Dance for Good

Graceful Expressions Dance Company will perform “Mary Poppins” during three shows on Saturday, March 7, at the Cary Arts Center. All proceeds will benefit the Kenya-based nonprofit Project Elimu.

“Each year, our spring performance is a benefit performance,” said April Schweitzer, director of Graceful Expressions Dance Education. “Service is an important part of our culture with the company. We want the young dancers to see how they can use their talents to serve the community and to make an impact on the world.”

Project Elimu was founded by dancer Mike Wamaya to help children in Kibera, the largest slum in Africa, located a few miles from downtown Nairobi, Kenya.

Project Elimu aims to developing communication, collaboration, problem-solving, critical thinking and creativity in students through the arts. In Kibera, where more than half of a million people live, most earn less than a dollar a day. But through art, including dance and other outlets, children are able to focus on fun and learning instead of the struggles they face at home.

The 2018 benefit performance helped fund Project Elimu’s afterschool enrichment center in Kenya, which provides additional space for children to express themselves through the arts.

Performances of the family-friendly show will be at 11 a.m., 2 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. Thanks to a grant from the Town of Cary, the 11 a.m. performance will be sensory-friendly and free for children with special needs.

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