About Malana and RIFF Dallas
Tap dancing is the one original dance art form in America that transcends dance…it is music in motion. Tap dancers are passionate, creative musicians who view their art form as an experience to be shared, passed down to new generations, and enjoyed by a diverse audience. Tap festivals are a rare opportunity for this exchange to take place. I created RIFF Dallas to bring this experience that every other large city in America has benefited from through the years, to Dallas, Texas. I encourage you to join me in this journey to celebrate tap dancing, expand the opportunities of local tap dancers, and to be an integral part of the history of moving tap dance forward in our community.
Our mission is to help put Dallas on the map as a global Arts & Culture icon by exposing the community to the best in tap dance education and performance. RIFF Dallas desires to be vehicle that both moves tap dancing forward while honoring the traditions of the past.
What Is RIFF Dallas?
DFW’s RIFF Dallas tap festival hosts world-renowned tap dance artists, body percussionists, four days of classes and workshops, showcases, tap jams, a cutting contest, professional concert, Q&A's, and much more! Performances and classes will take place in the Arts District in the heart of downtown Dallas and are open to festival participants and the general public.
Dance has always been my passion, my first love, and in the beginning there was tap.
Malana Murphy is the founder and producer of Dallas’ premier tap festival, Rhythm In Fusion Festival. RIFF’s inaugural year hosted some of America’s top talent in guest artists and has grown into the international success of hosting and celebrating tap dancers from all across the states, Canada, and Mexico while also producing tap concerts, student showcases, and tap history seminars. Malana’s passion for bringing master teachers from around the globe to the Dallas community has provided opportunities for tap lovers to learn, share, and grow, building on the traditions of generations of tap artists.
As the tap director at Next Step Dance in Frisco Texas, Malana has had the opportunity to share her love and passion for tap dancing while training and choreographing award winning dancers and tap works. Throughout her teaching career, she has been able to work with thousands of tap dancers locally and throughout the states, building on the tap community which is more commonly referred to as “tap family”.
Malana began her training at a very early age and began performing at the age of 7. Her first professional debut came at the age of 14 while performing in a production choreographed by Gracie Tune, sister of award winning Tommy Tune. As a teenager, Malana was accepted into the dance program at Booker T Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts where she received extensive training in ballet and modern. She graduated with honors and became a soloist for their performing company during her senior year. Malana has performed for numerous companies including American Airlines, Redken, Mary Kay, and Frito Lay, and has performed with Fabian, The Monkeys, and Mitch Ryder and The Detroit Wheels.
Bringing the tap community together, growing in abilities and numbers, and fusing rhythms, tap dance, and music with as many styles, techniques and ideas as possible has become Malana’s goal for the tap community. She desires to expand what is traditionally thought of as tap dance and to keep it growing, fresh and relevant, while still preserving and honoring the traditions of the legends and creators of the past.
Infusing the world with rhythm…one tap dancer at a time.