Michael Basha’s short film, Crutch-Tap, is a heartfelt story of grief. Chas (Chase Harvey) and Solomon were brothers who dreamed of becoming tap dancers as a way to escape from their parent’s fighting. The two would tape beer cans to their feet and pretend they were the Nicholas Brothers and, oddly, the Three Stooges. After Solomon passed away, Chas continued to dance in memory of his brother.
While grieving, Chas created a new form of dance called Crutch-Tap. In this routine, old tap shoes are attached to the bottom of a pair of crutches. Chas would dance with the crutches as if his brother Solomon was still there.
“…old tap shoes are attached to the bottom of a pair of crutches…”
Crutch-Tap is not chronicling this new dance form but is more of a reflection on a brother’s loss and grief. Though the narrative builds up to Chas’ first live performance, it’s his narration that does the emotional heavy-lifting. It speaks to how much he misses his brother and how dancing with a pair of crutches makes Chas feel like Solomon is still with him physically and emotionally.
The actual Crutch-Tap may not be that impressive, but that’s not the point. Crutch-Tao is really about Chas’ journey as he practices late at night in solitude, knowing no one will pass by and drop him some change. The dance is not for us but for Solomon.
Look for Crutch-Tap at local film festivals.
"…more of a reflection on a brother's loss and grief."