- Bill ‘Gramps’ Jones was delighted to be asked to dance by his granddaughter
- Maeve Jones, 10, needed a partner to help her practice for her summer recital
- The 72-year-old was taught the dance in six hours in Wakefield, Massachusetts
This is the adorable moment a 72-year-old tap danced with his granddaughter after she asked him to be her partner for a recital.
Maeve Jones, 10, was in desperate need of a dance partner for her tap routine, so she turned to her 72-year-old grandfather, who proved age really is just a number.
Bill ‘Gramps’ Jones – who has never missed one of Maeve’s recitals – was taught the routine across six one-hour lessons in Wakefield, Massachusetts.
The dance seems to prove that talent runs in the genes, because Bill’s father and grandfather were both stage performers as well, making the duet a celebration of five generations of performers in the family. Much like Anna Kendrick’s performance in the official video clip, the pair do a dance inspired by the cup game for children, but they also add a complex tap routine, which you can see below.
A 72-year-old tap danced with his granddaughter Maeve after she asked him to help her practice for a recital
Bill ‘Gramps’ Jones was taught the routine across six one-hour lessons in Wakefield, Massachusetts
Tapping, twirling and even cart-wheeling in perfect synchronicity with his granddaughter, the retired headteacher rolls back the years in an impressive performance.
Mr Jones performed in a tap-dancing quartet known as the Four Flashes in his teens
Beaming with pride as she watched her father-in-law and daughter’s jive last month, Jaime Jones said: ‘Maeve and I were talking about how much Bill loved tap, and she asked him to perform with her – the rest is history.
‘Bill was definitely not expecting to be asked.
‘He was so happy and accepted the invitation without hesitation.
‘Their performance was quite amazing. Maeve really loved dancing with her grandfather.
‘She shares him with two siblings and five cousins, so having this special time set aside for just the two of them was very special.
‘They share a very special bond through their love of dance.’
In his early teens, Mr Jones performed in a tap-dancing quartet known as the Four Flashes.
Following in the footsteps of his mother, the 72-year-old was delighted to see his passion for the art passed down to Maeve.
Maeve and Bill learned the dance in only six classes and did a remarkable job. Maeve is clearly more practiced with dance than her grandpa, but he still does a great job, not missing a single beat. The peak of the performance comes when Maeve does a graceful cartwheel, followed by Bill, somewhat less gracefully, although he still pulls it off, getting a healthy cheer from the audience.
Following in the footsteps of his mother, the 72-year-old was delighted to see his passion for dance passed down to Maeve
Ms Jones said: ‘I think for many people [the video] brings back fond memories of their own grandparents – these are times to be cherished.
‘I could not be prouder of my daughter for thinking of her grandfather and wanting to showcase their love in a dance.
‘They would both love to perform together again, on a grander stage.’
Not content with wowing the audience at Maeve’s dance recital, the dynamic duo went back to the dance studio to practice some new numbers. Grandpa and Maeve later returned to the stage one year later to perform the fittingly chosen track “You Make Me Feel so Young” by Michael Bublé, and this time in formal ballroom wear. The pair again show off their cartwheel skills, and this time 73-year-old Bill nails it, as you can see below.
The pair’s performances were a huge hit online, with appreciative comments such as “She will have these memories forever. Grandpa doing a cartwheel is so brave.” and “I was very close to my grandpa. He’s been gone 21 years. This brought me to tears. This little girl will cherish this!”
Maeve’s mother Jaime, who is Bill’s daughter-in-law, explained the origin of the viral clip on her YouTube channel, saying “I posted a small clip of this yesterday on my Instagram and so many loved it so I decided to share the entire dance.” She also credited choreographer Elyse Williamson with adapting the “Cups” dance to the stage.
Maeve and Elyse clearly have a good ear for a song just ripe for a tap dance interpretation. Their selection “Cups” was Anna Kendrick’s only contribution to the Pitch Perfect soundtrack. Despite being the actress’s one and only single release, the song went x3 Platinum in the US as well as picking up Platinum and Gold certifications in Australia and Britain respectively.
The song was the biggest hit from the film’s soundtrack, which produced three charting singles and became the best-selling soundtrack of 2013 in the US. The soundtrack to the musical comedy, which itself was a big hit, went on to sell 1.2 million units in the US.
When it comes to pleasing your granddaughter, some grandfathers really go the extra mile.
As 10-year-old Maeve Jones of Reading, Massachusetts was preparing for her summer dance recital, she wanted to do something she’d never done before. One day her mother, Jaime Casey Jones, mentioned that Maeve’s grandfather used to love to dance back in the day, and little Maeve took that idea and ran with it. She called her granddad, Bill Jones, and asked if he could dust off his old tap shoes to join her for a dance.
Naturally, the 72-year-old grandpa was on board.
With only a few weeks to go before the big recital, Maeve and Bill got together to rehearse just six times before taking to the stage at the recital. Their routine was choreographed by Elyse Williamson of From The Top Dance Center, and Bill totally nailed it.
Bill says he comes from a long line of performers, so getting back on the dance floor with his granddaughter seemed like no sweat. His grandmother had been a vaudeville dancer, and he’d danced with his own father when he was a child, so he’s not surprised that Maeve has always loved to dance. As a fifth generation dancer, performing is really in Maeve’s blood!
The duo danced to Anna Kendrick’s “When I’m Gone,” and the tapping of the tap shoes is the perfect accompaniment to the “cups” song. Most incredibly, Bill seems to not just keep up with the little girl — he seems like he could actually dance circles around her.
“There probably aren’t too many tap-dancing grandfathers around,”Bill said. “I was very proud to do it, and I was surprised at the response.â€
“I was actually surprised at how well Bill could tap,”said choreographer Elyse Williamson. “So they kept surprising me what they could handle when I gave them choreography.â€
Handle it he did, and at the end, Bill proved he’s even got a few extra tricks up his sleeve. After Maeve did a cute little cartwheel to finish the dance, she was shocked to see grandpa do one too!
“I decided to do a cartwheel again. I hadn’t done them in a while,”he said. “I used to do a bunch of other trucks, but that’s the last trick I have left.â€
“I was really surprised,”Maeve exclaimed. “I had no idea he could do one!â€
After Maeve’s mom shared video of the dance duo on Facebook, Maeve and Bill quickly went viral with thousands of shares. Just a few days after the video hit the web, the grandfather/granddaughter dance team was invited to dance on “Good Morning America!”
What a guy! We just love a grandfather who’s 100% there for his family! Also, we really hope we’re even half this spry when we hit 72.