Sunday, April 24, 2011

With friends, Eldridge Shannon to hip hop his way to graduation May 7

Hip hop dancer Eldridge Shannon, winner of this year's E-Town Idol, has recruited his fellow dancers and friends for Dance Class of 2011 Benefit Show. Scheduled for May 7 at BooCoo, this rare show aims to showcase some of the best young hip hop dancers in the area and raise the funds Eldridge needs so he can graduate in June from ETHS with his class.

Eldridge and I recently discussed his ambitions and the show:

Q: You need money in order to graduate from school. Why? Is someone holding some test scores hostage or something?

Eldridge: No, no, nothing like that. Everyone's been great to me. I took a trip with my theatre class to Canada. It was great, something I'll remember for the rest of my life. We all did some fundraising, but unfortunately I didn't make enough money selling those candy bars, so I had to borrow some from the school. It's time to pay them back.

Q: How much do you owe?

Eldridge: Approximately $480. I'm hoping to have at least 80 people at the show, hopefully more.

Q: What if the show is so well-attended that you make more than you owe ETHS?

Eldridge: I'd like to use some of the funds toward another dance show to raise funds for dance education. The dance community has been so great to me. I want to find a way give a little back.

Q: What are your plans after graduating ETHS?

Eldridge: More dancing and theatre. Also, I'll be going to the Illinois Institute of Art in the fall to study media and animation.

Q: You've got some great friend who are stepping up to perform. Who's performing and what kind of a show can we expect?

Eldridge: JigguRs Dance Company, Nonstop Dance Company, Variations Dance Crew, Samantha Lento, Nicholas Brownlee will be there, and hopefully Kirby Reed and his dancers will come by. The show will be stellar, nothing short of amazing. I'm taking all these great dancers and putting them all under one small roof (lol). I'm trying to make this the biggest local hip hop dance performance Evanston has ever seen.

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Dance Class of 2011 Benefit Show: One-night only performance at BooCoo on May 7 starting at 7 p.m. Tickets are on sale online and at the door.

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Full disclosure: Eldridge is my pseudo-nephew, for lack of a more descriptive term. I've known him and his mom since he was 9 years old, back when we all lived on Brummel in Evanston.


  1. So excited that Nonstop Dance Company and rapper Young Ray will b e there!! Thanks for the post Karen!!!!


  2. UPDATE: Eldridge was able to make enough money to pay his debt to the school. He walked the stage at ETHS' graduation ceremony on June 5.