Thursday, May 16, 2013

"Dancing With the Stars" pro part of dance festival

Angela Prince, the organizer behind SouthPark's first outdoor dance festival, filled me in on all the exciting details about Dancing with the Queen City Stars. The benefit for the Humane Society of Charlotte is from 5 to 9 p.m. May 18 at Morrison, the shopping center at the corner of Colony and Sharon Roads. (The rain date is from 3 to 7 p.m. May 19).

Queen City Ballroom, Morrison and Earth Fare are sponsoring the event that will be held on what Angela says is a huge, in-the-street dance floor in front of Earth Fare. The celebrity guest is professional dancer Brian Fortuna. He starred in one of the first season's of "Dancing with the Stars," then switched to the British TV version, called "Come Strictly Dancing." (The photos in this blog are of Brian Fortuna.) Maria St. John of DanseDahling DJ Services will be the DJ. Emcees are WSOC-TV meteorologist Vicki Graf and Tommy Ballard of Hendrick BMW.

There is so much going on at this fundraiser that it's amazing that tickets are $5 (they can be bought in advance at Queen City Ballroom at Morrison, or at the event).

Here's the tentative schedule:

5 p.m.: The festival begins.

5:45-8 p.m.: Introductions and a street dance class with Brian Fortuna. Ballroom, swing and Latin dance performances by Queen City Ballroom professionals and amateur dancers. Two "Dancing For The Dogs and Cats" contests, where area dancers can earn their 60-seconds of dance fame for the Top Dog Award and Top Cat Award while raising money from the crowd. Then Brian Fortuna will do dance demos for the audience and host a Q&A about what it's like to work on dance TV.

8-9 p.m. Street dance party where everyone can join in the fun.

Interwoven in the festivities are surprise performances by some of Charlotte's best-known celebrities. They have donated their time over the past four weeks to learn a dance routine at Queen City Ballroom. We don't want to give all the surprises away, but two of them are WSOC-TV morning news anchor Sarah Rosario and Kat Country 96.9 FM talk show host Meg Butterly.

For more information, tickets or to register for the 60-seconds of fame “Dancing for the Dogs and Cats," contact Queen City Ballroom at 704-541-5440 or email  More details are at or

Follow Olivia on Twitter @oliviafortson


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