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Ozanam Come Dancing 2017 – Raises a staggering €41,150!

THANK YOU all for helping us to raise an incredible €41,150 for our summer youth programmes in Ozanam House Resource Centre

HUGE congratulations to Joanne & Rory dancing ‘The Jive’ – our Ozanam Come Dancing Winners 2017!

WHAT A NIGHT! Ozanam Come Dancing 2017 was held in Liberty Hall on Friday 10th March. A sell out crowd filled the venue and they were wowed and amazed by our 12 incredible volunteer couples who danced the Salsa, the Tango, the Charleston, the Jive, Disco and Paso Doble among others.

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Our amazing host Brendan Courtney was joined this year by our dance expert and world ballroom champion David Roberts and of course our celebrity judges Katherine Lynch, sharing her new found expertise from her performances in ‘Dancing with the Star’s and the music legend Mary Black, who also treated us to an iconic musical performance on the night. What a treat it was for us all!

Our volunteer dancers came on board from near and far. We welcomed staff and volunteers from within Ozanam House, staff from SVP House – shared services and East region offices and from some of our supporting companies including McCann FitzGerald, Abbey Capital, Symantec, Danceworld, AIB and Business in the Community Ireland. A HUGE THANK YOU goes to them all for their hard work, commitment and support. They put on a truly incredible show on the night and amazed everyone with what can be achieved after only 9 weeks of lessons.

OUR WINNERS – Massive congratulations goes to Joanne and Rory who danced ‘The Jive’ and are Ozanam Come Dancing Winners 2017!

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A huge thank you also to all of our dancers sponsors and to the companies who donated goods and services to the event, to all of our volunteer helpers on the night and to everyone involved for all of your efforts and support in making Ozanam Come Dancing 2017 an incredibly successful evening. We look forward to seeing you all on the stage next year!

Thanks also to Orla Keeshan at White Lane Photography for volunteering her time and taking some incredible photos of the event which can be viewed on a photo album here:

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Meet Our Special Guests!

Our fifth year of Ozanam Come Dancing has us welcoming back some familiar faces but we’re also delighted to have some new special guests on board too! All are excited to be a part of the show!

Brendan PicBack again for his third year as our show’s host, we have Brendan Courtney. Brendan is a broadcaster and a fashion designer. Brendan has produced and presented countless TV series including BBC’s “The Clothes Show” as well as RTE’s ‘Off The Rails’ which he fronted for 7 years. In 2012 Brendan co-launched women’s wear collection “Lennon Courtney” which is now exclusively available at Dunnes Stores. His women’s fashion & lifestyle platform & app www.frockadvisor.com is the number one destination for smart, sassy intelligent women. Most recently he launched the fashion discovery app “fafinder” with lots of boutiques to be found in one place.

 

Katherine Lynch 2017 - Black and WhiteAnother returning face who will be scoring our dancer’s moves is Katherine Lynch. Katherine is best known as a comedian and television personality with many smash hit shows over the years This is her third year on the judging panel so she is amost our resident pro and now fresh off Ireland’s ‘Dancing With The Stars’ where she was hugely successful, we look forward to her a new perspective going into this year’s show. She now has firsthand experience of the time and hard work it takes to pull off a great dance routine!

 

New to our panel this year is David Roberts. He’s the one who will be looking to see if our dancer’s toes are pointed and that they’re in step. David has danced for most of his life and has been All Ireland senior ballroom dancing champion 13 times and can boast the title of US Open classic ballroom champion to his name. David has also appeared on the original Come Dancing series on the BBC and is currently a championship adjudicator and a member of the All Ireland board of ballroom Dancing.

 

Mary-BlackLast but certainly not least, we are ecstatic to be welcoming Mary Black as the final judge on our panel. For the last 25 Years Mary has been a dominant presence in Irish music, both at home and abroad. She has shared stages, tv shows and recording studios with some of the most revered performers of her time. Mary has been a great supporter of SVP over the years and performed on this year’s Christmas CD in aid of the Society. A little birdy also tells us that Mary may even share her amazing talent with us and sing a few songs!!

We hope you have your tickets for what will be a great show!

 

 

Ozanam Come Dancing Event Coordinators – Final Preparations!

