Performance raises $10,845.70 to benefit Erin’s Hope for Friends
Roswell Dance Theatre presented its 30th Annual HUGS FROM YOUNG CHOREOGRAPHERS showcase and charity fundraiser in September. HUGS features 3 performances of student-choreographed works, performed by company members ages 10 through 18. Soloist Company dancers begin work on this impactful event in June, selecting their cast and music, then creating original choreographies for the fall performances. All proceeds from the event are donated to a charity. This year, the Soloists selected Erin’s Hope for Friends as the recipient of the funds.
Erin’s Hope for Friends is a nonprofit organization that makes a difference in the lives of teens and young adults with Asperger’s Syndrome and High Functioning Autism Spectrum (HFAS). Erin’s Hope for Friends operates “e’s club,” a unique center focused on facilitating positive social interactions for HFAS teenagers. Located in North Fulton County, the club features an open and inviting space where local HFAS kids hang out and make meaningful connections and lasting friendships. The funds raised at HUGS will support the opening of a second location of “e’s club” in Acworth, Georgia this year and the upcoming chapters around the country.
In addition to benefitting charities for 30 years, HUGS FROM YOUNG CHOREOGRAPHERS benefits the choreographers and their casts in so many ways. The event is under the direction of Mary Lynn Taylor, Associate Director of the Roswell Dance Theatre, but, it is managed by the Soloist Company members. They enjoy creative freedom in developing their original choreographies and completely manage teaching their piece to the performers. They learn organizational skills and time management. Soloist member Carson Hart commented, “We put so much time into it. It is great to see that hard work really pays off.”
Choreographer Madelyn Bickel added, “For this year, it was very special that we got to go to see the charity. We played video games, air hockey, pool and had fun making friends. This was unique from other years because we could easily relate to what the charity does and how it impacts the community.”
“It is very uplifting and also a new opportunity for us. We have to take on the responsibility for the piece and also to raise money, promote the event, advertise it and speak about it to others,” commented choreographer Keara Walsh.
Thank you to all of the patrons, families, and business sponsors who supported this year’s HUGS FROM YOUNG CHOREOGRAPHERS performances!
Roswell Dance Theatre is the resident performing company of the Tolbert Yilmaz School of Dance, founded 38 years ago. To learn more about Roswell Dance Theatre, visit http://www.TYSOD.com To learn more about Erin’s Hope for Friends, visit, http://erinshopeforfriends.org
****Photos by Eric Yap