Term 3 2022 enrolments now open!
Open Day Oct 1. Free classes to try, all ages!
Miss Lou Lou is the owner and founder of Glittery Tapping Wonderland, she teaches Adult Tap and works closely with shy Fairies to help them settle into their dance classes.
It all began over 30 years ago when Lou Lou was learning tap dancing from renowned teachers around Melbourne. (Which is a little strange as Miss Lou Lou has just celebrated her 25th birthday!) She had a fine time learning from these lovely ladies, but one day stopped and said to herself, “Is that all there is?” Lou Lou was feeling unfulfilled with the choices of music she was dancing too, the lack of glamour and of course the all important element, the lack of kookiness!
In 1985 Lou Lou was asked to choreograph a tap dance for a hair show. It was a dream come true. She had six girls and herself dressed as cowgirls dancing to the “Barbershop Boogie”. Two male dancers were dressed as the old fashioned barber and his customer…
…and Miss Lou Lou was born!
1986 Miss Lou Lou started to teach friends and anyone else who had heard about the merriment at a Local church hall in Prahran. She quickly formed her own style of tap dancing, choosing music nobody had ordinarily tap danced to before, music from the 60’s and 70’s. (Of course, the 80’s had just finished and it was still too un-groovy to dance to – yet!)
The main ingredient to Miss Lou Lou’s Tap Dancing Academy, was glamour and kookiness. She named steps like the Glitter step, the Sparkle step and the Fred Astaire. Classes weren’t called “Level 1”, she named them “Absolute-Beginners”, “Not-So-Beginners” and so on. Two left feet were optional and you were never made fun of (well, only in the kindest way). The school quickly expanded as news traveled fast, Miss Lou Lou opened another branch of Miss Lou Lou’s Tap Dancing Academy in Fitzroy.
Miss Lou Lou was also singing and tap dancing in a kooky Country and Western band called “Miss Lou Lou and the Trickstars”.
The act was screaming for more wackiness and soon had “Miss Lou Lou’s Tapping Starlettes”, the advanced group of the Academy performing live with the band on stage. Cowboy hats, fluff and sequins – it was crazy! The glamorous troupe also performed live to pre-recorded songs like Elvis’ “GI Blues” and Dean Martin’s “Robert E Lee”.
Miss Lou Lou and the Superb’s was also born, a 60’s and 70’s pop/cabaret band which performed at many crazy weddings and parties. There were several costume and wig changes throughout the night, a sight to behold.
As Miss Lou Lou’s Tap Dancing Academy expanded, Miss Lou Lou finally leapt into her own studio in Richmond in 1993, she had built her own brand of dancing school and it had become “The groovy place” to go to learn to Tap Dance. It was lovely to have a home and she decorated it with kooky sixties furniture and 60’s space age lights. Establishing her brand and bringing joy to hundreds of students.
In 1996, Miss Lou Lou suddenly up and left for LA, she had met the man she was going to marry, Actor/Comedian Steve Kearney (Los Trios Ringbarkus). Life certainly was different for her over there!
Miss Lou Lou had the bug to dance and quickly signed up at a couple of dance schools around LA. She was lucky enough to find the legendary Mr. Paul Kennedy. She trained with Paul Kennedy along side the Nicholas Sisters. Mr. Paul Kennedy was a gorgeous man who played records for the class to dance to and ate his dinner during the class.
Trying to run Miss Lou Lou’s Tap Dancing Academy from LA was a very difficult process,
one which called for Miss Lou Lou to sell. So in 1997 Miss Lou Lou sold Miss Lou Lou’s Tap Dancing Academy to Miss Renee, one of Miss Lou Lou’s head teachers. Since then, it has changed hands again and was bought by one of Miss Lou Lou’s previous students “Miss Jane” who started Glamour Puss Studio’s Tap Dancing Academy and has carried on Miss Lou Lou’s tradition.
Miss Lou Lou was teaching at different schools around LA, and to promote her brand and have publicity, Miss Lou Lou and Mr. Steve put on a show. The media dived on the colorful, kooky and glamorous photos and articles were a plenty, on the opening night of the show hundreds of people showed up. Mr. Steve and Miss Lou Lou were wondering who the crowd were lining up to see. It was for them!
Steve and Miss Lou Lou soon signed a deal with Warner Bros and NBC to develop and star in their own sitcom which they developed with the Warner Bros’ writers over the next year. During that year they continued to perform their show in LA between traveling to the UK to perform at the Fringe Comedy Festival in Edinburgh.
Unfortunately or fortunately for Melbourne, the TV show did not develop into a fully-fledged TV show and, by mid-1999, Miss Lou Lou and Mr. Steve decided to head back to Melbourne with their newborn son Maxwell Dexter.
Not one to sit still for a second, Miss Lou Lou founded Your Cool Baby a colorful and Kooky line of clothing designed for boys.
The range includes Elvis costumes for Babies through to kids wear sizes 1 to 4.
[singlepic id=37 w=320 h=240 float=right]After their second baby boy, Freddy Finnegan, the Kearney Clan moved to Sunny Aspendale for a comfy sixties family life by the bay. Soon the local kindergarten teacher begged Miss Lou Lou to start teaching again. It took 3 seconds of convincing and Miss Lou Lou was up and running.
After teaching from local church halls (de ja vu) for 2 years, Miss Lou Lou finally opened the Glittery Tapping Wonderland in Mordialloc. The school being highly successful, it seemed it is what everyone was craving for. With over 350 students Miss Lou Lou has brought glamour and kookiness to the Bayside area.
Fourth Term in 2007 Miss Lou Lou spread her glittery wings and brought her glamorous and kooky Dancing school back to town. Starting out in Church halls for the third time in her career, Miss Lou Lou started to build a glamorous troupe of dancing delights in Armadale and Caulfield South. The word spread and the school expanded. Soon Miss Lou Lou was spending every waking moment over the winter school holidays revamping a fabulous space in St Kilda to call her own. Third Term in 2008 the Glittery Tapping Wonderland opened in St Kilda!
Recently she choreographed the Silverchair music video ‘If you keep losing sleep.’
Following the 2009 End of year concert, Miss Lou Lou decided it was time to open a northern Glittery Tapping Wonderland Studio. Assured that she knew what she was doing and that teaching from yet another church hall would prove futile, it took only 3 months of convincing for Mr. Steve to be convinced and agreed to set up another Studio. Miss Lou Lou searched for the most superb venue and opened the Northcote Dancing Studio on the 10th of April 2010.
Since then Miss Lou Lou and Mr. Steve relocated their St Kilda Studio to the now Glen Huntly Studio. Another gorgeous place to dance!
Miss Lou Lou’s dancing schools have evolved over the last 25 years and have more than just tap dancing, we have an amazing “Fairy” program for 2 to 5 yrs, Ballet, Jazz, Hip Hop, Acrobatics and Musical Theatre! There is so much on offer and so much more yet to follow!
The next Open Day is Saturday Oct 1! Come along for a free class, all ages, all abilities. Bookings essential.