With just ONE WEEK until Ozanam Come Dancing 2017, our event coordinators, Roberta and Claire, are hard at work behind the scenes getting the final details ready. Of course this includes making sure the winner’s trophies are nice and clean and score cards are ready! They’ve travelled many miles to be apart of this big event, as Roberta is from Milan, Italy and Claire is from Michigan in the United States. They’re looking forward to seeing who will be triumphantly holding up the trophies on the night of the show!

Claire, Roberta, Trophies

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Get To Know Our Dancers – Competition is heating up!

Our dancers our in their final week of practice before the week of the show. They’ve come a long way since the beginning but are still rehearsing vigorously to perfect their steps. This week we sat down with them to get a sense of how they’re feeling about their upcoming performance.

 

Dariusz & Deirdre

Deirdre & DariuszWhat three words best describe your dance?

Deirdre: Fast, exciting and cheeky

How do you feel now compared to the beginning of rehearsals? (more confident, more nervous?)

Deirdre: Much more confident! Dariusz and I have really become good friends!

Who are you most looking forward to seeing in the audience on the night?

Deirdre: My fiance. I want to make him proud.

Click here to support Dariusz and Deirdre!

 

Shane & Pauline

Pauline & ShaneWhat three words best describe your dance?

Shane: Fast, complex, great

Pauline: Fun, energetic, Latino

How do you feel now compared to the beginning of rehearsals? (more confident, more nervous?)

Shane: More confident….which makes me more nervous!!

Pauline: Excited about the night!

Who are you most looking forward to seeing in the audience on the night?

Shane: My work colleagues, providing the dance goes well!!

Pauline: Jessica, my daughter

Click here to support Shane and Pauline!

 

Greg & Aoife

Aoife & GregWhat three words best describe your dance?

Aoife: Energetic – Risky – Amusing

How do you feel now compared to the beginning of rehearsals? (more confident, more nervous?)

Aoife: If I’m honest, I’m worried that our friends and family could be disappointed. We have made a lot of hype about the show and have a lot of people coming to see us. I feel like the dance will be over so fast because of the way the song is edited. That said, I’m sure they will see the bigger picture and realise it is all for a good cause!

Who are you most looking forward to seeing in the audience on the night?

Aoife: My grandmother. She just turned 90 2 weeks ago and is making a special effort to come along to the show – luckily there is wheelchair access.

Click here to support Greg and Aoife!

 

 

Johnny & Helen

Johnny & HelenWhat three words best describe your dance?

Johnny: Elegant, fast, but smooth!

Helen: Elegant, smooth and hopefully graceful!

How do you feel now compared to the beginning of rehearsals? (more confident, more nervous?)

Johnny: Now that we know the whole routine it is better – just need lots more practice!

Helen: Much better now that we have the whole routine, although we still need to have a full run through to the final track!

Who are you most looking forward to seeing in the audience on the night?

Johnny: My Mum and Dad – they are great dancers and it is lovely watching them dance at family get together’s. I hope I do them proud.

Helen: My daughters – I think they will be very surprised watching me on stage as I am more used to watching them in various plays and shows in the past!

Click here to support Johnny and Helen!

 

 

Brian & Ciara

Ciara & BrianWhat three words best describe your dance?

Brian: Fun, hilarious and fast

How do you feel now compared to the beginning of rehearsals? (more confident, more nervous?)

Brian: Much more confident and more relaxed about it all

Who are you most looking forward to seeing in the audience on the night?

Brian: All my family and friends

Click here to support Brian and Ciara!

 

Kevin & Margo

Margo & KevinWhat three words best describe your dance? 

Intense, Exciting & Vivacious.

How do you feel now compared to the beginning of rehearsals? (more confident, more nervous?)

We are both more confident now we know the steps but the thoughts of Liberty Hall is actually terrifying! – Will need something to calm the nerves!

Who are you most looking forward to seeing in the audience on the night?

We have great support from all our family and friends and a big thank you to them all for buying  the tickets.  Our grandson Craig is also coming along so it will be awesome to have him there. 

Click here to support Kevin and Margo!

 

Anthony & Lada

Lada& AnthonyWhat three words best describe your dance?

