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Our Mission

These are the main objectives of Tap Dance Central Inc. as we begin our work:


To create and support essential and critically needed space for tap dance and percussive artists to create, rehearse, teach and perform in New York City. The extreme lack of space available for tap dance and other percussive dance is symptomatic of long-standing marginalization of these forms in the greater dance community.  Having a dedicated space for tap dance is necessary to support and sustain tap dance as an art and ensure tap dance is included as a vital part of the larger dance community


To offer an inclusive and rich educational program that supports the growth of tap dance as an art form by providing access to comprehensive training for all ages that embraces and celebrates the history, artistry and cultural contributions of the masters as well as contemporary explorations and the artists that move tap dance forward as an art 


To provide scholarship assistance to multi-generational students who wish to participate in our educational programs and need support to do so, seeking to make participation in our programs open and inclusive to all 

To present a variety of artists in our tap dance community (including students and professional artists) in performance in a variety of settings in the NYC community and beyond with the goal to inspire, educate, and create new generations of audiences who appreciate and support tap dance  


To strive to support diversity and equity in all these listed objectives of our mission for Tap Dance Central Inc. 

Meet The Board

Susan Hebach
Artistic/Executive Director

Susan Hebach considers herself a graduate of “Woodpeckers Tap Dance Center” where she was fortunate to study with a diverse group of master tap artists such as her mentor, Brenda Bufalino, and other inspirational teachers such as Barbara Duffy, Margaret Morrison, Josh Hilberman, Lynn Dally, and Diane Walker to name a few. As a choreographer, she enjoys developing new works and collaborating with fellow dancers and has enjoyed having choreography selected for presentation in the Rhythm In Motion series, Tap City, The New York City Tap Festival, and Steps Beyond Foundation's choreography series. Susan served as the director of the ATDF Youth Program and the Tap City Youth Ensemble from 2006 - 2024. She also directed the Pre-Professional Program/Youth Program at Tap City from 2012-2023. 


Susan was delighted to be featured on the cover of Dance Teacher Magazine in May 2009 as part of a featured article about the Tap City Youth Ensemble. She has served on the dance faculty for Oklahoma City University in Oklahoma, and Stephens College in Columbia, Missouri as visiting guest artist. She was Co-Director of the teaching team for the “Tap Teacher Training Program” at ATDF with Margaret Morrison which brought together tap teachers from around the globe to study curriculum based on the dances of The Copasetics, using a solid technique approach aligned with jazz music concepts. Susan also wrote a book for an after school young reader series, called “Tap Dance”, by Rosen Publishing. She also had the unique opportunity to coach Christine Baranski in "soft shoe", for her role inNew York City Center's Encore Series production of "On Your Toes" in 2018,


Sandra Chapman

Sandra (Chap) Chapman, Ed. D. is the CEO of Chap Equity Inc., an organization rooted in collaboration, research and dialogue. Chap is a long-time member of the Art of Hosting community, where members believe that any community of people can develop effective ways of gathering and landing on the collective wisdom of the group. The methodologies used center authentic dialogue and innovative structures to aid in organizational change. Dr. Chap translates concepts on identity into interactive workshops, and enjoys collaborating on writing projects. Dr. Chap is the co-author of Bias Starts Early. Let's Start Now: Developing an Anti-Racist, Anti-Bias Book Collection for Infants and Toddlers (; Black Girl on the Playground (Teaching Beautiful Brilliant Black Girls, Corwin Press, 2021); Turning Thinking into Action: The Power of Equity-based Pedagogical Frameworks to Support Practice, She was interviewed by UNICEF (July 2020), Why Kids of All Races Need to Know How to Talk About Race and Racism. Listen to her on What School Could Be, or watch it on Game Changer Series. Chap co-created the slogan, You Get What You Get and You Don’t Get Upset, Unless It’s Unjust, Then Let’s Make a Fuss!, a child-centered slogan for inspiring young activists.

Chap is the proud mother of two ATDF graduates. Her daughter, Sophia, began tapping with ATDF at age 7 and after seeing the joy it brought her, her son insisted he join. Andrei began tapping at 4-years old and continued until he was 18.

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Maria McGrath

Maria McGrath is a children’s librarian at the Brooklyn Public Library’s branch locations. Before starting at BPL, Maria was a freelance copyeditor and proofreader for both the large publishing houses and smaller organizations, as well as a dedicated parent volunteer at several NYC public schools, assisting with everything from field trips to class communications and website maintenance. She also assisted a charitable organization with volunteer registration, tracking, and database maintenance.

In 2014, when her daughters were interested in tap classes and the local dance studio couldn't meet their needs, they were very fortunate to find ATDF. Marly's older sister took one year of classes, while Marly has made tap the centerpiece of her full extracurricular schedule.

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Robin Pagliuco

Robin Pagliuco started dancing at three years old, and continued with tap, ballet, jazz and pointe for the next twenty years. After a long absence, she rekindled her love affair with tap dance through the adult program at ATDF. With extensive experience managing multi-media nonprofits, launching large scale art projects, managing budgets and finance and using data to advocate for change, Robin is grateful to use those skills helping to launch NYC Tap Dance Central, Inc. Currently managing a program for the City to streamline how people move from homelessness to permanent housing, Robin taps as much as possible.

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Adrianna Valentin

Adrianna Valentin fell completely in love with tap dance when she saw one of her mother’s students dance for her school. She was put in her first tap class when she was 7 years old taught by Susan Hebach. With Susan she joined as a student at the American Tap Dance Foundation and after a few years became a member of the Tap City Youth Ensemble pre-professional program. Through ATDF and TCYE she was able to perform at various schools, community events, and the Thanksgiving Day Parade. In her later years at the foundation, she assisted with teaching tap classes at various difficulties and ages. Adrianna attended Lafayette College in Easton, Pennsylvania, graduating with majors in Psychology and Film & Media Studies. She has since worked in the film industry as a publicist for film and television at Falco Ink, an entertainment public relations agency. Through the years she has led publicity campaigns for HBO, Amazon Prime, Disney, Sony, Neon and more and has worked with talented actors and filmmakers to promote and elevate their work.

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Paul Cates
Legal Advisor

Paul Cates is an attorney and communications specialist. He began his career as a criminal defense attorney with Legal Aid Society of New York and later transitioned to a career in communications, working with some of the nation’s most respected legal advocacy organizations, including the Innocence Project and the American Civil Liberties Union. He is a graduate of the University of Georgia and the University of Georgia School of Law.  He is the co-author with Leslie Cooper of the second edition of the ACLU publication, Too High a Price: The Case Against Restricting Gay Parenting. He also loves to tap dance.

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