Tahoe Art Project dances back after 2 year hiatus

Ashleigh Goodwin /
2019 Dancing with the Tahoe Stars
Provided/Tahoe Arts Project

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — Tahoe Arts Project, TAP, has been bringing art and cultural education in the form of entertainment since 1987. Programs presented to the Lake Tahoe Basin by TAP are toured through schools in turn reaching over 5,000 students in Kindergarten to Seniors in High School, and everything in between. 

Uncle Shawn, Uncle Kawika, Auntie Pono and Auntie Lehua, members of musical group Kulaiwi, teach the students Hawaiian words in a song.
Ashleigh Goodwin/Tahoe Daily Tribune

According to Executive Director Peggy Blowney, the most recent program presented, Kulaiwi, was its first after a two year hiatus. In 2020, shows were thwarted by surging COVID-19 cases then, in 2021, by smoke and terror stricken skies as the Caldor fire chased locals from the basin.  

As the schools settle into the cadence of their new normal TAP is being welcomed back into school buildings once again with full line up of shows such as Living Voices in November 2022, TJ Carter & Band in January 2023, Puppet Art Theatre Company in February 2023, and Caminos Flamencos in March 2023. Each group’s tour ends with a public performance available for the community to enjoy.

Kulaiwi public performance 2022
Ashleigh Goodwin/Tahoe Daily Tribune

According to TAP “Current research validates TAP’s philosophy that these experiences help students develop their own creative and problem solving abilities, foster intellectual development and success in all academic areas.”

Blowney told the Tribune many schools couldn’t afford to pay the fees to have groups visit their school alone. The fundraising and planning efforts of TAP allows for many schools to have an otherwise impossible experience in a unique environment to learn about the world. 

One of the largest of nonprofit’s fundraisers, coming October 15,2022, is Dancing with the Tahoe Stars. This will be the ninth year of the collaborative event. Just like on the big screen TAP turns the lens on The Who’s who of locals. Tickets and sponsorships are on sale now.

All donations collected from ticket sales, sponsorships and donations made to the individual couples will go towards the overall fundraising effort and directed to bring more programs to the schools and community.

A prize is awarded to the couple who raise the most money in addition to it being a deciding factor for the ultimate winners of Dancing with the Tahoe Stars.

The winning couple is determined by judges scores, audience votes, and most money raised for the cause.

A quote from James D. Wolfensohn, former chairman of The Kennedy Center, lives on the home page of TAP’s website and aptly describes the significant difference art can make in the future of the community’s youth.  “The arts must be at the heart of every child’s learning experience if…they are to have a chance to dream and to create, to have beliefs, to carry a sense of cultural identity.” 

2019 Dancing with the Tahoe Stars
Provided/Tahoe Arts Project

This year’s dancing couples include ten pairs of lively individuals dancing for art and for the educational experiences of the youth in the surrounding communities. For a full list of dancers, purchase tickets/sponsorships, and donate visit For further information on future programs call 530-542-3632.

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