Jazzy, energetic, old-school

How do you feel now compared to the beginning of rehearsals? (more confident, more nervous?)

More nervous, but at the same time more confident and excited

Who are you most looking forward to seeing in the audience on the night?

Anthony: my family!

Lada: My little sister

Click here to support Anthony and Lada!

Get To Know Our Dancers – Howdy, Partner

This week we chatted with our dancers about their partners. We have some couples that have been together for years, couples that work together and others that only met each other for the first time at their first rehearsal! All couples are getting along great. Read on to see what they have to say and for some funny stories!

Johnny & Helen

Helen & Johnny 2Did you know your dance partner before this experience?

Johnny: Helen and I work together in SVP Shared Services, and we have known each other since I joined the Society in 2012.  

Helen: Yes I work with Johnny in SVP Shared Services so we’ve known each other for over 4 years.

Were you surprised at how good (or bad) your partner’s dancing skills are?

Johnny: Helen is a great dancer but she doesn’t realise it yet!  Our confidence is growing each week which is great.

Helen: I was not surprised at how good Johnny is at dancing as a little bird has told me he had danced at the last Christmas Party and was a lovely mover!

What do you like most about your partner?

Johnny: Helen is very enthusiastic about the dancing and always really chirpy – so even if it has been a tough day at work, doing some dancing practice after work is good fun because of Helen.

Helen: His sense of fun and willingness to try something new for a good cause.

Any funny stories from rehearsals so far?

Johnny: We tried our first lift last night and it was great!  I still think that Helen should lift me as a part of the routine- people would pay good money to see that!

Helen: Yes, we have been rehearsing just after work in the big Conference Room in SVP each evening when we can and there are a few people who are wondering what on earth is going on!

Click here to support Johnny and Helen!

 

Kevin & Margo

 Margo & KevinDid you know your partner before this experience?

Kevin and I know each other since we were teenagers and have been married for 33 years.

Were you surprised at how good (or bad) your partner’s dancing skills are?

Kevin: Margo is loving every minute of it! She is so enthusiastic and must have Spanish Ancestors somewhere?

Margo:  Kevin says he has 2 left feet – not true! He is doing so well and I am really impressed at how quickly he has taken to it.

What do you like most about your partner?

Kevin: Margo’s enthusiasm and passion is contagious.

Margo: Kevin has a great sense of humour and we end up laughing so much it is a wonder we are getting any dancing done. 

Any funny stories from rehearsal so far?

‘There was this one step June was trying to show us where she needed to lift her arms.  Kevin missed the point completely and was trying to keep her hands down.  A battle of strength – and June won!!  It doesn’t sound funny now but it was hilarious at the time.  

 Click here to support Kevin and Margo!                                     

 

Anthony & Lada

Lada & AnthonyDid you know your dance partner before this experience?

 No, we only met at the first rehearsal!

Were you surprised at how good (or bad) your partner’s dancing skills are?

Anthony: I was glad to see Lada caught onto the moves so quickly.

What do you like most about your partner?

Anthony: She’s good Craic, which is important for making sure it’s an enjoyable experience.

Click here to support Anthony and Lada!

 

Greg & Aoife 

Aoife & GregDid you know your dance partner before this experience?

Aoife: Yes, we are boyfriend and girlfriend!

Were you surprised at how good (or bad) your partner’s dancing skills are?

Aoife: I was pleasantly surprised at Greg. He claims he can’t dance but he give its 100% every week and doesn’t take himself so seriously. I honestly thought he would have given up by now, I’m very proud of him.

What do you like most about your partner?

Aoife: He remembers my parts of the dance so when we are practicing, he reminds me what to do.

Any funny stories from rehearsals so far?

Aoife: Nothing much – I almost hit him in the nose during a spin and now he always says ‘WATCH MY NOSE’, which June and I find hilarious. Greg also ripped his trousers during a move (a can’t say which move – it will be a surprise!)

Click here to support Greg & Aoife!

 

Brian & Ciara

Ciara & BrianDid you know your dance partner before this experience?

Ciara: Yeah I’ve known Brian for nearly 3 years through college

Were you surprised at how good (or bad) your partner’s dancing skills are?

Ciara: Honestly yes! I thought Brian would be really stiff and awkward but he’s not actually too bad.

