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'Stars' to shine in dance competition

Published 11:15 am, Sunday, February 24, 2013

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  • Donna Ormond and Lou Lopez are introduced at the Kweskin Theatre in Stamford on Thursday, February 14, 2013, during the kick-off of Curtain Call's Dancing with the Stars. The event will be held May 18, 2013, at the Palace Theatre. Photo: Lindsay Perry / Stamford Advocate
    Donna Ormond and Lou Lopez are introduced at the Kweskin Theatre in Stamford on Thursday, February 14, 2013, during the kick-off of Curtain Call's Dancing with the Stars. The event will be held May 18, 2013, at the Palace Theatre. Photo: Lindsay Perry

 

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STAMFORD -- When Kevin Leville was in college, he remembers going out to the clubs and dancing to disco music all night long.

"I was raised in the '70s, so whatever I learned, I learned from John Travolta," said Leville, the founder of Day 3 Health in New Canaan.

Leville hopes he will still have some of those moves, because yesterday he was named as one of 11 local "celebrities" for the sixth annual Curtain Call's Dancing with the Stars. The names were announced at a luncheon at The Kweskin Theatre on Newfield Avenue.

After the announcement, Leville and his partner, Collin Klaene, of Dance With Me in Stamford, stood near the stage, getting to know each other and planning their attack.

When asked how many times they'll have to rehearse, Klaene said, "As much as it takes." She said they'll meet the standard 20 times at her dance studio on Summer Street and probably several more times before the competition.

"It's like going to boot camp," Leville added.

The event will be held May 18 at The Palace Theatre downtown and the money raised will go toward paying for bills and repairs at The Kweskin Theatre and The Dressing Room Theatre nearby. About 800 to 1,000 people are expected to attend.

Donna Ormond, of Valerie Wilson Travel, will be dancing with Lou Lopez, of Latin Dance Moves Studio. Her husband is on Curtain Call's board and her daughter works on the costumes. She said the Kweskin main stage was falling apart until money was raised for repairs.

"It's an organization that's close to my heart," she said.

Contestant Andrew Rowley, head of communications and marketing at RBS, said he's on the board of commissioners for Stamford Downtown and was asked to get involved. Rowley, who is dancing with Kelly Butler of Arthur Murray Grande Ballroom of Greenwich, said his dance moves might be a little rusty.

"I did some (dancing) in college, but that was 30 years ago," Rowley said. "So I'm hoping it's like riding a bike. Hopefully you never forget."

After Lou Ursone, executive director of Curtain Call, took the stage at the Kweskin to announce the contestants, he said, "As Stamford's only nonprofit theater, we need things like this to keep the furnace going in cold winters like this."

In the dramatic fashion of the theater, Ursone had the stars come from one side of the stage and dancers come from the other. They paired up and each woman was given a rose.

The other stars were: Nicole Faugno, senior colorist at Noble Salon; Nancy Freedman, producer of Stamford All Schools Musical; John Hickey, of Richard's of Greenwich; Nagi Osta, owner of Nagi Jewelers; Fran Pastore, president and CEO of WBDC, Inc.; Cari Shapiro, vice president of Ross Stores; Jill Tomasello of Darien, director of Advanced Physical Therapy Center; and Dr. Nolan Zeide, of Bull's Head Pet Hospital in Stamford.

Ursone told them they have five years of great history behind them. He said they started holding the competition at the Kweskin, but moved to the Palace because 184 seats weren't enough.

Bill Evans, senior meteorologist for WABC-TV in New York, will be hosting the event. He has been a judge for the past few years.

Curtain Call, celebrating its 22nd season, is the community-based theater company at The Sterling Farms Theatre Complex on Newfield Avenue. Year-round productions and workshops are held at the two theaters, as well as outdoors on the lawn for its annual Shakespeare on the Green.

Dancing with the Stars is the organization's only major fund-raising event and is patterned after the hit television show. Judges' Choice Awards are presented in male and female categories, based on performances at the event.

Tickets and sponsorship start at $125, although there will be rear balcony seats selling for $50. Before the event, there will be a cocktail hour at UConn Stamford. For ticket information, call 203-329-8207.