My first contact with Parker Pennington was when I accidentally tweeted him good luck in Sochi. Thinking he was Jason Brown by looking at tiny pictures on my phone… ok I have no excuse, and that was really embarrassing.
But Pennington has had an extremely impressive career of his own, winning US National Figure Skating titles at four different levels and two silver medals in international competition. More importantly, that oopsie tweet brought a really neat organization to my attention.
Skate Dance Dream is a project like no other, combining top level professional dancers and figure skaters together in a combined showcase, while highlighting over 100 youth performers. The whole group is embarking on a national tour, including stops in the Midwest. Skate Dance Dream lands in Mentor, OH tomorrow, stops in Charleston, SC, and returns this September for a final performance in Dayton.
Ok, so, world class skaters and nationally acclaimed dancers (most of whom have been seen on So You Think You Can Dance), and kids who skate really, really well, and more kids who dance really, really well… maybe it’s hard to picture it, but perhaps this will help:
The way Parker Pennington describes Skate Dance Dream is also way better than my description:
“Skate Dance Dream™ is more than just a show, it is a family, a life experience, an interactive and innovative atmosphere created to bring people together and celebrate the kid in each of us. Dancers and skaters in each tour location are given a chance to fulfill their dreams of performing with and learning from their heroes.”
I would imagine, though, that it’s equally inspiring for the pros to engage with young, aspiring artists who want to be them when they grow up. The point is, if I were within a stone’s throw of Mentor, Ohio, this is what I’d be doing tomorrow.