What do you like most about your partner?

Ciara: I like how even though he says he hates spending time with me I know deep down he really loves it!

Any funny stories from rehearsals so far?

Ciara: We always have a laugh though when we practice   

Click here to support Brian and Ciara!        

 

Dariusz & Deirdre

Deirdre & DariuszDid you know your dance partner before this experience?

Deirdre: NO, we were introduced in work! Now we’re best friends!!

Were you surprised at how good (or bad) your partner’s dancing skills are?

Deirdre: I wasn’t surprised about how good Dariusz was, his hips dont lie!

What do you like most about your partner?

 Deirdre: He is super competitive, just like me!

Any funny stories from rehearsals so far?

Deirdre: Too many. We laugh too much to pick a funny story!      

Click here to support Dariusz and Deirdre!      

Rory & Joanne

Joanne & RoryDid you know your dance partner before this experience?

 Rory: Yes, we were in school together. So quite a long time :)

Were you surprised at how good (or bad) your partner’s dancing skills are?

Rory: No, not really, I knew she would be good and I was right 

What do you like most about your partner?

Rory: She has a great personality and positive attitude, I really enjoy dancing with her.

Any funny stories from rehearsals so far?

Rory: I tried to slide on the ground with my arms by my side…. My face nearly hit the ground, I hardly slid at all and I looked like a seal sprawled out on the ground. Joanne was a witness and it must have been bad because she couldn’t stop laughing.

Click here to support Rory and Joanne!

Get To Know Our Dancers – Ozanam House Involvement

Brian & Ciara:

Ciara & BrianHow did you end up getting involved in Ozanam Come Dancing?

Ciara: Brian is very involved with VDP in college so he roped me into it. I’m so glad he did though!

What three words would you use to describe Ozanam House or the people that work there?

Generous, Caring, thoughtful

Click here to support Brian and Ciara!

 

 

Greg & Aoife:

Aoife & Greg 2How did you end up getting involved in Ozanam Come Dancing?

Aoife: I did a service day for SVP on behalf of GLG. This is when I heard more about Ozanam House and what important work they do. When I heard they were looking for dancers, I got so excited and emailed immediately, I assumed I was too late to get involved. I was so happy when I got positive feedback on my application. Getting Greg involved was easy once he heard what a great cuase it was for.

What three words would you use to describe Ozanam House or the people that work there?

Central – Educative – Inspiring

Click here to support Greg and Aoife!

 

 

Johnny & Helen:

Helen & Johnny 2How did you end up getting involved in Ozanam Come Dancing?

 Johnny: Helen really wanted to do it and talked about it for months.  Helen has a kind heart and would do anything for anybody – so agreeing to be her partner was my way of repaying Helen for all her kindness that she has shwon to me since I joined SVP.

Helen: Tony asked me if I wanted to get involved a few years ago and it took a while for me to pluck up the courage to say yes! I’m so glad I have and that Johnny came forward to be my dance partner.

What three words would you use to describe Ozanam House or the people that work there?

Johnny: Friendly, colourful, and inspirational.

Helen: Fun, encouraging and inspiring!

Click here to support Johnny and Helen!

Announcing a Very Special Guest Performance Ozanam Come Dancing 2017

 

Our BIG annual Fundraiser OZANAM COME DANCING is back and will be held on Friday March 10th next in Liberty Hall, Dublin 1

We are delighted to announce that we will be joined on the night with a
SPECIAL GUEST PERFORMANCE by MARY BLACK!Mary-Black

 Tickets are just €20 and can be purchased from the
Central Ticket Bureau.
You can also see details event and the Venue location in our
Upcoming Events page.

12 volunteer couples including volunteers and staff from the centre, East Region and National offices will entertain us for the evening, and with Brendan Courtney as our host, Katherine Lynch as one of our judges, sharing her new found expertise from ‘Dancing with the Stars’ and now with Mary Black, not only sharing her musical talents at half time but sharing her wisdom as our second celebrity judge, it should be a great nights entertainment.

You can follow all our dancers progress, and support your favourite couples, you can also find their profiles links up at the top of the page.

Don’t miss out on your chance for a great night out while supporting our Summer Youth Programmes in Ozanam House, helping us provide places for children and young people from the north inner city over the summer months.

