THE JAZZ TAP ENSEMBLE is dedicated to those two great American traditions - tap dancing and jazz music. Hailed as leaders in the renaissance of tap, the Ensemble brings together the virtuosic talents of its several dancers and musicians in a spirited display of creativity and spontaneity.  Under the artistic direction of dancer/choreographer, Lynn Dally, this unique company is celebrating its 25th year of bringing original tap dance to the concert stage. JTE has been honored to present and work with such well-known tap masters as Gregory Hines, Jimmy Slyde, Dianne Walker, Brenda Bufalino, Savion Glover, and late greats Charles "Honi" Coles, Steve Condos, Eddie Brown, and Harold Nicholas. Based in Los Angeles, JTE has appeared in major concert halls nationally and internationally including the Kennedy Center, the Smithsonian, London's Riverside Theatre, Paris' Theatre de la Ville, and Lyon's Maison de la Danse, as well as Jacob's Pillow, Spoleto USA and major tap festivals in New York, Boulder/Denver, Portland, Houston, Boston, and San Francisco as well as USIA tours of Southeast Asia and Latin America. Highlights include Gregory Hines' Evening of Tap at Carnegie Hall, the Apollo Theatre in Harlem, Madrid's Festival en Danza and Lyon's 4th Biennale, An American Story. T.V. and film credits include JTE Live in Concert, JTE with Honi Coles, and Christian Blackwood's award winning film Tapdancin'.

LYNN DALLY (Artistic Director, dancer/choreographer) is a co-founder of the Jazz Tap Ensemble (1979) and Artistic Director for the past decade. Combining her extensive experience in modern dance with her first love, tap, she created new possibilities for the field through her choreography and performance in Jazz Tap Ensemble. She has appeared often with tap legends Honi Coles, Eddie Brown, the Nicholas Brothers, Steve Condos, Jimmy Slyde, and Gregory Hines. She has received multiple choreographic grants from The National Endowment for the Arts and most recently was awarded the prestigious Irvine Fellowship in Dance 2000 and the Guggenheim Fellowship 2001. Her long list of commissions includes Ruby My Dear for Seattle's Pacific Northwest Ballet, The Moment for ETC/ Chicago Human Rhythm Project, Tribute : A Valentine to Tap Dance in the Movies for the Palm Beach Festival. She has appeared on national television with the Ensemble and in the award winning film Tapdancin! Dally is on the faculty of UCLA’s Department of World Arts and Cultures and teaches and performs internationally. She appeared in the original production of Tap Divas at New York Tap City Festival 2001 and was honored in Tap City’s 2002 Masters & Mentors.

SAM WEBER Sam Weber has gained an international reputation as a performing artist and is in demand internationally as a performer, master teacher, and choreographer. He has appeared with such tap luminaries as Charles “Honi” Coles, Jimmy Slyde, Steve Condos, Gregory Hines, Savion Glover and the Nicholas Brothers. Mr Weber is one of the few tap dancers in the world currently performing Morton Gould’s Tap Dance Concerto and was the first dancer to receive a “Bessie,” presented in recognition of outstanding creative achievement. He has been a principal dancer and choreographer with the Jazz Tap Ensemble since 1986 and has received international acclaim touring with company. His choreographic credits include work for solo artists in the U.S. and abroad and ensemble work for “Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood,” the North Carolina Youth Tap Ensemble, Tap Explosion, Musical Tap Company Freiburg, the Heidelberg Tap Company, Tap House Wuerzeburg and, of course, the Jazz Tap Ensemble. In October 1998, Mr. Weber performed the world premiere of “Kontralog,” a composition of two tap dancers and piano. The work was dedicated to Mr. Weber by composer/tap dancer Andreas Danel and was premiered in Freiburg, Germany. Most recently, Mr. Weber has starred in the Berman short film “Zwei Im Frack,” which premiered on the German television program “ARTE” in May of this year.

