12th annual Dancing Under the Stars brings ballroom, jazz and hip hop to SCERA Shell August 25-26

During a half-hour break from the Capezio Summit ACE Awards dance convention in Long Beach this week, producer Kim Delgrosso described how excited she is with the talented group of artists she has assembled for the 12thannual Dancing Under the Stars at the SCERA Shell Outdoor Theatre.

“This year we’re putting together a show that should be high on popularity as it brings ballroom, hip hop, and jazz back to the forefront,” she says. “This high-energy concert is designed to appeal to both casual dance observers and seasoned dance audiences.”

Dancing Under the Stars will feature professional and talented area dancers Friday and Saturday, Aug. 25 and 26 at the SCERA Shell Outdoor Theatre, 699 S. State Street, in the center of SCERA Park in Orem. A pre-show at 7:15 p.m. will feature teams from area dance studios, and the concert at 8 p.m. will be the headline event that will showcase special guest dancers and singers.

General admission tickets are $20 for adults and $15 for children age 3-11 and seniors age 65 and older.  Reserved areas with a free chair are available for an additional cost.  They are available at www.scera.org, by calling 801-225-ARTS, at the SCERA (745 S. State St., Orem) or at the gate one hour prior to the performance.

Headline performers will include LA-based dance phenoms The Connection, the Debra Bonner Unity Gospel Choir, vocalist and sign language performer William Martinez as well as premier ballroom, jazz and hip hop teams from Delgrosso’s Center Stage Performing Arts Studios in Orem.

“The Connection is a group of seven best friends with amazing dance talents,” Delgrosso explains. “Several of them have performed and been choreographers on TV dance reality shows ‘Dancing With the Stars’ and ‘So You Think You Can Dance.’ You can expect some amazing ballroom, hip hop, salsa and some partnering power tricks. I would not be surprised if they have much of the crowd standing and cheering.”

The Bonner choir is the flagship of all its Unity Gospel Choirs and spreads the message that we are all God’s children, Delgrosso says. Its overarching message is that men are that they might have joy—something to definitely sing about. They will perform Friday only.

They are known by regional audiences because they have performed at the Utah Valley Event Center, were at the grand opening of the Eccles Theatre, performed with Alex Boyé at America’s Freedom Festival, opened for 10-time Grammy winners Take 6 and, among others, were featured at the Martin Luther King Day of Service at BYU.

Coming to perform from Los Angeles, William Martinez is a strong vocalist whose family is deaf. With his performance of “SIGNing the Song,” he combines American sign language with song to share the “inspirational story of growing up with in a deaf household, and discovering music.” He has had multiple performances opportunities, including touring with “Thank You for the Music: A Modern Tribute to ABBA, and performing as the lead male singer on Silversea Cruises where he performed opera, Broadway, pop, jazz and other musical styles. An Equity actor, he also has done extensive musical theater, especially in California.

“I saw him perform at a cabaret, and he gave a thrilling performance from beginning to the end,” Delgrosso says. “I sat there shocked at some of the things I was seeing. For me it was a (hip hop violinist) Lindsay Sterling moment. I knew I wanted to have him on one of my shows.”

She is also giving local dancers and groups the opportunity to show off their talents during a pre-show, including the ballroom dance team from Utah Valley University.

As a national ambassador of dance, Delgrosso travels the country to discover the current choreographers and dancers dominating the dance world. She often serves as a judge, and her own studio, Center Stage in Orem, edged out 176 other studios to be recognized as the National Studio of the Year at the Dance Awards in New York City.

The studio has produced many of today’s top professional dancers who can now be seen on televised dance shows, American Idol, in Disney shows, movies, on Broadway and in Las Vegas at Cirque de Soleil, Le Reve and the Donny and Marie show. Most recently 17 of her dancers were selected to compete on Jennifer Lopez’s “World of Dance.”

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