DON’T MISS OUT….GET YOUR TICKETS NOW!

Get To Know Our Dancers!

Our 12 couples are now into their fourth week of rehearsal and they’re starting to get the hang of it! We asked them a few questions about their dancing background and what they’re looking forward to for the next few weeks before the competition really heats up. Read on for their answers!

 

Brian & Ciara

Ciara & Brian

What’s your level of dance experience prior to Ozanam Come Dancing?

Brian: None apart from showing Ciara real ballet in nightclubs.

Ciara: I did ballet for 15 years but haven’t done it in a while so can’t say I’ll be graceful on the night.

What’s been the most challenging part of the dancing so far and what’s been the most exciting?

Brian: Most challenging part has definitely been trying not to be too much better than Ciara. Most exciting part is probably how great I will be on the night.

Ciara: Most challenging would have to be remembering all the steps! Most exciting is hearing stories about the night and what it will be like.

What are you looking forward to most at the moment?

Brian: At the moment I am probably looking forward to having all the steps done so we have some idea how good I will be.

Ciara: Getting the costumes organized and seeing how much money we can raise for such a great cause!

Click here to support Brian and Ciara!

 

Shane & Pauline

Pauline & Shane

What’s your level of dance experience prior to Ozanam Come Dancing?

Shane: I have never danced before so this is a completely new experience for me!

Pauline: Well, I love dancing! But I had a little bit of dancing experience in my past when I was quite young.

What’s been the most challenging part of the dancing so far and what’s been the most exciting?

Shane: Learning the steps, getting into the rhythm of dancing has been the most challenging part so far. Each week we are learning something new so that is very exciting.

Pauline: I suppose the most challenging part is the steps and remembering them!

What are you looking forward to most at the moment?

Shane: The lessons have been great and I look forward to it each week.

Pauline: Looking forward to completing the routine and learning to enjoy the dance

Click here to support Shane and Pauline!

 

Margo & Kevin

Margo & Kevin

What’s your level of dance experience prior to Ozanam Come Dancing?

Weddings and parties – in other words none!

What’s been the most challenging part of the dancing so far and what’s been the most exciting?  

The whole experience is so exciting and we are having a complete blast.  The most challenging part is a lift we are doing which works wonderfully at times and no so at other times!!

What are you looking forward to most at the moment?

Every week we are learning something new so we are actually looking forward to when we have the complete dance under our belt…  then we can practice, practice practice!!!

Click here to support Margo and Kevin!

 

Alice & Keith

Alice & KeithWhat’s your level of dance experience prior to Ozanam Come Dancing?

Alice is an experienced nightclub dancer. She has no formal dance experience…but that doesn’t seem to stop her (honestly, you should see the videos from Croatia last summer). 

Keith has basically never danced a day in his life. He openly admits to having no rhythm and two left feet.

What’s been the most challenging part of the dancing so far and what’s been the most exciting?

For Keith, the whole dancing thing has been very challenging. In particular, he has great difficulty doing a twirl without falling over. For Alice, the most challenging part has been keeping a straight face and not laughing when Keith tries to do a twirl.

The most exciting part for Alice was possibly when Keith did a twirl for the first time without falling over. The most exciting part for Keith was when he was mistaken for John Travolta one night when practicing his moves in Coppers… only messing, it was when he did his first twirl!

What are you looking forward to most at the moment?

Both parties are looking forward to lifting the cup on the night of the show. And by lifting the cup, they don’t mean winning, they mean drinking lots and lots of G&Ts/pints at the after party. They hope to see loads of their fans there (i.e. friends and family) and really look forward to a great night out with everyone and, of course, raising lots of money for this very worthwhile cause.

Click here to support Alice and Keith!

 

Joanne & Rory

Joanne & RoryWhat’s your level of dance experience prior to Ozanam Come Dancing?

Joanne: I did some dancing growing up, and some Lindy Hop and ballroom a few years ago.

Rory: I have no real dance experience except for dancing on the weekend on nights out.

What’s been the most challenging part of the dancing so far and what’s been the most exciting?

