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2012 Dance Competitors Rev. Richard Honeywell of St. Paul Community Baptist Church & Naeemah Brown of Cradle -N-the Rock
2012 Dance Competitors Rev. Richard Honeywell of St. Paul Community Baptist Church & Naeemah Brown of Cradle -N-the Rock Dance Ensemble

The Stars of New York Dance is a charitable, thrilling and judged dance competition for New York City leaders, similar to "Dancing with the Stars," that raises dance education funds for children from low-income communities to help them develop discipline, confidence and self-esteem to succeed in school and in life.  

Seven notable New Yorkers ("The Stars") partner with seven principal dance artists ("The Dancers") from local dance organizations in New York City.  The Stars engage in weeks of rigorous yet riveting dance training to learn a three- to four- minute dance routine choreographed by their dance partner. The night of the event, the seven couples compete to perform the fiercest dance duet and are judged on originality, creativity, technique, showmanship and costumes. The couple that receives the highest judged score wins a $5,000 Dance Access Award to provide five or more children from low-income communities in New York City with a free year of high-quality dance education and training with their respective dance organization. The other competing dance organizations receive a $1,000 Dance Access Award.

The Stars of New York Dance seeks to challenge and overcome the negative effects that plague children in need from underserved New York City neighborhoods. These children have increased exposure to urban risks such as crime, drugs, truancy and gangs. The Stars of New York Dance is committed to impacting the lives of children from these communities by providing them with high-quality dance and arts education that builds character, regardless of the children’s circumstances, and keeps them out of the path of these urban risks.

Support for the arts is often considered expendable, but we know the power of the arts to transform lives. By providing children from low-income communities with access to innovative arts programming and curriculum, they have access to a creative and constructive means of self-expression that builds character and are ensured a brighter future with boundless opportunities.