We at Spey are renowned for our exceptional collections of jewelry, particularly our most lustrous pearls (and the newest limited-release amber collection). With smooth, glistening, mirror-like surfaces of the richest nacre, Spey pearls are a step above the rest. But this weekend, Spey pearls reflected something a little extra special: mirror ball luster.
Dancing with the pearls
Most will be familiar with the hit television show Dancing with the Stars – celebrities pair with professional dancers to compete for the coveted mirror ball trophy – and for one night each year, this entertainment is brought to our nation’s capital. DC’s Dancing Stars Gala brings together local celebrities and Washingtonians for an evening of dance in support of a good cause. This year, our very own Paul Ashe was selected to compete. Over the course of 12 weeks, he studied the dramatic Paso Doble with professional ballroom dancer Karina Vidal. This weekend, he performed this intense dance of the bull fighter (while wearing 72 inches of pearls) in front of a crowd of hundreds.
A reason to dance
Through some incredible sponsorships and the leveraged networks of the competing celebrities, the gala raises crucial funds for several area nonprofits and charities, like Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, The Jennifer Bush-Lawson Foundation, and Operation Renewed Hope Foundation. To up the ante, the winner of the competition may give $10,000 to an additional charity of their own choosing. That’s certainly a reason to dance!
Mr. Ashe selected the Puerto Rico International Piano Festival to support. The incredible artistry and talent of the students proves the organization’s worth, but the spirit and heart it engenders is beyond measure. And while Puerto Rico remains in great need of even the most basic essentials following the devastation of recent hurricanes, the Festival helps to uplift and nourish the soul of the island. Art brings people together, helps people cope with the toughest of times, and inspires people to celebrate the beauty that can be found around us. The Festival does just that.
The judges’ choice
Emmy-nominated dancer and choreographer Chelsie Hightower, The Washington Ballet’s Julie Kent, and former White House press secretary Sean Spicer judged the nine contestants’ dances and, after anxiously bated breath, delivered their verdict. With three 10s, the only perfect score of the evening, Mr. Ashe clenched the title of Judges’ Choice! The mirror ball trophy he was presented raises awareness for the Puerto Rico International Piano Festival, and is a standing and shining reminder of the good that comes from art and a little dance.
Image: Miss USA 2016 Deshauna Barber, Kari Merkel, Michelle Stephenson, Washington Redskins’ Charles Mann, Paul Ashe, Karina Vidal, Irene Bueno, and Kevin McCarthy. Credit: Washington Life.