The Tap World Loses Jerry Ames


NY Times / Feb 2011


Jerry Ames, a tap dancer and choreographer known for his airy, balletic style and eclectic approach, died on Feb. 7 in Woodbury, N.Y. He was 80 and had lived in Manhattan for many years. He died after a long illness, his nephew, Ned Goldreyer, said.

For decades Mr. Ames performed as a soloist on stages in New York and around the world. From 1976 to the early 1980s he also directed the Jerry Ames Tap Dance Company, one of the first regular troupes devoted exclusively to tap. As a solo dancer Mr. Ames was praised by critics for his silvery lightness of foot and dazzling leaps and turns. His company was known for its ecumenical approach to tap, melding it with waltzes, Irish jigs and Spanish music, among other things.