Tony Curtis

Tony Curtis demonstrates a "full break" - or triple TIME STEP.

The Time Step is a repetitive tap combination which was initially used as a means by which a tap dancer could communicate to the band, what type of tempo was required. Different dancers preferred different tempos according to their ability. In the 1930s there were many many tap dancers - each with a distinctive sound and time step, and subsequently could be recognized by the sound they made. Before the emergence of many of the main innovators, tap dancers used to begin all of their routines with a time step which was then followed by a routine or improvisation.