Girls plan AIDS benefit |

Girls plan AIDS benefit

by Joyce Hollister

Bringing the world to Carson Valley is the goal of three high school girls.

Students Sara Bunting, Katy Reil, both 17, and Allison McCormick, 18, say that by producing a show to raise funds for the Dancers Responding to AIDS, a New York-based foundation, they make the community more aware of issues outside our small Valley.

Putting on a dance show as a benefit was Sara’s idea.

“When I was 8, my uncle died of AIDS, so that originally sparked my interest in just helping in general,” Sara said. “But, also, I figured if we could bring the community together, especially the kids in the community, the teen-agers, for a cause, it would really let everyone around know we will fight for something and stand up for it – and we’re willing to help.

“That was mainly why I wanted to do it.”

The three girls have been dance students with Ann Peters Dance Workshop in Gardnerville since they were small.

Katy is coordinating a sale of artwork from elementary and high school students that will also be held at the show.

“When Sara told me about the idea, I just thought it was a great way for our studio to get involved,” she said. “‘Why not get other studios and school groups and the whole community involved?’ we thought. ‘It would be a good thing for the community.’

“I think all fine arts groups coming together is really good.”

Katy’s mother and father are both art teachers, and she is an artist herself. A silent auction of student work she has obtained, as well as some of her own pieces and some work from her parents, will be held.

“I thought it would be a good idea to raise money and to include the art part of it,” she said.

The silent auction has not been an easy activity to plan, however.

“It’s kind of difficult, because the kids have to realize their artwork is going to be donated, and they’re never getting it back. You have to talk to the kids – and the younger children, you have to talk to their parents so no one gets upset about their artwork being given away.”

Allison said of her interest in the project, “I think we live in such a small town, and it’s hard for us to realize the magnitude of how many people the AIDS virus has really affected. I think it’s important to involve our community.”

Dancers from Ann Peters Dance Workshop will perform seven dances with young dancers of various ages through teen years, plus one dance that was choreographed especially to deal with the AIDS issue.

All About Dance in Gardnerville will perform six dances, including dancers ranging from ages 10 to 40.

“We think that it’s a worthy cause,” said Diana Alldredge of All About Dance. “We’re happy to take part in it. We’re glad that the girls took time out to organize this – these kinds of things take a lot of work and a lot of effort, and I think these girls should be congratulated for that.”

Drama students at Douglas High School have prepared a scene from Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” The four students, Ryan Ghan, Monique Baumann, Mary Zimmerman and Aaron Coogan, selected the scene and directed it themselves.

A band made up of teen musicians Anthony Janssen, leader, Jake Furlong and Russ Law will perform. Anthony will accompany vocalist Mary Zimmerman.

Allison, who has been working on the show with Katy and Sara since last summer, says it’s important to her and to her friends that the community becomes involved.

“This is a way I could involve our community, doing something I already love to do – dance,” she said.

Two performances are planned Saturday and Sunday, 7 p.m., at Pau-Wa-Lu Middle School. Admission is $10. For ticket information, call 267-2411 or 265-3466.