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Monday, December 22, 2014
Southwest Louisiana ,
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A young gentleman takes the lead in last year's Colors of the Rainbow Team Match Ballroom Dance Classroom event the Lake Charles Civic Center. (Special to the American Press)

A young gentleman takes the lead in last year's Colors of the Rainbow Team Match Ballroom Dance Classroom event the Lake Charles Civic Center. (Special to the American Press)

Dancing Classrooms' annual dance competition Saturday

Last Modified: Thursday, May 15, 2014 11:40 AM

By Alex Onken / American Press

Get your dancing shoes ready.

This Saturday, the Whistle Stop-Dancing Classrooms will hold the 6th annual Colors of the Rainbow Team Match Ballroom Dance Competition. The event will take place at the Lake Charles Civic Center coliseum. Admission at the door will be $2 for adults and $1 for students under 18.

The event is a part of the Dancing Classrooms program, which teaches ballroom dancing in schools, to build social skills for children. The program, founded by Pierre Dulaine in the early 1990s, has been the subject of several films, including “Take the Lead” starring Antonio Banderas, “Mad Hot Ballroom” and “Dancing in Jaffa.”

Several schools will participate in the dance competition, including one school from Jeff Davis Parish and three from East Baton Rouge Parish.

Six of the best young gentlemen and six young ladies are selected to participate in the competition from each school.

The local schools after competing will compete against the Baton Rouge Parish schools. Different genres of dance will include the swing, fox trot, rumba, tango and merengue.

Mayor Randy Roach will begin the competition with opening remarks. Dana Keel from Citgo and Dalane Babineaux, the national network teaching artist for Dancing Classrooms, will co-host the event.

“Dancing Classrooms has brought out some of my feelings and personality that wouldn’t normally be shown in a normal classroom setting,” Madi Seward, an 11-year-old fifth-grader at T.S. Cooley Elementary, said in an essay written at the end of the program.

“My journey of dancing has been an unforgettable experience and has taught me so much.”

For more information on Dancing Classrooms, visit www.dancingclassrooms.com. For information on Whistle Stop-Dancing Classrooms, visit www.whistlestopkids.com.

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