Add 'Laurier’s Dancing with the Stars Champion' to the list of credentials and awards bestowed upon Laurier Golden Hawk Men’s Basketball Head Coach Peter Campbell
At the end of term Dance Open House for the Recreation Dance Classes Showcase last night, Coach Campbell joined fellow Laurier 'Stars' from the Department of Athletics & Recreation Dave Baxter
, Gareth Cunningham
, and PETER BAXTER
in a heated and intense dancing bout for the prestigious first-ever title!
Well, okay… maybe not that heated or intense unless you’re counting the beads of sweat streaming off the dancing stars’ foreheads.
Capitalizing on the popularity of the hit reality TV show 'Dancing with the Stars', the Golden Hawk Special Interest Recreation Team put together a motley crew of 'two-left-footed' Laurier Athletics & Recreation Department staff and paired each of them with incredibly talented and much more attractive Dance Instructors. Given about two-weeks to teach new dance moves and get them choreographed into a entertaining routine, Sarah Clare, Tara Dumas
, Andrea Palen
, and Natalie Rubino
had more than fair share of additional work on their shoulders with this bunch!
The performances took place in between sets of the Recreation Dance Class routines at the end of term Open House, where over 1,200 spectators gained entry with generous canned food donations to the local Food Bank to see the Dancing with the Stars competitors make every other participant, who were already fabulous, look that much better!
Judging the competition were Dance Instructors Caleigh Harvey, offering her supportive and sweet words of encouragement and congratulations, Catherine Lanuza, our Latin Dance Instructor who pointed out a lot of the technical good, bad, and, well, 'you tried your best' knowledge, and Hawk Desk Coordinator Eric Kleine
, who was, aside from some laughter, surprising almost left speechless (almost!).
Campbell and Sarah Clare kicked off the rounds of Dancing with the Stars with an entertaining medley of oldies, including Campbell. Not only did the Head Coach reel in his multi-talented instructor Sarah, but he reeled in the laughs and cheers from the audience in a definite crowd pleaser to kick things off!
Next up was Athletic & Recreation Director PETER BAXTER
and our very own Special Interest Coordinator Natalie Rubino
who pulled out some 60’s tunes and some slick choreography. The competition was on.
Stadium and Events Coordinator Dave Baxter
, decked in shades picked a beautiful girl out from the crowd to join him in his dance that included tunes from the hit 80’s film 'Dirty Dancing'. Luckily for him it was multi-talented Tara Dumas
. A definite highlight was the fancy leg-over-the-shoulder lift the two performed wonderfully!
Finally, talented and beautiful Andrea Palen
put together a smash routine of Irish Dancing for Coordinator of Programs Gareth Cunningham
to skip and step to in their black and red tartan attire.
The crowd and fellow dance instructors and class participants were so wonderfully supportive and really encouraged the 'stars' to put their best feet forward in an effort to entertain and compete. In the end, the overwhelming crowd response for Peter Campbell
and show-stopper Sarah Clare was enough to push them to the forefront, and the judges Caleigh, Eric, and Catherine named them the winners of this first ever showdown.
A big thank you to all the dance instructors who, let’s be honest, initially didn’t have much to work with! Amazingly, their supreme talents were up to the challenge as they pulled off well-choreographed and well-taught dance sets for this set of Laurier Staff, and looked so good doing it!
An additional thanks to Champion Sarah Clare, who not only did a great job enticing the Laurier Staff members to sign up for the challenge, but also took the initiative to take a little joking comment and turned it into an entertaining reality!