The Adventures of Tapman, by Chicago-based Tap Man Productions LLC, is a show for all ages, including younger children and their families. Tap Man (Tristan Bruns) fights an evil invisible guy and tries to impress the spunky Modern Marvel (Kate O’Hanlon) through dance. At first it was a lot of work to follow the details of the dialogue-heavy story. There are three characters in the show, but one of them is invisible. This makes it hard to follow the plot. The acoustics of the Illusion made it almost impossible to understand Tapman when he was speaking and tapping at the same time. Hopefully, the cast will make some adjustments for the remainder of the run.
All of these issues aside, the show is still fun. It hits its stride in the second half, when the focus shifts from a lot of talking to a lot of dancing. And the dancing is fantastic. Energetic, creative, and original, Bruns and O’Hanlon are a joy to watch. Plus they are very welcoming to the children in attendance. They invited children on stage to take selfies and they had a little audience participation where they taught a young volunteer named Kira a dance. Tapman is a family-friendly addition to this year’s festival.