Please Wait a Moment

Classic Tap Repertoire – The Shim Sham Shimmy

A pair of feet wearing silver and pink tap shoes

Professor: Thelma Goldberg

Tuition: $310 member / $385 non-member

6 Weeks; 1.5 NDEO-Endorsed PDCs

The Shim Sham Shimmy is a classic piece of tap dance repertoire that dates to the 1920s (Vaudeville era). It is the national anthem of tap dancers and is used as the finale in many tap performances throughout the world. This course introduces you to the early history of tap dance, to the history of this classic repertoire, to the steps of the Shim Sham Shimmy, and to the important individuals who created it and have kept it alive for almost 100 years! Teachers learn how to integrate the history of tap into technique and choreography lessons.

Book required:  None


Questions about this Course?  Email

Past Student Testimonials

"The direct focus on one case study was very beneficial for transferring information to my students. I really enjoyed examining multiple faucets of the history of one dance. It made for a deep and rich historical analysis."

"This course was helpful in refreshing myself on Tap technique and on the Shim Sham. I hadn't known much history on Tap before, so that was also extremely helpful and gave me a lot of material to pass on to my students."

"I learned the history of tap dance, and I can pass that on to future generations of tappers. Learning this time-honored traditional step and about the lives of the people who made it famous made me feel connected to the greater tap community. I really liked learning about the vaudeville era. It helped to clarify and firm up techniques and ideas that I was unclear about previously."

"Aside from a very small amount of reading on my own I have never studied tap history. I enjoyed the resources provided by the instructor and the discussion boards. I got to learn about tap history and improve my skills in tap!

"I loved the spirit of tap dancing and also using the mirror via video to demonstrate steps (being able to see front and back). (Pedagogical stuff)

"I gained knowledge of the history, which I believe to be so important to the teaching of this dance. I liked the layout and the weekly assignments. I felt with the pace of the course, I became a better tapper. I really liked the history and the footage."

Professor Bio

Thelma Larkin Goldberg, PhD, founded The Dance Inn (1983), an independent private sector dance studio that serves over 400 students weekly. Dr. Goldberg teaches at dance teacher events and at tap festivals such as the Boston Tap Party. In addition, she mentors future tap dance educators through her work with the American Tap Dance Foundation’s Tap Teacher Training Program. Dr. Goldberg received the 2015 Dr. Michael Shannon Dance Champion Award from the Boston Dance Alliance for “her sustained excellence in teaching and passionate advocacy for the art of tap dancing.” Her research focuses on the experience of tap dance educators in the private sector dance studio; and she shares her large collection of teaching resources that include videos, books, rhythm cards and the Tap into History poster through Thelma's Tap Notes ( Dr. Goldberg recently joined the dance faculty at Dean College in Franklin, MA where she is implementing a syllabus that integrates tap history with technique and choreography lessons.