The Dumke Student theatre is dimly lit with an orange hue as audience members wait in anticipation for Dancing with the Stars on Saturday.
Hosted by Westminster Theatre Society and Westminster Dance Society, the event showcased three contestants: Maggie Regier, Han Kim and Chris Davison. The contestants were paired with a dance partner and competed to raise funds for their charity of choice.
The three teams consisted of Maggie Regier with dance partner Kaelan Patrick dancing for Equality Utah, Han Kim with dance partner Katelynn Killian dancing for Planned Parenthood and Chris Davison with dance partner Carli Gumm dancing for Best Friends Animal Society.
Carli Gumm, dance partner to Chris Davison, said it was fun to get to meet professors outside of the usual classroom setting.
“Getting to teach Chris, who is usually on the teaching side of things, that was really interesting to see him in a student role,” Gumm said. “We have some really cool teachers, so that was good to meet them.”
The event had a panel of three judges present to give feedback on each dance after they performed. Kate Abbott was the judge representing Westminster Dance Society. Abbott who has previously participated in the event as a dancer said it was an incredible experience.
“This was my first time judging,” Abbott said. “I had a really good time. It was fun watching them go out there, perform their best and see all of the creativity.”
The event came to a close with the announcement of the winning team, Han Kim and Katelynn Killian.
Kim, associate professor in the public health program, and Killian danced a disco number to raise money for Planned Parenthood an organization he said he admired.
“Planned Parenthood has been a forefront of reproductive freedom and women’s health the last several decades,” Kim said. “I feel very strongly about those causes […] Given the prevailing attitudes and politics, I think it’s important now more than ever to support Planned Parenthood.”
Killian said that her experience dancing with Kim was a fantastic one.
“Han Kim is an absolute pleasure to work with,” Killian said. “His students are so lucky to have him and I hope he does it again next year or at least comes back as a judge.”