in Montreal, including Juno winners Christine Jensen and Renee Lee as well as Montreal greats Andre White and Greg Clayton. She was awarded the IAJE Sisters in Jazz award in ‘98 as one of the best up-and-coming female jazz musicians.
Jodi moved to Vancouver in ‘00, where she now lives with her husband and collaborator, pianist Tilden Webb, and young son Tristan. Her personal highlights include opening for Oscar Peterson in 2004, performing as a featured soloist with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, and recording numerous times for CBC Radio. Another highlight in Jodi’s career was when she was asked to be the featured bassist in the 2010 Vancouver Olympic Winter Games’ closing ceremonies and soundtrack.
Jodi’s deep passion for education lead her to pursue a Masters Degree in Education at Simon Fraser University. She was a faculty member at Kwantlen Polytechnic University (2012-2020) and Capilano University (2003-2013) where she taught improvisation, jazz theory, jazz history, popular music history, rudiments, jazz combo and bass lessons. She is currently the Department Head of the Jazz Program, Artistic Director of the Summer Jazz Workshop and Sister Jazz Day at the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra School of Music where she teaches jazz bass, combo, jazz history and jazz theory. She has been a guest adjudicator and clinician at many festivals, colleges, universities, and conferences across Canada.
Her current project is Co-Artistic Director of The Ostara Project with pianist/composer Amanda Tosoff.
As well as an extensive background as a jazz educator, Jodi was involved in teaching early childhood music classes for over 15 years. Her methodology included a combination of Orff, Kodaly, Dalcroze, Montessori and Suzuki philosophies of music education. Her areas of interest include arts-based research, embodied educational practices, attachment, phenomenology and creativity.
She has been described as “… armed with an arsenal of talent sure to develop recognition as one of the finest bassist in the jazz world today” (Ejazznews), “… (playing with) an infectiously in-the-pocket sense of groove” (Cadence Magazine), “… a jazz bassist with great time and a rock-solid sound ” (Katie Malloch, CBC Radio), “ a great player, who plays with intoxicating passion” (RivitingRiff.com), and “a wonderful bassist who really digs in and plays from the heart” (David Fathead Newman – Coda Magazine interview).