CHANNING COOK HOLMES studied with dancer/choreographer Alfred Desio, performed with Kids Tap L.A, in the Barcelona, Spain Festival, received a Brody Grant to study with the renowned Fayard Nicholas, and was awarded the 2002 Princess Grace Award for artistic excellence. Channing joined Jazz Tap Ensemble in 1997 and toured for one year before joining the European cast of Riverdance. That led to a full year on Broadway in Riverdance. Film credits include Bojangles with Gregory Hines for Showtime and Martin Scorcese’s Gangs of New York. . Channing returned to LA and the concert stage with Jazz Tap Ensemble in the Summer of 2002, performing on tour, in LA, and at New York’s Joyce Theater.

DERICK K. GRANT began tapping 26 years ago in Boston with tap master Dianne Walker, his aunt Andrea Major, and later in LA with Paul Kennedy. He joined JTE in ‘91 and won the coveted Princess Grace Award for Emerging Artists. He toured the US., Central America, and Southeast Asia with JTE from 1991-1995. In September ’95 Grant Grant was invited to be an original cast member and Dance Captain for Broadway’s Bring In ‘da Noise, Bring In ‘da Funk. Later, he recreated Savion Glover’s choreography and starred in the role of ‘da beat for the national tour, for which he received the Helen Hayes Award and the LA Ovation Award. Currently based in New York, Derick was welcomed back into the JTE family in the 2002 season and continues with these Holiday Festival classes at Dance Arts and live performances on KCET and at the Jazz Bakery.

DORMESHIA SUMBRY-EDWARDS started dancing before most children even walk. By the age of 3 she was under the instruction of Paul and Arlene Kennedy in Los Angeles and later went on to perform in Rome, Italy at the Tip Tap Festival. From there she made her debut on Broadway at the age of 12 in the musical Black and Blue with Savion Glover. After graduating from L.A. County Performing Arts High School, Dormeshia was invited to join Jazz Tap Ensemble. She toured with the company as soloist in New York, Hong Kong, Southeast Asia, Alaska, and across America. Later, she became a featured principal in the European tour of Black and Blue. In 1999, Dormeshia joined the cast of Bring In ‘Da Noise, Bring In ‘Da Funk on Broadway, making her the first female performer in the show. She then toured Europe in the singing-dancing revue, Wild Women Blues. “ Most recently she completed a one year tour of America and Japan with Savion Glover in Noise/Funk. Her film credits include dancing in Gregory Hines’ “Tap” and Spike Lee’s “Bamboozled” where she lent her talent as Assistant Choreographer.

BECKY TWITCHELL came to JTE from Seattle where she studied with Ray Bussey, Cheryl Johnson, Anthony Peters and in festivals with Cholly Atkins, Buster Brown, and Dianne Walker. Becky has appeared as a soloist in Santa Barbara and Seattle tap festivals. In L.A. she has performed at Sushi On Tap, the Jazz Bakery, and the Ford Theater. In February '97, Becky made her debut with the Ensemble at the Joyce Theatre, NYC. For the past two seasons, Becky has been the primary teacher for The Caravan Project.

JERRY KALAF (Music Director/Drums) is a graduate of the Berklee College of Music where he studied with America's great jazz artists. His jazz credits include performances and tours with Eddie Harris, Gary Burton, Gary Foster, Frank Strazzeri, Bill Mays, Bill Perkins, Jimmy Cleveland, and Major Holley. Kalaf joined JTE in 1984, contributing original compositions and a new sound for tap. As JTE’s musical director he has toured Europe, Asia, South America, and the United States. He has accompanied Gregory Hines at the Apollo Theater and in concert at Carnegie Hall. It was as a member of JTE that Kalaf's orchestration of Bach’s Italian Concerto was premiered in Lyon, France by the National Orchestra of France. He has received several for composition including Meet The Composer/ California. Kalaf ‘s two recent CD’s Trio Music and Noche, distributed by Sea Breeze Jazz feature his original compositions. Jerry frequently teaches music and jazz improvisation for tap dancers in JTE and other national tap festivals.