Local Stars Preparing to Shine

Naperville’s stars will soon be shining again on the dance floor. On September 14th, eight local celebrities paired with a professional dancer will Samba, Rumba, and Cha-Cha during the 2nd annual “Dancing with the Celebrities” competition.

The event at Meson Sabika is a fundraiser for the Community Career Center and tickets are already sold-out.
In the first of two previews, NCTV17 taped the rehearsals of four of the participating couples, including McDonald’s Corporation employee Jacquelyn Howard. Her partner Michael Blanc of Celebrity Dance Studio in Downer’s Grove is helping her learn to samba to a song from the popular movie “Rio.”
“We have good moves, good rhythm,” said Howard. “It is butt-shaking fun,” added her partner Blanc.

Meanwhile our own anchor Dolly McCarthy is bringing some Latin flair to the competition. The two are busy fine-tuning their moves. While they won’t give away their song, they say they’re doing a fun Cha-Cha dance. McCarthy hopes having last year’s winner James Dutton of Arthur Murray Dance Center for a partner gives her an edge to come out on top.

“I won’t kid you, I have dusted off the mantel a little bit,” said McCarthy, joking about a place to put the coveted Mirror Ball Trophy.

But hoping to out-Cha-Cha them are Edward Hospital CEO Pam Davis and her instructor Joshua Torres of DuPage Dance Center. The two will be performing to a remake of “Save the Last Dance for Me” by Michael Bublè.

“What we’ve decided to do was to kind of make it as flashy as we could but as classic as we can so we’re not losing the element of cha-cha,” said Torres.

Illinois State Representative Mike Connelly hopes the audience likes the way he moves when he takes center stage with his partner Ann Garvey, also of Celebrity Dance Studio. The two are doing a Rumba to the Outkast song “The Way You Move.” Despite only having had a few rehearsals at the time, they’re confident they can take the whole competition.

“Dolly’s had 47 lessons and we’ve had three so we’re expecting great things out of Dolly,” said Connelly. “I know the expectations aren’t so high for me but stayed tuned and you’ll be in for a surprise.”

Tune in next week to Naperville News 17 as we introduce the remaining four contests participating in “Dancing with the Celebrities.”


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