The Oscars may be over, but we still have lots of glitz, glamour and yes, dancing on the way! We are only days away from Dancing for Safe Haven on March 2! Dancers are practicing, votes are coming in for online favorite, tickets are being sold and Loews Vanderbilt is gearing up for an outstanding dinner and dancing event! We have had a great response and are expecting a sold out crowd. (We still have a few tickets left. Click here to purchase tickets.)
As the nerves get higher and the competition heats up, we thought we would check in with some of our dancers, event chairs and judges to see how things are going…
Event Chairs Deborah Varallo, Bob Tuke and John Steele:
“We are excited and honored to be chairs for the 2013 Dancing for Safe Haven event. We have great celebrity dancers, professional dance partners, judges and emcees. Having all danced ourselves at a previous DFSH, we know all of the work, dedication and passion that goes into this event and understand the sheer bravery it takes for those dancing. We hope to see you all out at the event on March 2. And if you cannot attend, think about making a donation online.”
Judge Jana Davis on what she will be looking for from the dancers competing:
“Obviously skill is important – the steps, the rhythm and how two dancers relate to one another are a part of the total picture. But personality helps!! It’s a big room, and if a contestant can fill that room with energy, that contributes to the overall experience.”
Celebrity Dancer John Dwyer what it is like to prepare for the competition:
“This is a real process. I’m humbled by the amount of coordination and strength you have to have to do this without out it looking like you’re trying. There has to be a tipping point where the routine becomes second nature and you just have fun with it, but I’m not nearly there yet. I have to say that my partner Anne-Marie is incredibly patient and has made rehearsal fun. We are working on a routine that I have wanted to do (secretly) for years and after March 2, I can scratch this off my bucket list! While my initial motivation to participate was because of relationships I have with Safe Haven leaders, it has turned into much more than that. I can’t promise I will win but I do believe that it’s really a competition within yourself. It’s like golf when you play the course and not your opponent. I’m going to try my best and know that I will have succeeded. Okay, I just reread that and I’m not buying it either. I’m in it to win it!”
Celebrity Dancer Kate Herman on why she is participating in Dancing for Safe Haven:
“I want to be involved in this event because it is a unique way to create awareness for an organization filling a need in the community. Not only do I like that Safe Haven helps homeless families and keeps them together, but that they foster long term success through education and counseling. This is an organization that gets a result. This is what has motivated me to do something as challenging as learning dancing! I have a lot to learn before March 2!”
Celebrity Dancer Meredith Libbey on the best/hardest parts of competition and why she is participating:
“The best part has been having the opportunity to learn from Michael Hosale who is at the top of his game as a dancer and teacher. I was stunned by how much we covered in our first lesson and how much in every lesson since. Michael is very patient and an outstanding teacher who shares his love of music and dance readily. Fortunately, he also has a good sense of humor. He has certainly needed it with me. The hard part is knowing that I am likely taxing the considerable patience of a great teacher! I am used to being a good student and am definitely not in this case. Still, I think the DFSH guests will be surprised by what a professional dancer like Michael can teach a novice like me in a short period of time.
As a Metro Schools employee, I know how important it is for children to have stability in their lives. When children move frequently, it disrupts their education, they may fall behind academically and may even get discouraged and drop out of school. The stability that Safe Haven offers children and families can not only prevent that, but can change the trajectory for the family. Safe Haven serves families at a pivotal point and the benefits will pay off for the family across generations. There are not many organizations that offer such a long-term benefit.
When Joyce Lavery and Trey Lipman ask, right-minded people must answer!”
Previous Celebrity Dancer and Event Chair Mike Pigott on the event:
“My wife Sharon and I have been part of some great dance events in recent years. No one does a better job of making both the audience and the dancers feel special than Dancing For Safe Haven. It is a first-class experience from beginning to end. And it’s for a great cause!”
More about the event:
It it not too late to vote for your favorite dancer online. The online voting will close March 1. It is a tight competition, so please vote. You can vote once a day per IP address. Click here to cast your vote now. Celebrity dancers include John Dwyer, anchor News Channel 2; Darrell Freeman, founder and executive chairman at Zycron; Kate Herman, president and publisher at the Nashville Business Journal; Meredith Libbey, assistant to the director Metro Nashville Schools; Vicki Yates, anchor/reporter Channel 5. Please click here to read more about the celebrity dancers and their professional dance partners.
Can’t attend the event? You can still support Safe Haven and the event by making a donation. You can make a donation in honor of a dancer, judge, event chair, emcee or for Safe Haven, in general. You can also donate in honor of our Hero Award honorees, Karen and David Conrad. Click here to donate now.
Please click here to see a list of sponsors.