Radcliffe on the Road

CANCELED: Ayodele Casel: Diary of a Tap Dancer

Photo by Michael HigginsPhoto by Michael Higgins

Due to the rapidly evolving COVID-19 situation, we have regrettably decided to cancel this public program. We do not take these decisions lightly, but the health and well-being of our community must come first and we are acting in accordance with the most recent Harvard University guidance.


A special Radcliffe on the Road performance and discussion based on the Institute’s 2019–2020 Julia S. Phelps Annual Lecture in the Arts and Humanities


Hailed by the legendary hoofer Gregory Hines as “one of the top young tap dancers in the world” and by the New York Times as “a tap dancer of unquestionable radiance,” Ayodele Casel is an internationally sought-after artist and a powerful voice for the art form.

In residence at Radcliffe as the 2019–2020 Frances B. Cashin Fellow, Casel is working on Diary of a Tap Dancer, a new theatrical work positioning tap dance as its driving narrative force. This project aims to create a richer and more accurate picture of the art form by centering the voices of its too-often unnamed women practitioners within a broader historical context.

Diary explores the experiences of hoofers past and present with stories illuminating the struggle and joy of expression, the evolution of jazz music, gender inequality, and the personally and culturally devastating implications of sidelining women of color. It begs the critical question: how do we maintain the legacy of an art form if its historical and social contexts are not inclusive?

Reception: 6 PM
Program: 7 PM