If you want to see Savion Glover’s face, look at this picture. Because onstage, the tap virtuoso makes a point of turning his back to the audience, especially when he chants into the strategically placed microphone, which is set against a backdrop studded with fiber-optic stars.
The high point of his new “SoLE PoWER” may well be the stretch when he commands the crew to turn off all the lights except those stars. Glover knows that tap dancing is first and foremost music, and that the audience needs to listen. Sitting in the dark, we absorb the depth and complexity of the sounds his feet make as they crash onto amplified platforms. A drum’s tattoo, a galloping horse and a barrage of structured noise fill the black space.
When the lights come up, we see a teenage boy’s bedroom, decked with posters of his dance heroes and big stereo speakers, the playlist somewhere between a sci-fi blockbuster movie and a video game.
Glover’s writing music as well as choreographing; portentous electronic sound surges alongside the clatter of his taps.
A working artist since he was 11, Glover is now in his 30s and running the show. Manifesting the adolescence he missed the first time around, he fills the stage with sexy dames and strides like a duke in a fantasy kingdom, wearing a vinyl suit that displays his bare chest, producing what amounts to a music video. He calls his current ensemble GALxc9, supplemented with members of the DiVA Patrol: Tap Amazons Robyn Watson (in gold leggings) and Samantha Berger (in laddered tights) strut in high-heeled shoes.
“SoLE PoWER,” still evolving, will tighten up over its three-week run. But the crew onstage is already having a good time.