Dancing Stars of Greenwich Charity Fundraiser for Abilis Set for Sept 17

Tickets are on sale for the popular Dancing Stars of Greenwich event hosted by The Fred Astaire Dance Studio of Greenwich as a charity dance off for the nonprofit Abilis. This is the fourth annual event and will be bigger and better than ever with celebrity judges and a terrific line-up of dancers! So grab your dancing shoes and get ready to see amazing waltzes, rumba’s, tangoes, twirls, some cha, cha, cha, and maybe even some moonwalking, and purchase your tickets to this fun annual event, held Saturday, September 17, 2022, at the Tamarack Country Club in Greenwich. Tickets sell out quickly every year, so reserve yours today at greenwichdancingstars.com.

Brendan Fraser, Toni Dovolani, Amy Montimurro, Ali Wentworth, Billy Blanks Jr. Contributed photo

This year’s event features celebrity judges Brendan Fraser, eight-time award winning actor; Lara Spencer, co-anchor for ABC’s Good Morning America; and Billy Blanks, Jr., creator and host of Dance It Out TV on Lifetime Television, choreographer and dancer.

Master of Ceremonies is Ali Wentworth, co-creator, star and co-executive producer of the “Head Case” series, former correspondent with the “The Oprah Winfrey Show.

“The Dancing Stars of Greenwich charity dance-off is one of our favorite events of the year,” said Amy Montimurro, CEO and president of Abilis in a release. “We’ve had such a great partnership with The Fred Astaire Studio of Greenwich for the past several years, along with the dancers and partners. The Dancing Stars of Greenwich event is such a special evening that brings everyone together for a fun dance-filled night! The funds raised support all of Abilis programs and services, which serve more than 800 individuals with disabilities and their families in Fairfield County.”

This fun event features local celebrities and community leaders performing choreographed dance routines, mirroring the hit TV show. Dancing pairs are sponsored by donations to Abilis, with the top fundraising team awarded the “People’s Choice Award.” A panel of celebrity judges and the audience decides who will win the coveted Mirrorball trophy. Guests will enjoy an evening of live entertainment, music, dancing, a champagne reception, hors d’oeuvres and a silent auction. 

Brendan and Afton Fraser, who act as a judge and dancer, have been big supporters of Dancing Stars of Greenwich and Abilis over the years. They are parents to a son with special needs and know personally how crucial programs and supports like Abilis offers are to families with children and adults with disabilities.

“We are proud to support Dancing Stars of Greenwich and Abilis to help raise funds for Abilis’ programs and services,” said Afton Fraser. “We know how much it means to a family to have an organization like Abilis that can help provide training, educational, social and employment opportunities for those with special needs. It can mean the difference between living an isolated life and one full of friends and with meaning. They are really a great organization, and we are happy to help in any way.”

Dancers at the event include: Brad and Erica Walker, of Greenwich – the first amateur couple to participate; Trevor Crow of Greenwich; Lindsay Darrell of Stamford; Afton Fraser of Greenwich, who has participated in every Dancing Stars of Greenwich event; Melissa Levin of Greenwich; Elaine Madonna of Greenwich, who won the People’s Choice Trophy last year; Greg Masone of Greenwich, Makeda Mays-Green of Stamford, Chris McCormack of Greenwich and Carly Samalin of Greenwich, who is the youngest dancer and an incoming Greenwich High School freshman on the Abilis Youth Board.

Each dancer is paired with a professional partner from The Fred Astaire Studio. Those dancers are:  Matthew Ames,  Clemens Lengenfelder, Santa Pavlovic, Christian Perry and Elmar Schmidt.

“Dancing Stars of Greenwich is full of all the fun, glitz and glamour of the hit TV show Dancing with the Stars!” noted Elmar Schmidt, owner and ballroom dance instructor of the Fred Astaire Dance Studio of Greenwich. “Local stars and leaders in the community have been training to compete just like on television. And, just like on the hit TV show, a panel of celebrity judges along with the audience, selects the winner who will win the coveted Mirrorball trophy.”

To reserve tickets or make a donation by supporting the dancers, please visit greenwichdancingstars.com.

Abilis is a 501c3 non-profit organization that supports more than 800 individuals with disabilities and their families from birth throughout their lives. Founded in 1951, Abilis is a leader in providing meaningful supports to the community in Fairfield County, Connecticut, in towns including Darien, Greenwich, New Canaan, Norwalk, Ridgefield, Stamford, Westport and Wilton. The organization has a long-standing reputation for individualized, high-quality care. For more information, visit www.abilis.us, or follow on Facebook @Abilis, Inc., Instagram @abilis_us or Twitter @Abilis.

Fred Astaire Dance Studio of Greenwich provides ballroom and Latin dance lessons to all ages and attracts participants from the Greenwich, Stamford and New Canaan, Connecticut,  areas, and Armonk, Harrison, White Plains, Port Chester, Rye, Mamaroneck and Scarsdale, New York, areas. There is no partner or experience necessary to enjoy ballroom dance lessons. Fred Astaire Dance Studio has made it its personal mission to touch as many lives with a passion for ballroom dancing. The Fred Astaire Dance Studio is one of the happiest, friendliest spots in town due to the welcoming and encouraging staff and atmosphere. Fred Astaire’s mission is to enrich the lives of everyone and anyone with dance. The organization genuinely strives to make dance a daily practice in the dance studio. Fred Astaire doesn’t just teach someone how to dance, they invite them to become their personal best – in their dancing and in all areas of their life. To learn more, visit fredastaire.com/greenwich.