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On Thursday February 27, the EC Dance Marathon group performed to the theme of “For the Kids” to raise money and awareness for the Children’s Miracle Network in association with the Boston Children’s Hospital. The event took place in the auditorium from 7 to 8:30 pm with heartwarming dances and stories of spreading out the word to families and friends.
After the performance, the numbers were announced. Last year the event raised $1,500, however, this year it raised a whopping $3,300. With these donations, Dance Marathon has succeeded at meeting 80% of its goal for the academic year. When the dancers heard this they all shouted “For the Kids, For the Kids!”
The night began with a loud and fun opening number with the EC Dance marathoners and the contestants for the competition. Fun and quirky hosts Dance Marathon Captain Tyler Poquette and Alumna Beatrice Antoine presented the opening number as well as introduce us to the volunteers and students who coordinated the event. The volunteers and coordinators and volunteers are:
External Chair: Tyler Poquette
Internal Chair: Garrett Charette
Fundraising and Sponsorship Coordinators: Anastasia Yogas & Ariana Cardillo
Entertainment Coordinators: Ian Fay & Lindsey Garvey
Catering Coordinators: Corey Bailey & Jessica DaSilva
Hospital Relations: Tori Bodell
Operations Coordinators: Lindsey Wood & Jennifer Burgess
Dancer Relations and Morale: Kara Cann & Brandon Jones
Community Relations (In charge of planning last night’s event):
Jill Morey and Alexandra Schroll
Communications Coordinators: Emily Tourtillotte & Wojciech Kopacz
Advisors: Alissa Lynch and Kevin Farrell
After the introductions, Poquette and Antoine gave the audience an overview of what the goals and outreach is for Emmanuel College. Giving us a brief intro on what Dance Marathon is Antoine explained “it is a multi-hour event across the country where dancers help raise money for the Children’s Miracle Network- ‘For the Kids’.”
Last year Emmanuel raised $40,796 for Boston Children’s Hospital. Antoine then exclaimed “We have two goals; one is to try to raise $42,000 For the Kids and two to be the largest fundraiser in the city of Boston.”
Moving onto the competition the hosts explained the judges were judging based on costume, choreography, technique and dance. The judges were Rosie Holmes, a coordinator at Boston Children’s Hospital for Children’s Miracle Network, Cindy Chiu, a mother of one of the Miracle Network Children, and last year’s winner Amanda Sheehan.
The first performance was by Danielle Angelo and Scott Gagnon doing a tap performance to Proud Mary. The crowd laughed and clapped along as they tapped in rhythm. In overall score they received three 8’s and totaled with a 24.
The next performance was a hip hop/ breakdance routine by Amma Marfo & Kenny Truong. As they moved to the tech beats the crowd went wild. The scores they received were a 9, a 10, and another 9, leaving them with a total of 28.
As the crowd got pumped up the next routine came out. A jazz routine was performed by Michael Conte and Ashley Houston-King. They started with a lovely note of Just the Way you Look Tonight which then in a shocking twist transitioned into Love Shack and Crazy in Love. They received a 10, 9, and another 9 from the judges giving them a tie at 28 in overall score.
Taking a moment to reflect on why the performers there the hosts introduced judge Cindy Chiu who was there to represent her daughter Katie who is part of Children’s Miracle Network. Chiu shared her heartbreaking experience of her daughter who underwent treatment after she fell ill. When she was taken to the hospital the doctors diagnosed her as suffering from a metabolic stroke which lefy her in a coma.
“It started as a flu symptom,” Chiu explained. “And while I along with her friends and teachers recovered within the 24 hours of the symptoms Katie didn’t recover.” Her mother then explained how her daughter was in the hospital for 23 days and was on 8 medications. The stroke had caused brain damage which led the muscles in her body to stiffen and she couldn’t walk. However, as Cindy Chiu put it, “Katie was strong and determined. By the time she turned three she was able to walk again. My husband and I had entered her in the Disney’s Fun Run for kids before she became sick we still went and I thought I would help push her along but Katie ran with the other kids to the finish line and received a medal. I beamed with so much pride for her.”
The competition continued with a swing performance by Carlos Barrera and Alexandra Schroll. While dancing to popular swing music the audience clapped and cheered to the sweet performance of these two. Following them were Garrett Charette and Carolyn Caveny who performed a hip hop number. The crowd went crazy as the two danced to Ice Ice Baby which then transitioned into Can’t Touch This and ended with fake money and silly jackets to Thrift Shop. They received the highest score of the night with two 10’s and a 9 placing them at 29 out of 30.
To close the show, advisors Kevin Farrell and Alyssa Lynch gave closing remarks and words of thanks to the many volunteers who put all their hard work and time into the event.
“We come to work to inspire all of you,” Farrell said. “And little did we realize how much all of you inspire us.”
He then went on to give more thanks and put on a video montage of the children we are helping. When the video ended he explained the next part of the event called the Morale Dance, it is a dance to encourage others during the Dance Marathon when they get tired to encourage them to dance for those who can’t stand.
At the end of the night the winners were announced. After adding up scores and techniques the judges awarded Best Choreography to Alexandra Schroll and Carlos Barrera, Best Dressed to Danielle Angelo and Scott Gagnon, Best Technique to Kenny Truong and Amma Marfo, Dynamic Duo to Ashley Houston-King and Michael Conte , Fan Favorite Garrett Charette and Carolyn Caveny. In the end the 2014 winners of EC Dancing with the Stars were presented by the 2013 winners Jack Kelley and Amanda Sheehan are Garrett Charette and Carolyn Caveny.
Dance Marathon will be holding their Dance Marathon Event on March 22nd starting at 10PM and ending March 23rd at 10am. The goal is $42,000. If their goal is reached they will have raised over 100,000 for Boston Children’s Hospital in just 3 years.