Joanne: So far the most challenging part of the dancing has been getting used to the thought of performing in front of people! The most exciting part has been the dance routine itself – it gets more fun each week and we don’t know what to expect when we come in each class.

Rory: Most challenging part is putting my feet in the right places and remembering the moves. I just love learning the next part of the dance each week. And the actual show. I’m nervous now.

What are you looking forward to most at the moment?

Joanne: At the moment I’m looking forward to learning the full dance, putting everything together and seeing everyone dance – can’t wait to see what everything is like on the night!

Rory: Getting the full dance moves finished and RIGHT. It is great fun.

Click here to support Joanne and Rory!

 

Lada & Anthony

Lada & AnthonyWhat’s your level of dance experience prior to Ozanam Come Dancing?

Lada: I have learned some basics in a ballroom dancing course back in the Czech Republic years ago, but haven’t done anything since. 

What’s been the most challenging part of the dancing so far and what’s been the most exciting?

Lada: For me, the most challenging thing in the last few weeks has been to find the time to practice outside of our scheduled rehearsals. Exciting is the part when I watch the video that June takes of us dancing at the end of each rehearsal where the routine is getting longer and longer each time!

What are you looking forward to most at the moment?

Lada: Chatting with the other guys in the kitchen before we start every week. And right now also to the moment when we finally finish our routine and will be able to start polishing it up! :)

Click here to support Lada and Anthony!

 

Helen and Jonathan

Helen & Johnny 2What’s your level of dance experience prior to Ozanam Come Dancing?

 Helen: I have no experience of ball room dancing so very much starting from scratch.

Johnny: Does dancing at Weddings count!  Thankfully I got to learn a few moves from my Mum and sisters when I was growing up!

What’s been the most challenging part of the dancing so far and what’s been the most exciting?

 Helen: The most challenging is trying to remember all the steps and the timing and the most exciting is learning the whole sequence and how it fits with the music – once the timing is right of course!

Johnny: The most challenging aspect is trying to find time to practice!  The most exciting part is seeing how the dance is coming together – it really is good fun and I am enjoying it a lot more than I had expected!

What are you looking forward to most at the moment?

Helen: Finally getting all the steps right and hopefully not making too many mistakes on the night!

Johnny: Ahh, it has to be the costumes… and well, also the opportunity to lift Helen as part of the dance routine!

Click here to support Helen and Jonathan!

 

Johanne and David

Johanne & DavidWhat’s your level of dance experience prior to Ozanam Come Dancing?

Johanne: I have not had much experience with dancing apart from some disco dancing as a child. My adult experience was more having fun on nightclub dance floor.

What’s been the most challenging part of the dancing so far and what’s been the most exciting?

Johanne: The whole dance has been challenging but yet enjoyable. Learning the steps and trying to keep with the time of the song has been the biggest challenge to date. However having great fun with Dave and June in the practice sessions

What are you looking forward to most at the moment?

Johanne: Completing the dance and gaining more confidence with it.

Click here to support Johanne and David!

 

Aoife and Greg

Aoife & GregWhat’s your level of dance experience prior to Ozanam Come Dancing?

Our level of dance prior to the competition was basic. I have done some dancing when I was younger and am partial to a bop of a Saturday night! However, Greg literally has two left feet!

What’s been the most challenging part of the dancing so far and what’s been the most exciting?

Our most challenging part of the dancing so far is getting the time to practice. We both work full-time jobs with long commutes and have a baby at home so it is busy, busy, busy! The most exciting is the dance lessons, we have such a laugh with June!

What are you looking forward to most at the moment?

What we are most looking forward to at the moment is telling everyone (friends and family) about the show. They will be so shocked when they hear we are doing this. I can’t wait for them all to come along and see how much work we have put in!

Click here to support Aoife and Greg!

 

Ross and Aisling

Aisling & RossWhat’s your level of dance experience prior to Ozanam Come Dancing?

 Little to none, some dance lessons as a child. Most dance experience is out on the town on a Saturday night!

What’s been the most challenging part of the dancing so far and what’s been the most exciting?

 The most challenging part is definitely remembering the routine. The most exciting part is starting to see it come together.

What are you looking forward to most at the moment?

We are looking forward to learning the whole routine and seeing what the end product looks like!!!

Click here to support Ross and Aisling!