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Marilynn Larkin
Santos House
United States
New York City
New York
New York, NY

Disco Party Does a Good Turn

by Marilynn Larkin
August 15, 2008
Santos House
100 Lafayette Street
New York, NY 10013
See a report on the history of the Disco Party Fundraiser.
When I started taking hustle classes at Stepping Out Studios in NYC last September, I had no idea how much my social life would change. Within a few months, I was going to hustle parties at the studio with great trepidation, making sure to preface every dance with "I'm only a beginner…."

But very quickly, I started feeling comfortable with the other dancers and making new friends and acquaintances among an eclectic, free-wheeling group of people with varied backgrounds but one thing in common: We love the dance!

Next came club dancing in various venues — tough on those of us who have to get up early the next day, but worth even an hour or so for the fun of it. So when I heard there would be a disco party that doubled as a fundraiser, I thought I'd take the opportunity to see what it was like and, if I enjoyed myself, help spread the word through ExploreDance.com. In a nutshell: If you love great disco/funk/soul/R&B classics; if you feel comfortable in a high-energy crowd of friendly people; and if you enjoy knowing that part of your $12 admission will go to a good cause, then come to the next party and get on the list for future events.

Get Down, Up, and Around

Santos Party House was already packed when I got there, an hour after the 6 pm start. The Friday night (August 15) event drew a mixed and energetic crowd of people who loved disco dancing "back in the days" and welcomed an opportunity to recreate that experience. The music, played by DJ Omar Abdallah, was absolutely the best! The house was packed, and everyone was doing hustle, free-style, or voguing. It was also fun to do the hustle with some "new" people — those who don't come out for the weekly dances but are still good lead/follows.

NBT Fundraiser

But what really made this event special is that it was done for a cause. A portion of the proceeds go to the National Black Theatre, a 40-year-old organization that had a powerful impact on Ron Lester, founder and producer of Disco Party Fundraiser. Lester interned at NBT when he was a theatre student at NYU in the early 1990s. Lester attended a presentation by NBT founder Barbara Ann Teer and was tremendously impressed. He went on to volunteer for NBT and participate in many of the organization's spiritual and self-empowerment workshops. Because 2008 marks NBT's 40th anniversary, Lester is dedicating the funds raised from the disco parties to NBT. Previous recipients of the Disco Party Fundraiser donations include the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and the Lupus Foundation.

The next two Disco Party Fundraiser events will be held at Taj on Sept. 12 and Oct. 31. Come and enjoy!

Marilynn Larkin is a writer, editor, and hustle-dance enthusiast based in New York City. Contact her at MLEditor@gmail.com
The Disco Party Fundraiser team

The Disco Party Fundraiser team

Photo © & courtesy of Beverly Moore

DJ Omar Abdallah keeps the tunes spinning at the Disco Party Fundraiser

DJ Omar Abdallah keeps the tunes spinning at the Disco Party Fundraiser

Photo © & courtesy of Beverly Moore

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