The Rise of Technology or There's Four of Me!

So yesterday I made an ambitious attempt to replicate myself 3 times through the magic of modern technology, and it worked!  Here's the story:

I was scheduled to teach a production number at one of the studios I work at and all the kids were coming at the same time (as opposed to splitting them into groups and working with one group at a time).  Well I didn't want 3/4 of the kids just sitting doing nothing while I worked with one of the subgroups within the production, so I replicated myself.  The night before I was scheduled to teach I video-taped myself teaching the choreography for three of the groups.  The next day I put three of the groups each in separate rooms with a tv and had them learn the choreography off of the video while I worked with the fourth group "live."  I did have an assistant overseeing my youngest group that was learning from video.  So how did it go?

Splendid!  Worked like a charm!  So in the amount of time it would have taken me to teach one group one section, I taught each of four groups their own section.  Granted it was a ton of work filming and editing the video the night before (didn't get to bed until 5 a.m.).  It was definitely worth it though.  The kids really appreciated having some choreography to learn instead of sitting around watching the other kids work on their sections.  Also with the ability to pause the video when they needed to they could adjust the pace of learning to their needs.  Also, the group I was working with "live' had to leave early, so after they left I was able to hop form room to room to answer questions and give corrections while the kids were learning from the video.  I was sort of like my own assistant.  It was great having that freedom to roam and correct without being tied down to one room.  I felt I could get a lot more done.

Score one for technology!

Rod Howell at


  1. I just wanted you to know that I am a tapper of over 15 years and I got out of it for 5 years. I recently started back and used your videos to update my skills. I have to say, I have taken many workshops and yours are by far well explained and the steps vary using hoofing, traditional and soft shoe. Thanks for the lessons, for the first time in 10 years I am performing solo in a friends show thanks to your material.


  2. T,

    I'm so glad my lessons were helpful to you. Best of luck in your show.



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