Volunteer Spotlight: Meet Chauncey Dandridge!

Dance Parade, Inc. is a volunteer supported non-profit organization and it is the dedication, expertise and passion of these individuals that make our events so successful!
In each issue of STEPS!, we choose a different volunteer to spotlight. We ask them a few questions about the magic they help create within the Dance Parade experience.  Check out how you can volunteer for the 2016 Parade by clicking here!18926_10152865673627153_241946083299975214_n

Hey Chauncey, Thanks for taking the time to speak with us about your background and volunteering for Dance Parade!
How did you first find out about Dance Parade?
I found out about Dance Parade from one of my best friends Mel, who introduced me to the project during its very first year.  I became a member of the very first NYDP (New York Dance Police) squad and later jumped on board as Stage Manager of Dance Fest back when it was held at Washington Square Park.  I had no idea what I was getting into and was instantly hooked!  My involvement has grown each year since.

What is your current role in Dance Parade, Inc?
Currently, I am the Social Media Chair for Dance Parade as well as Commissioner of The NYDP.  I am also on the Steering Committee and help support the PR, Promotions and Marketing Committees as well as Production during our special events throughout the year as well as on the big day.   I’m a big cheerleader for the organization and help out wherever and whenever I can.

What is your favorite style of dance to watch? to participate in? What is my favorite style of dance?
I love to watch all kinds of dance from ballet to tango to freestyle and more.  Beautiful movement in general intrigues and captivates me.   When it comes to dancing myself, I am a house music junkie and have dabbled in Bhangra…one of the most joyous dances I have ever danced!1010573_10151533577977153_1822734260_n

What is your dance background or interest in dance?   
I don’t have any formal training but have been a club kid since the 90s…so house music is part of my genetic makeup.  Being a DJ for over 12 years in NYC,  I have spent a lot of time making people dance.   My interest in dance comes from it’s ability to change people’s perception of life, increase passion and heart rate and for it’s social, primitive and unifying capabilities.

If you could share the stage with anyone in history famous or not, living or deceased, a trained dancer or not, performing a routine choreographed by yourself…who would it be?
I would be quivering in my boots but would love to be on stage with Madonna.

What dance group or dance style are you most looking forward to seeing this coming year in the parade?
I don’t necessarily have one group in mind that I am looking forward to seeing.  It is the combination of over 75 different dance styles and how they interact with one another that I look forward to.  It’s really amazing to see different groups socializing and interacting with one another…all with a common goal and excitement.  I think Dance Parade puts a lot of people and artists in contact with one another in a way that they don’t expect and wouldn’t have access to otherwise.  This is what makes Dance Parade so magical from my point of view. 11258043_10152948236477153_5649067156400137985_n

If you could pick a Grand Marshall for this year’s parade who would it be?
Sorry to be a cliche but I would love Madonna to be perched atop a float in the parade one year while her dancers blow New York City away.    I would probably want to abandon all my other Dance Parade duties and hang out with her the whole day though.  Haha.

What pitch would you use to attract a new volunteer onto the Dance Parade team?
Inspiring and introducing people to the power of dance is a revolutionary thing…join the Dance Parade team and be a part of that revolution.

If you could pick another country to hold a Dance Parade and Festival….which would it be?
Africa.  I feel like we would be taking it back to where dance was invented.

What does this year’s theme mean to you?
Literally, the theme is obvious.  This will be our 10th year producing New York City’s most magical parade and festival.  ‘Decade of Dance’ is a reminder that a surprisingly small group of people who give it their all each year to make the almost impossible happen will have been pulling their resources and their love of dance and community together for the tenth time!  It’s pretty remarkable and unprecedented.  I am honored to be a considerable part of it all.  It makes for quite a legacy to leave behind.   I hope one day the theme will be ‘A Century of Dance’!