The Cobbler Rap (2012)

The Cobbler Rap (2012)

Created by Ann Marie DeAngelo 

Reviews below


Blog info by Ann Marie, with photos and video below:


Capezio 125th Anniversary:  The Cobbler Rap

Choreography: Ann Marie DeAngelo 
Music by Marty Beller
Lyrics by Lloyd G. Miller
Performed by Dax Valdes


Part One

The Rap:  Alegria, Bounce, Cartier Williams, Kiira Schmidt, Mark Stuart and Jaime Verazin, and Marty Beller on "shoe-last drums"

Part Two

The Ballerina & The Cobbler: Nicole Graniero*, Craig Salstein*, and Daniel Ulbricht**

(* of American Ballet Theater; ** of New York City Ballet)

"In a salute to the dance cobbler and years of hand-crafting shoes for dancers, I have created a fun piece that served as a thread for Capezio’s 125th Anniversary Celebration".  I started writing the text myself but then brought in the talented Lloyd G. Miller (son of legendary ballerina Cynthia Gregory) to write the lyrics.  The Cobbler Rap was in two parts, and was also a thread for the entire show.  Part One - The Rap. introduces different dance shoes; Part Two: The Ballerina and The Cobbler,  a more intimate story about a pointe shoe fantasizing that he meets the ballerina he makes pointe shoes for (a "maker" is responsible for the "box" of the pointe shoe, the most critical part that supports and enables pointe work).  I never had the opportunity to meet my maker, and my livelihood was totally dependent on him! 

My challenge in having to work in a fragmented way to put this type of show and piece together was to know I would never see it until the performance - would the concept work?

Watch a video of the piece with photos and lyrics below:

World Cub All Stars


The World Cup All Stars were the introduction to The Cobbler Rap with their amazing flips and tosses - I always love to include these "champs" who with great skill add a lot of spunk!
Metal dance shoe-last
Marty Beller



His dance-cobbler drum-set


Composer Marty Beller (drummer/Grammy Award winner with They Might Be Giants) played on a non-traditional drum-set made out of real things that dance-cobblers make dance shoes on. I went out to the Capezio factory one day, and got a great tour from Paul Plesh on how pointe shoes are made, but gathered the items above that then Marty so creatively played on.


Dax Valdes with Bounce and Marty Beller (center)

Part One:  The Rap 

Shoes, Shoes, Shoes, Shoes.... 
Its a story ‘bout shoes....on your feet
Its a story ‘bout shoes....and the people you meet
Its a story ‘bout this shoe, that shoe, those shoes and these
Your shoe, my shoe, any shoe you need.....Shoes
And dancing feet                                                   



Dax Valdes, Bounce, Marty Beller (upstage)
In the days of long ago 
When the pointe shoe first was seen
He who made these one-use beauties
Called them his “flying machine”
with Nicole Graniero                  
with Cartier Williams




The solid tap shoe, wrought   with hammer and nail 
Gives one wings, upon which to sail
A blur of motion, hard and fast
A tap shoe’s gotta be built to last


with Kiira Schmidt
Kiira (Marty upstage)      
They might be slip ons or oxfords
Might be rubber or suede
Watching her use those jazz shoes well
You know they're Capezio made...
with Mark Stuart and Jaime Verazin


In a crowd-o-couples, young ‘n fairThe ballroom shoe slices through the air
To music now tender, now brash, now sweet
This shoe might sweep you off your feet
The hip hop dancer uses just her sneakers
But that don't make her style weaker
With supa-fly kicks strapped to her feet
She's all set to rock to the beat                    


Bounce (Ephrat Aserie)



What NO Shoes?



Alegria (Craig upstage fixing a pointe shoe)      









Maker 17 makes 1,000 pointe shoes a year for a girl he’s never met.
She wears pointe shoes by Maker 17, an intimate duet
Part Two:  The Cobbler and The Ballerina
Dax with Nicole (ballerina) and Craig (dance cobbler)

                                                      The Dance Cobbler begins his fantasy....


Her partner, Daniel takes her away....



Nicole and Daniel




Daniel & Nicole
Daniel, Nicole on Craig's back...    




Nicole & Craig
























At the end of the rehearsal, the balerina leaves with her partner, the dance-cobbler ends alone on stage, still imagining.






Transition:  The Cobbler Rap "shoe" thread for the evening: 

Mr. Wiggles, an original - innovator of dance and rhyme
Back then his shoes were Ghettomade,
Let’s go back in time....
Mr. Wiggles telling his story, Crazy Legs upstage - Rock Steady Crew original        



Industrial Rhythm with Rock Steady Crew    



Cartier Williams


 Click or clank
 Slam or slide
 The tap shoe guarantees
 A wild ride...


Continuing the "shoe thread"

Dax as Zac:

So....tell me something about your shoes...


Front: Jamie/Nicole/Bounce kneeling; Back Cartier/Craig/Kiira  



A take off form "A Chorus Line" but here, dancers talked about their dance shoes - from the different style backgrounds....


Ann Marie in rehearsal wondering if the "shoe" concept would work...              




Project Gallery: 
Dax Valdes, Bounce, Marty Beller upstage
Nicole Graniero
Dax with Kiira Schmidt
Dax and Bounce with Alegria
Dax with Bounce
Nicole Graniero and Craig Salstien