A Gala Like No Other! Young Audiences’ Dazzle: Mad Hot Ballroom 45th Anniversary Gala is April 21st in Princeton

A Gala Like No Other!

Young Audiences’ Dazzle: Mad Hot Ballroom 45th Anniversary Gala is April 21st in Princeton

Popular dancing for the arts gala supports arts education for children throughout the region

Back by popular demand, Dazzle: Mad Hot Ballroom 45th Anniversary Celebration will be held on Saturday, April 21, 2018 from 6pm-11pm at the Princeton Hyatt and will benefit Young Audiences New Jersey & Eastern Pennsylvania. The event will include Young Audiences’ version of a “Dancing With The Stars” Competition, performances by students working with YA teaching artists, and a chance to win a luxury South African Photo Safari!

Dazzle is modeled after the reality television program “Dancing with the Stars” and will feature local community leaders as the “Stars.” Each dancer teams up with a professional from Fred Astaire Dance Studio in Princeton where they take lessons for 3 months to prepare for their Dazzle debut and compete for votes to win the coveted YA Disco Ball Trophy.

Dazzle Mad Hot Ballroom Reveals VIP Dancers at a recent Meet & Greet event at Fred Astaire Dance Studio in Princeton. From Left to right: Ilya Abdullin, Carol Golden, Jeffrey Vega, Maria Shumakher, Darya Gidaspova, Tom Sullivan, Jeannine Cimino, and Juan Ramirez.

This year’s Stars are Jeannine Cimino (Berkshire Bank, Senior Vice President, Regional Operations Leader) Carol Golden (Attorney & Community Activist), Tom Sullivan (Princeton Partners, CEO), and Jeffrey M. Vega (President & CEO, Princeton Area Community Foundation).

“Each dancer has a personal connection to the power of the arts and Young Audiences is honored to have these four dedicated and courageous advocates working on and off the dance floor to help bring arts-rich experiences to all children in our region,” shared Liz Fillo, Young Audiences’ trustee and Dazzle co-chair.

“I work hard to set a good example for my children by making it a priority to give back to my community and support causes that I care deeply about. I feel very lucky that I was able to take dance lessons throughout my childhood and I am looking forward to putting my dance shoes back on to support Young Audiences so ALL children can experience the arts,” said Jeannine Cimino.

Carol Golden shared, “I decided to participate in YA’s Dazzle Mad Hot Ballroom because I wanted to do something completely outside my comfort zone while still contributing to my community in a meaningful way. I’m nervous and excited to start my dancing career!”

Tom Sullivan expressed, “I love Young Audiences because they open eyes, bring joy, and inspire thousands of students to embrace the arts and each other. Isn’t that what we all need?”

“At the Community Foundation, we are working to ensure that ALL KIDS THRIVE, and through my work, I’ve had the chance to see how YA partners with schools to make arts education accessible to all students. The arts play a vital role in enriching young lives, which is why I proudly will dance for the arts at Dazzle,” said Jeffrey Vega.

Another highlight of the evening will be performances by students who will take the stage and share their creativity in songwriting, poetry, video editing and theatre created alongside YA’s extraordinary teaching artists. 2018 marks Young Audiences’ 45th anniversary.  To celebrate, Young Audiences is undertaking a $450,000 campaign to grow capacity to serve more students and to develop new and innovative programs that respond to unmet needs in schools. Funds raised through Dazzle’s Fund-a-Need auction will support the scholarship fund of the campaign.

Young Audiences’ trustee Liz Fillo and Dazzle 2014 dance competition winner and trustee Barbara Coe are gala co-chairs of the event. Dazzle professional dancers include Princeton’s Fred Astaire Dance Studio instructors Ilya Abdullin, Darya Gidaspova, Juan Ramirez, and Maria Shumakher.

“Dazzle is truly a feel-good event, and we hope that anyone who feels passionately about the arts and children will join us for a great evening,” shared Michele Russo, President & CEO of Young Audiences.  “Not only will people have a terrific time, they’ll leave knowing that they’ve helped to bring much-needed arts programming to children across the region.”

To purchase event tickets, safari raffle tickets, and vote for your favorite dancer visit www.DazzleYA.org.  Individual tickets start at $250 and are inclusive of cocktails and dinner.  Safari raffle tickets are $100 each and only 300 tickets are available. Those who can’t attend can still vote for their favorite dancer at $10 per vote to help earn the coveted YA Disco Ball Trophy.

Past Dazzle VIP dancers include:

2013 – Chris Dagget, Sue Evans, John McConaughy, and Denise Wood Darder*

2014 – Barbara Coe*, Jill Jachera, Chris Long, and Bobby Mascia

2015 – Katie Hughes Redmond, Tamera Matteo, Jeff Perlman*, and Bryce Thompson

2016 – Carol Cronheim, Dan Fatton, Stacy Mattia*, and Michele Minter

2017 – Joanne Canady-Brown, Lew Gantwerk, D.A. Graham, Mark Murphy, and Michele Siekerka*

(* Denotes Dazzle Disco Ball Trophy Winner.)

Dazzle: Mad Hot Ballroom receives additional support from generous corporate sponsors, including Berkshire Bank, M&T Bank, Princeton Area Community Foundation, Princeton Partners, Fred Astaire Dance Studio of Princeton, PSE&G, Drinker Biddle, Mathematica Policy Research, Merrill Lynch, New Jersey Manufacturers, NJBIA, , NJM Insurance Group, NRG Energy, Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital, and UBS Financial Services.

For corporate sponsorship opportunities, to receive an invitation, or to vote for your favorite dancer, please contact Denyce Mylson at[email protected] or 609-243-9000 x202.

Additional photos available upon request.


About Young Audiences

Founded in 1973, Young Audiences New Jersey & Eastern Pennsylvania is the premier arts-in-education resource in the region, providing high-quality performances and artist-in-residence programs to schools in all 21 counties of New Jersey and the 7 easternmost counties of Pennsylvania. Young Audiences’ teaching artists represent all art forms—from dance and theater to music, language and visual arts. Since its founding, the organization has reached over 12 million children with essential arts education experiences.

A not-for-profit organization, Young Audiences’ programs are accessible to all socio-economic, ethnic, cultural, and geographic communities, and are designed to strengthen the arts in schools, meet local and state curriculum standards, involve families in arts activities, and enrich cultural life in New Jersey and Pennsylvania communities.

Young Audiences New Jersey & Eastern Pennsylvania is the first arts education organization designated as a major service organization by the New Jersey State Council on the Arts and, as part of the national network of Young Audiences, Inc., was awarded the National Medal of Arts by President Clinton. Young Audiences programs are made possible in part through a grant from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts/Department of State and Pennsylvania Council of the Arts. Additional funding comes from foundations, corporations and generous individuals. To learn more, visitwww.yanjep.org. To be “social” with us, join us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter @YANJEPA and on Instagram @young_audiences_njepa.