Cary, NC – Charity and competition come together in the annual “Dancing Like The Stars” fundraiser, with dancers from Cary’s Fred Astaire Dance Studio paired with local celebrities to put on an exciting evening.
Dancing Like The Stars
Dancing Like The Stars is an annual event by the National Inclusion Project, which works with organizations such as the YMCA and the Girl and Boy Scouts to include children with disabilities. In the event – which takes place at the Southern Women’s Show on Saturday, April 14, 2018 – local celebrities from state government employees to local television reporters to teachers and more will put on a dance together with Fred Astaire Studio dancers.
“It’s a great experience and we’ve done it for 22 years,” said Paul Millington with the Fred Astaire Dance Studio. “It’s always fun to see new faces and it’s good to see them learn and grow as they pick up the dances.”
Millington, who will be one of the seven dancers partnered with the contestants, said each participant approaches the dancing differently and each dancer has a unique experience teaching them.
“Some are really gun-ho, some pick up on it as you go on and some clearly want to put their heart and soul into the dance,” Millington said.
Competition and Charity
When Millington and the other dancers first meet their partners, he said they have an evaluation process where they try to get to know them, which helps find the right kind of dance.
“We try to pick a dance that draws off of their personal experiences,” Millington said. “Every dance has a story.”
Another important component is the music paired with the dance and Millington said they try to find songs that the contestants feel resonate with them.
In Dancing Like The Stars, at the end of the dances, audiences vote for each dancer through donations – $1 equals one vote. So while all participants have the same goal of raising money for the National Inclusion Project, Millington said there is still a sense of competition.
“Everyone is excited to win and put on a great performance,” he said. “We’re trying to go head-to-head.”
Saturday, April 14, 2018
Story by Michael Papich. Photos courtesy of the National Inclusion Project.