A line wrapped around most of Brady Educational Center for the “Dance for Their Voice” show Friday, April 15. The event, which was put on by the St. Thomas Dance Club, sponsored research and care at Children’s Hospital in St. Paul.
The Dance Club hoped to provide the hospital with a large donation from this year’s event and was approached by a donor to match the club’s donation. The club needed to raise $1,000 to receive a matched donation from community member Judy Dove.
“We try and find a different cause to do every year,” said senior Lexy Wolf, Dance Club co-president. “We had personal connection to this with our executive board, and it’s something we decided to do as a whole.”
Ally Gillen, cousin to Dance Club member Sara Greethurst, was diagnosed with a rare auto-immune disease, dermatoyositis, in 2008 and was treated at Children’s Hospital. Gillen’s mother, Heather Gillen, spoke at the opening of the event about her support of Children’s Hospital.
The Dance Club sold “Dance for Their Voice” bracelets for $3. The bracelets were sold until the end of the event, and the extra bracelets were donated to Children’s Hospital.
“It was very successful,” Wolf said. “We still have a ton left over that we decided to give to Children’s.”
Variety of dances
Dance Club members also showed their support for the cause through 17 different dances including hip-hop dances, solo dances, lyrical dances and even a glow-in-the-dark dance.
The Dance Club is made up of three teams of dancers: Silver Team, White Team and Purple Team. The dances were divided among these teams in addition to three featured solo dances.
“The show was incredible,” senior Colin Mihm said. “I went to the first show and it was good, but this show was 10 times better.”
Dance Club was not the only group featured in the event. Exisdanz All-Stars, a group of dancers ranging from 18 to 36 years old, performed in a number of dances as well. The group allows members to continue doing something they love for a longer amount of time.
“They are essentially another outlet for dancers in college and out of college,” Wolf said.
Special for seniors
The event was special for Dance Club seniors because club members and family honored graduating seniors at the event.
“It’s a really big deal to have our last performance here,” said senior Laura Zimmerman, Dance Club co-president. “So that was really nice to be recognized by them.”
The seniors were called onto stage and given flowers and recognition for their work with the club. The seniors also were introduced to the audience and given front positions for the final “Bye Bye Bye” dance.
Donations from the event provided Children’s with $1,388.24, and the matching $1,000 also will be contributed.
“This crowd was very engaging and very exciting for us,” Wolf said. “The turnout was fabulous.”
Sophomore Daniel McCourtney, the show’s music specialist, said “Just to see the girls on stage having so much fun, this is what they love to do, and it’s fun just to help them out. It was kind of mind-blowing, and it really makes me wish I was a better dancer.”
Dan Fastner can be reached at email@example.com.