art as a human adventure
art in the service of the encounter
Laurent Bortolotti, his journey and philosophy
The philosophy of the jazz é-tap company is inseparable from my personal journey. I came to discover my deep reasons for becoming a performing artist, and wanting to create with other artists, in an empirical way, through a succession of experiences, which came together in the jazz é-tap company.
My name is Laurent Bortolotti, I grew up in the small town of Yverdon-les-Bains, in Switzerland. As a teenager I caught the jazz virus while listening to vinyl LPs. Jazz inspired me to move and dance. One day I saw Fred Astaire on television, and since then the passion for tap dancing has never left me.
Among the tap dance teachers who influenced me the most, are Gilbert and Fabrice
Martin (Lausanne, Switzerland), Barbara
Duffy (New York, USA), Rhythm Kaneko (Tokyo, Japon), Heather
Cornell (New York, USA), Lane
Alexander (Chicago, USA) and Sam
Weber (San Francisco, USA). These teachers made me understand that
tap dance offers a musical experiment in movement by making jazz music
"visible". That’s what led me to create the "compagnie sucre et piment" in 2004 - renamed "jazz é-tap" in 2015.
Since 2006 and thanks to the work of Inez
Cierna (Atelier ET - Lausanne, Switzerland) and Noah
Pikes (Roy Hart Theatre - Malérargues, France), I gradually turned to theater, which offered me a new expressive context for tap dancing. This is because the creative processes in making theatre are also applicable to tap dancing, especially when using improvisation.
In 2011 I had the chance to lead some theatre workshops for ATD Quart Monde, an international NGO working against poverty and social exclusion. In 2012 I discovered the work of Jump Rhythm Jazz
Project who mix voice, and movement to jazz. These experiences allowed me to discover the amazing potential of art as a "human adventure", and "a possibility of meeting", beyond aesthetic creations. This gave me a new impetus which led me to pursue tap dance training
with Daniel Borak (Winterthur, Switzerland), Jason Janas (New York, USA), Danny Nielsen (Vancouver, Canada), Cartier
Williams (New York, USA), Guillem
Font and Laia Molins (Barcelona, Spain) and to engage the jazz é-tap company
in new projects...