About us and our Statement of Practice

About the ORI

The ORI is an Ottawa (Ontario, Canada)-based tap dance community that creates opportunities for the growth, visibility, and promotion of the art of tap dance and tap dance artists in the Ottawa region.

We are collaborative and inclusive tap dancers. We believe in the human connection that creates and lifts up this art form.

We embrace improvisation, rhythmic sophistication, the individual and community. We strive to contribute meaningfully to the art of tap dance and its future in Ottawa.

Cultivating a lively and positive tap dance scene, we:

  • Celebrate, promote and practice the art of tap dance;
  • Inspire and nurture the individual artistry of Ottawa’s tap dancers;
  • Partner with tap dance, musicians and other aligned rooted jazz artists and champions to foster our community’s development;
  • Are education and creation-based;
  • Work with live music whenever possible.

The ORI is a volunteer led and supported community and operates on a cost-recovery model. The ORI is seeking not-for-profit status.

Statement of Practice

We take great joy celebrating tap dance.

Tap dance is an integral part of jazz culture, which was shaped by the enslavement, oppression, and segregation of Black Americans.

Our practice is grounded in respect for tap dance as an art form, its roots laying deep in the turbulent history of the African American experience and culture. Through our practice, we honour Black tap dancers and musicians on whose shoulders we stand, and for whose sacrifices we are forever grateful.

We continue to strengthen our relationship with the history and culture of tap dance, including through community outreach, engagement, education, creation and performance. We strive to appreciate rather than appropriate.

We foster a safe and inclusive learning and creation environment for everyone.

Indigenous Land Acknowledgement

The ORI acknowledges that our activities take place in Ottawa, which is located on the traditional unceded territory of the Anishinaabe Algonquin Nation. The Algonquin peoples have lived on this land since time immemorial. We are grateful to have the opportunity to be present in this territory. We also show our gratitude and respect to them, and to the land for all that it provides us: trees to give shade, water and food to sustain us, and paths to connect us.


Find out more about what we’re up to on Facebook and Instagram.

Email us at ottawarhythminitiative@gmail.com