Share-a-Smile Dance Program Raises Funds for Senior Citizens

Chicago IL: Share-a-Smile Chicago (SASC) hosted its annual fundraiser to aid senior citizens with an evening of entertainment on Friday, March 16, 20013 at India House Banquet Hall at 1521 West Schaumburg Road Schaumburg, Ill. This year’s beneficiaries were Sukhdham, an organization that serves abandoned parents on the outskirts of Delhi, the Barrington Area Council on Aging (BACOA), and other charities. The banquet hall was full with close to 400 people attending.

Event coordinator was SASC Founder Sushma Bhanot. SASC President Trupti Kuvadia gave the welcome speech. Master of ceremonies amidst the colorful international dances was “100% clean” Indo-Japanese stand-up comedian Dan Nainan, who used to open for Russell Peters on nationwide tours and has performed last year for New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Apple co-founder Steve Wozniack, and President Obama. Largely targeted at teenagers, often having communication problems with their parents and divergent expectations, he played a great deal on his own mixed parentage with a Malayalee (Keralite) father and Japanese mother.

Talented youth from across Chicagoland performed dances from China, India, Middle-East and Mexico and the audience partook of a family-style dinner prepared by India House Banquets. The cultural program lasted from 8:00 to 11:00 pm, preceded by a cocktail hour and continuing with open floor dancing. SASC showed slide of Sukhdam and of its work across Chicago area.

There were in all seven dances, starting with AR Rahman’s “Jai Ho” choreographed by Kuvadia. The small children performing were Yash Asija, Aadhya Reddy, Aarul Dhawan, Akshey Monga, Alisha Dharia, Rohan Sharan, and Anvitha Nadendla.

Maile Fidale, Theresa Fu, Angela He, Jessica He, Joyce Hu, and Grace Liu from the Sunny U Culture and Education Center presented “Paper-cutting Girls” choreographed by Hao Lu from an original dance in China. It is a common scene during Chinese New Year to see red paper spread out on the table with bits flying about as the busy scissors create the intricate patterns.

An Indian medley performed by middle school girls, choreographed by Anjali Patel and Shriya Patel, consisted of Megha Rao, Roma Nayak, Isha Nayak, Anjali Patel, and Shriya Patel.

Kira, Kara, Larisa, and Daria from Midnight Tribe, Chicagoland’s premier belly dance, world fusion, and fire performance troupe, presented two Middle-eastern style dances. “Entrance to the Stars” was performed with veil and fan veils and “Desert Rose” by Sting with Isis wings and swords as props.

Joel Thomas and Claire Obrzut from Fred Astaire Dance Studio performed a Latin dance combining Cha Cha and Mambo with much verve on the dance floor.

Barrington Middle School kids presented the lyrical “Ho hey” by the Lumineers. This version was choreographed by Serena Shah and the troupe comprised of Serena Shah, Rishva Reddy, Aliza Hasan, Shivani Majmudar, Ishani Majmudar, Maya Rao, Tanvi Shara, Sravya Dasari , Diya Mehta, Somya Panchal, and Kareena Dharia. Barrington High School Dance Group presented Bollywood-inspired “Chamak chalo” an Indo-Western fusion medley choreographed by Sanaa Walia and Akash Khurana. The troupe comprised Akash Khurana, Ravi Khurana, Jay Bhanot, Ishaan Jaglan, Rahul Narain, Jazib Farooqui, Sanaa Walia, Taara Mehta, Rashmi Singh, Priyanka Voruganti, Bhavya Dasari, and Anusha Panchal.

Announcing an upcoming health clinic and a soup kitchen, SASC issued the following statement: “We value the vision that no activity or amount is too small, by providing the community a platform to bring their resources together to make a difference. Each month we support seniors by organizing get-togethers and luncheons that are stimulating and help them foster connections. We also help to deliver Meals on Wheels to seniors in partnership with BACOA (Barrington Area Council for Old Age).”

SASC, a registered non-profit, charity organization with a 501C status, is focused on giving back to seniors and the underprivileged in Barrington and Chicagoland, then reaching out to India and elsewhere. Previous fundraisers have contributed to a senior home Sukhdham and international eye care foundation in India, welfare projects in Africa, and flood relief in Haiti. Sukhdham in New Delhi houses “orphaned” seniors who have been abandoned by their family. SASC works with BACOA to deliver nutritious meals to home-bound seniors and people with disabilities, allowing them to live independently in their own homes. SASC also organizes a stimulating monthly luncheon for senior groups to meet up socially, with a guest speaker, musician or a game of bingo. SASC can be contacted through Event Coordinator Sushma Bhanot (224) 828-5261 and Secretary Tina Khurana (847) 814-3175.

Raffle tickets were sold at five for $20 with bids for six 6 baskets labeled Spoil Me, Fitness, Spring, Entertainment, Wine, and Yoga, The proceeds were divided 50/50 between the raffle winner and SASC. The first winner Martha Stone actually returned her $500 portion as donation! BACAO representative Cal Doherty was immediately presented a check on stage for $1000.
DJ for the evening was teenager Ravi Khurana.

Photo captions for Share-a-Smile fundraiser on Mar. 16 at India House Banquet, Schaumburg:
1. Standup comedian Dan Nainan entertaining the audience with his jokes
2. First winner of the raffle Martha Stone receiving $1000 prize [Vipul should have photo]
3. SASC President Trupti Kuvadia welcome speech.
4. “Jai Ho” choreographed by Kuvadia
5. “Paper-cutting Girls” choreographed by Hao Lu
6. Midnight Tribe, Middle-eastern dance
7. Fred Astaire Dance Studio Latin Cha Cha and Mambo
8. Lumineers from Barrington Middle School performing “Ho hey”
9. “Chamak chalo” from Barrington High School Dance Group
10. Group photo of SASC committee members joined by performers