This Saturday, March 1 at Fremont Studios, eight notable Seattleites will don their dancing shoes and boogie down for Seattle Dances!, a benefit for Plymouth Housing Group (PHG), an organization that helps secure housing for the homeless. This is the fifth year that PHG has held Seattle Dances!, which pairs celebrity dancers with professional dancers from the Century Ballroom, for a night of fabulous moves, dazzling costumes and good times and fundraising. Last year, our beloved Flash Talk columnist, Ernie Pino, chair danced his way through the competition (valiantly, despite a torn tendon) and this year, Duell Fisher, owner of Team Photogenic (an event photography business that we work with a lot at the magazine) is one of the dancers and I thought I’d check in on him and see how it’s going. Full disclosure: I’m one of the judges for the Seattle Dances!, and despite my working relationship with Duell, plan on being completely impartial and equally charitable to all the dancers. I’m certainly no expert, but I will be paying very close attention to the costume with the most prolific use of sequins.
AB: Prior to this year, what was your involvement with Seattle Dances! and PHG?
DF: I got to know the PHG eight years ago when the Seattle Hotel Association designated them as the beneficiary for their fundraising event The Evening of Hope. Then Team Photogenic was hired to photograph the event and I decided it would be great as a SEEN LIVE event. Five years later we are still doing the live webcast of the dancers performing and interviews with winners and the PHG leadership.
AB: What was your reaction when they asked you to be a dancer this year?
DF: They asked me after the first year to be a dancer for them, but I wanted to wait to get the coverage from the rehearsals and Seen LIVE in order before committing to be a dancer, so this was the time to say YES!
AB: What does the charity mean to you?
DF: Plymouth Housing Group is one of the few non-profits that create a home and support services for the homeless adults in Seattle. They go beyond just providing a place to sleep—they offer them a way to change their lives.
AB: What style are you dancing?
DF: Tango with a twist!
AB: Ooh, intriguing.
AB: Can you give us a hint about your outfit?
DF: The colors of passion with sequins.
AB: Who is your partner?
DF: Erica Atnip, a tango dancer, instructor and she is AWESOME!
AB: What has surprised you during this process?
DF: That I can actually dance to real choreography!
AB: Have you started to get nervous?
DF: Yes, just yesterday when I was Fremont Studios for a walk through and was on the stage looking out where the audience will be and thinking OMG, don't screw this up!
AB: How do you intend to sway the judges to vote for you? Just kidding.
DF: Team Photogenic photographers will be there photographing the event (including the judges) and well, they can either make them look really, really good (meaning I need a Cyber Choice Mirror Ball trophy to take home) or they can make them look really, really bad! Wink, wink.
AB: Anything else you'd like to add?
DF: Win or lose, raising money for Plymouth Housing Group is the reason we all are there. And the dancing part is pretty awesome too, so VOTE for Erica and me online for the Cyber Choice award!