Born: July 19, 1939– Tommy Tune is one of the country’s most prolific tap dancer/director/choreographer and is celebrating his golden decade on the great American stage.

Early Life

Thomas James “Tommy” Tune was born in Wichita Falls, Texas to to oil rig worker, horse trainer, and restaurateur Jim Tune and Eva Mae Clark. He studied dance under Patsy Swayze in Houston. He also studied dance with Kit Andree in Boulder, Colorado. He went on to earn his BFA in Drama from the University of Texas at Austin 1962 and his MFA in Directing from the University of Houston. Tune later moved to New York to start his career.

Prolific Career

A native Texan, Mr. Tune began his career as a dancer in the Broadway shows Baker Street, A Joyful Noise and How Now Dow Jones. He has received Tony Awards for The Will Rogers Follies (Direction and Choreography), Grand Hotel (Direction and Choreography), My One and Only (Actor in a Musical and Choreography) Nine (Direction), A Day in Hollywood/A Night in the Ukraine(Choreography) and Seesaw (Featured Actor in a Musical). Tune received two Tony nominations (Direction and Choreography) for The Best Little Whorehouse In Texas. Tommy has been invited to sing and dance for three United States Presidents, the Queen of England and the Royal Family of Monaco. On television, Tune was a recurring guest star and assistant choreographer from 1969–70 on The Dean Martin Show and its summer replacement series. He also briefly appeared on Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood in 1988. Film credits include Hello Dolly, The Boy Friend, and Mimi Bluette…fiore del mio giardino, and in 1999, he made his Las Vegas debut as the star of EFX at the MGM Grand Hotel.  In addition to touring with Chita Rivera in Chita & Tune, Tommy is also touring the country in his one-man show, Tommy Tune Tonight!

Trademarks

At 6 foot 7, Tune is known equally for his height and his tap- dancing skills. Long-legged, and extremely musical and lyrical, round out Tune's unique talents. He is best known in the tap community as being possibly the tallest tap dancer to grace the stage. Throughout the 1960s, he performed his one-man tap show set to rock music, becoming one of the first tap dancers to break with the jazz tradition. Continuing on Broadway, his choreography is known for being marvelously inventive with tap dancing.

Awards

He has received 10 Tony Awards, which includes the 2015 Tony for Life Achievement in the Theatre and the only person in theatrical history to win in 4 different categories and to win the same 2 Tony Awards two years in a row. Tommy has also received The National Medal of Arts, 8 Drama Desk Awards, 2 Obie Awards, 3 Astaire Awards, and multiple Lifetime Achievement. Tune is the recipient of the National Medal of Arts, the highest honor for artistic achievement given by the President of the United States. He has been honored with his own star on the legendary Hollywood Walk of Fame and was inducted into the Theater Hall of Fame by Gwen Verdon. In 2009 the New York Landmarks Conservancy designated Mr. Tune as a Living Landmark. In early 2015 Tune received rave reviews for his tap dancing and singing role in the Encores! production of Lady, Be Good! at New York City Center. http://memory.loc.gov/diglib/ihas/loc.music.tdabio.180/def ault.html https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tommy_Tune http://www.tommytune.com/biography/
master artist
Artist of the Month
We feel it is important for all students to gain an appreciation and understanding of the history of other performing artists who came before them. Learning about a new artist each month—whether it is a composer, dancer, visual artist, singer or musician—helps each Time to Shine student understand more fully the context of their arts learning experience. Each month’s artist will be selected by a faculty member and the artist’s work will be incorporated into all classes at The Center.

Tommy Tune

DANCER/CHOREOGRAPHER/DIRECTOR
Born: July 19, 1939– Tommy Tune is one of the country’s most prolific tap dancer/director/choreographer and is celebrating his golden decade on the great American stage.

Early Life

Thomas James “Tommy” Tune was born in Wichita Falls, Texas to to oil rig worker, horse trainer, and restaurateur Jim Tune and Eva Mae Clark. He studied dance under Patsy Swayze in Houston. He also studied dance with Kit Andree in Boulder, Colorado. He went on to earn his BFA in Drama from the University of Texas at Austin 1962 and his MFA in Directing from the University of Houston. Tune later moved to New York to start his career.

Prolific Career

A native Texan, Mr. Tune began his career as a dancer in the Broadway shows Baker Street, A Joyful Noise and How Now Dow Jones. He has received Tony Awards for The Will Rogers Follies (Direction and Choreography), Grand Hotel (Direction and Choreography), My One and Only (Actor in a Musical and Choreography) Nine (Direction), A Day in Hollywood/A Night in the Ukraine(Choreography) and Seesaw (Featured Actor in a Musical). Tune received two Tony nominations (Direction and Choreography) for The Best Little Whorehouse In Texas. Tommy has been invited to sing and dance for three United States Presidents, the Queen of England and the Royal Family of Monaco. On television, Tune was a recurring guest star and assistant choreographer from 1969–70 on The Dean Martin Show and its summer replacement series. He also briefly appeared on Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood in 1988. Film credits include Hello Dolly, The Boy Friend, and Mimi Bluette…fiore del mio giardino, and in 1999, he made his Las Vegas debut as the star of EFX at the MGM Grand Hotel.  In addition to touring with Chita Rivera in Chita & Tune, Tommy is also touring the country in his one- man show, Tommy Tune Tonight!

Trademarks

At 6 foot 7, Tune is known equally for his height and his tap-dancing skills. Long-legged, and extremely musical and lyrical, round out Tune's unique talents. He is best known in the tap community as being possibly the tallest tap dancer to grace the stage. Throughout the 1960s, he performed his one- man tap show set to rock music, becoming one of the first tap dancers to break with the jazz tradition. Continuing on Broadway, his choreography is known for being marvelously inventive with tap dancing.

Awards

He has received 10 Tony Awards, which includes the 2015 Tony for Life Achievement in the Theatre and the only person in theatrical history to win in 4 different categories and to win the same 2 Tony Awards two years in a row. Tommy has also received The National Medal of Arts, 8 Drama Desk Awards, 2 Obie Awards, 3 Astaire Awards, and multiple Lifetime Achievement. Tune is the recipient of the National Medal of Arts, the highest honor for artistic achievement given by the President of the United States. He has been honored with his own star on the legendary Hollywood Walk of Fame and was inducted into the Theater Hall of Fame by Gwen Verdon. In 2009 the New York Landmarks Conservancy designated Mr. Tune as a Living Landmark. In early 2015 Tune received rave reviews for his tap dancing and singing role in the Encores! production of Lady, Be Good! at New York City Center. http://memory.loc.gov/diglib/ihas/loc.music.t dabio.180/default.html https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tommy_Tune http://www.tommytune.com/biography/
Artist of the Month
We feel it is important for all students to gain an appreciation and understanding of the history of other performing artists who came before them. Learning about a new artist each month—whether it is a composer, dancer, visual artist, singer or musician—helps each Time to Shine student understand more fully the context of their arts learning experience. Each month’s artist will be selected by a faculty member and the artist’s work will be incorporated into all classes at The Center.

Tommy Tune

DANCER/CHOREOGRAPHER/DIRECTOR