His signature tap dance moves can be seen through the character Mumble in the movie "Happy Feet."
Tony Award-winning choreographer and tap dancer Savion Glover will make his debut at the McAninch Arts Center at the College of DuPage, 425 Fawell Blvd., Glen Ellyn, at 4 p.m. Nov. 26 with the Midwest premiere of his show, "All FuNKD' Up!" Tickets are available by going to atthemac.org.
Suburban Life reporter Eric Schelkopf had the chance to talk to Glover about the upcoming show. The interview has been edited for length and style.
Schelkopf: I know you have your show coming up, the Midwest premiere of "All FuNKD' Up!" You must be pretty excited about that?
Glover: Yes, we are.
Schelkopf: I know that you will be tap dancing to a live band. What were your goals for this show? What did you want to do with this show?
Glover: Well, what we do with this concert is allow the audience to enjoy the dance, not only the visual, but also the audio – the sound of the dance. It's basically giving them more insight, more education on my approach to tap dancing.
Schelkopf: When did you get the idea for this show?
Glover: I got the idea maybe about two years ago. It was just a matter of getting the right people together and then to actually sit down and choreograph it and put it together.
Schelkopf: Was there any particular inspiration for the show?
Glover: It is just life experiences. Wherever I am in my life's journey, that's going to come out in my work.
Schelkopf: The late tap dance legend Gregory Hines had said that you were "possibly the best tap dancer that ever lived." What was your reaction to him saying that?
Glover: That's his opinion, but in my opinion, those guys – including Gregory Hines, Jimmy Slyde and Sammy Davis Jr. – are the great contributors. I guess when I am no longer, then we can talk about me being the greatest. But for me, those guys are the greatest. ... You know, we all have a "greatest" of our generation. And for someone like Gregory Hines to say that about me, that's a high compliment. At the same time, I hold those guys up in such high regard. They are the greatest to me.
Schelkopf: What did you learn from somebody like Gregory Hines?
Glover: I learned a life's worth of information. I've learned several things from this man – humanity, truth, honor – things that have nothing to do with tap dancing, but only have to do with me being a better human being and a better man in this country and in this world.
Schelkopf: You did choreography work for the movies "Happy Feet" and "Happy Feet 2." Through that work, do you think you have gained more fans, maybe with kids and their parents?
Glover: Yeah, I would think so. The more you do, the more recognition you are going to get.
Schelkopf: I know that you've actually taught tap dancing since you were 14. That's pretty incredible. What are the main things that you try to teach people?
Glover: There are basic principles and rudiments that I feel are necessary to know. Aside from that, I try to teach them about how to express themselves, and not just follow what the teacher is doing or what the teacher is telling them to do.