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Dancesport Fever

by Robert Abrams
September 30, 2000




Dancesport Fever - 9/30/2000


- comments and photographs by Robert Abrams

Dancesport Fever, an event at Long Island's The Vanderbilt, brought together Edward Simon and Michelle Officer, Gary and Diana McDonald, and Sanj Hira and Stephanie Faciano for an evening of great performances.

It took me two cabs and a train to get there, but it was worth it. Michelle was her usual soaring self. Ed was very good too, but when you are carrying around a dancer of such striking beauty on one hand, who is going to notice you? He pulled out the stops and a feather boa in their classic West Side Story number, but Michelle still left him speechless.

Gary and Diana were brilliant in both International Standard and Latin. Several audience members sitting near me commented appreciatively on their many costume changes.

Sanj and Stephanie are apparently a new pairing. Since they are both from Long Island, they were the hometown favorites at the show. They danced very well, and look like they have a lot of potential together.

The Vanderbilt had a very nicely appointed space, with a great floor. I have only two criticisms. First, the lighting was poor. The space is clearly a professional venue, and has no shortage of lighting instruments hanging from the ceiling. The lights should have been better focussed so that the performers would not have been in shadow half the time. Second, the wine I had was common hotel grade chardonnay. It was very acidic and tasted almost like vinegar. I know that my cab driver doesn't like the food there, but since I didn't have any of it, I can't comment on it.

There were several vendors at the event, giving the evening the feeling of a comp. There was also a set of twins dressed in light blue and white night gowns with tall fuzzy white hats who were hawking free vodka of some hitherto obscure brand. They were perfectly pleasant though, in both demeanor, accent and appearance, so they were just one more part of the over all spectacle.

The ample general dancing and many enthusiastic general dancers rounded out an excellent evening.


Ed and Michelle side by side






Michelle floats above it all






Gary and Diana






More Gary and Diana






General Dancing






More general dancing


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