Dance for Life is Another Sell-Out


Dance for Life’s sell-out crowd.

The Dance for Life benefit at the Harris Theater was a sell-out last week and now I know why!  It was one of the most joyous festivals of dance that I’ve attended and the crowd was so supportive of all of the dance companies’ amazing efforts.  Participating companies included Giordano Jazz Dance Chicago, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, The Joffrey Ballet, River North Chicago Dance Company and Same Planet Different World.  WGN’s Entertainment Critic and Reporter, Dean Richards, was the emcee/host for the 18th year and the crowd loved him. 


Co-chairs were Patti Eylar, Kevin McGirr and Joe Schroeder.  Producer/founder Keith Elliot started the event off with a bang….dancers everywhere performing multiple art forms–they were even dancing hanging onto fabric from the ceiling–a very joyous opening number with something for everyone that brought the crowd to their feet.   There was a tribute to Michael Jackson performed by local favorite Enrico Hampton. Hampton has been channeling Michael Jackson for over 20 years and he was perfect in every gesture and movement.  Matthew Adamczyk represented the Joffrey with his haunting solo performance of  “Aria.”




You better plan now on attending this wonderful event which will be back in August 2010.  It always sells out early and has grown to become the largest performance based AIDS fundraising event in the Midwest benefitting the AIDS Foundation of Chicago, Chicago House, AIDS Care, Center on Halsted and also individual members of the dance community who are in need.   For more info go to



Mike McRaith, Director of the Illinois Dept. of Insurance, Tara Flocco and her fiance, Senate-hopeful, Alexi Giannoulias.


With WGN’s Dean Richards who has hosted the event for 18 years.


Ken Sarnoff, Joffrey’s Artistic Director Ashley Wheater and Christine Ellis.


Quentin Schumacher, Michael Hawkey and the Palmer House’s David Brandt.


Kathy Schmalen-Abbene and her daughter Emily.


Jim Smith, Chris Long, Helen Melchior and Greg Hyder.


Pre-event cocktails on the Harris roof.


Peter Grigsby, Gary Metzner and George Weeks..


Michael Jackson impersonator, Enrico Hampton.


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Greg and Kasia Kay.


Phil Aulbach and John Kerney.


Macy’s John Bourgeois and friend.


View from the Harris rooftop.


The Joffrey Ballet was represented by Matthew Adamczyk.


Joyous opening number.

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