Mar 11, 2019

Poetry Electric: Shhh…and Beats

Poet Daniel Carlton in collaboration with dancer Alex MacDonald

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Shhhh... and Beats is an ongoing collaboration between poet Daniel Carlton and tap dancer Alex MacDonald. Blending elements of spoken word, tap, and jazz, the work seeks to chronicle the vibrations of NYC and the never-ending quest for quietude. Special guests include bassist Steve Whipple, pianist Jesse Elder, and tap dancers CK Edwards, Liberty Styles, and Naomi Funaki.

Performances by:
Daniel Carlton, Alex MacDonald, Steve Whipple, CK Edwards, Liberty Styles, Naomi Funaki, Sharik Hasan

Headshot of Sharik Hasan

Sharik Hasan is one of the leading pianists and composers of his generation to emerge from India. He spent several years working as a jazz and classical musician in France and the USA while also working in Indian classical musical traditions. He was awarded a scholarship to Berklee College of Music where he was selected to be part of a special honors program, the Berklee Global Jazz Institute, under the tutelage of Danilo Pérez. He has performed at venues all over the world including the Blue Note (New York), Panama Jazz Festival, and Nancy Jazz Festival (France). He tours much of the year internationally with the world famous Postmodern Jukebox as well as his own band MND FLO.

Headshot of ‍Daniel Carlton

Daniel Carlton is a Harlem based actor, playwright, storyteller, poet, teaching artist, and director.

Headshot of Alex MacDonald

Alex MacDonald is a NYC-based tap dancer, teaching artist, and choreographer, whose work has taken him across North America, Europe, Australia, Southeast Asia, and West Africa. He is the original tap soloist for the popular vintage band, Postmodern Jukebox, as well as the passionate hype-man for the Grammy award winning kindie band, Tim and the Space Cadets. For many years, he served as dance captain of Andrew Nemr’s tap company, Cats Paying Dues. As a Fulbright scholar, he received his M.A. in Ethnochoreology from the University of Limerick in Ireland. A patient and intuitive teacher, he is currently on faculty at Steps on Broadway, Alvin Ailey, and Montclair State University.

Headshot of Steve Whipple

Steve Whipple, a native of Tokyo, Japan, is a highly in demand jazz bassist in the New York scene. He has shared the stage with the likes of Gregory Porter, Lady Gaga, Donny McCaslin, JD Allen, Tim Warfield, Donald Harrison, Lew Tabackin, Toshiko Akiyoshi, and Bernard Perdie. He has performed at the Monterey Jazz Festival with the Toshiko Akiyoshi Trio, Jazz à Vienne with Postmodern Jukebox, the Burlington Discover Jazz Festival with Matt Parker Trio, and at Rifflandia with the Xylopholks. His most recent project is Double Bass Double Voice, in partnership with vocalists Nancy Harms and Emily Braden, which released it’s first album in early 2017.

Headshot of C.K. Edwards

C.K. Edwards is an NYC based actor/singer/dancer who got his start all because of tap dance. He has the Gregory Hines of “White Nights” and “Tap” to thank for that. C.K.’s career highlights have mostly been in the world of live musical theater and have taken him all over the country and many parts of the world. You may catch him currently trying to emulate the late Mr. Hines in an NJPAC production of ‘Sophisticated Ladies’ next week. “Thanks you Alex, for including me in this wonderful night of art!”

Headshot of Liberty Styles

Liberty Styles is an emerging tap dancer in New York City with a long-time dedication to percussive dance. After spending her adolescence as as a flamenco dancer in the U.S. and Spain, she has studied tap dance diligently under Derick K Grant, and with Jason Samuels Smith and Dormeshia Sumbry-Edwards. In 2014, she founded the funk band Liberty Zoo, in which she was the lead vocalist and tap dancer. Liberty has toured nationally as a tap dancer in choreographic works by Hillary-Marie Atkinson and Andrew Nemr, as well as with several jazz and blues bands. She teaches in NYC and abroad. In 2018, Liberty founded a monthly tap jam session in Brooklyn called The Spell. She has most recently curated evenings of live jazz music and tap dance at Nublu and ShapeShifter Lab. In February 2019, Liberty Styles released her first album, which features her compositions with live instrumentation, tap dance, and vocal layers that reflect her eclectic musical background.

Headshot of Naomi Funaki

Naomi Funaki is a tap dancer from Tokyo Japan, currently living in New York as an IISP student of Steps on Broadway. She has performed in Caleb Teicher & Company and Dorrance Dance’s second company. She has danced at the first “Tap Family Reunion”, Vail Dance Festival , Fall For Dance (New York City Center), Works & Process (Guggenheim), Tokyo International Tap Dance Festival, and is an alumna of the school at Jacob’s Pillow tap dance program.

Poetry Electric


The Poetry Electric fuses music, movement, sound, and dance with the spoken word and presents artists working in a wide range of styles including beatboxing, jazz and hip-hop theatre. This series has presented over 200 emerging poets from diverse cultural backgrounds.

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