LAURINBURG —Dancing with the Scotland Stars attracted hundreds to downtown Laurinburg to watch the eight local couples try dance their way to victory.
The couple that went home in first place were Tyris Jones and Gyivan Jackson who performed an African dance to Vuli Ndlela by Brenda Fassie. The two were inspired by Jackson’s family and had a lot of fun participating.
“It’s really overwhelming,” said Jackson, the owner of 215 on Main restaurant. “It doesn’t really matter who won… you just had fun. We thought it would eccentric to be outside of the box and the song is one my family really likes so we decided to incorporated the African dance.”
Jackson said that she is not really a performer and dancing in Saturday’s show was something that helped her step out of her comfort zone.
For Jones, a storyteller, being on stage is not unusual. He said he was still humbled by winning.
“We went in with the mindset of having fun, not winning, and that’s what we did,” Jones said.
Both Jackson and Jones agree that preparing for the event was tougher than they expected.
“It’s a lot harder than it looks to coordinate and the timing takes a lot of practice then you have to do it in front of people as well as being judged it’s hard,” Jackson said.
“Plus you have an expectation in your head of each other of how you want it go,” Jones added.
Besides first place, there was also a runner-up, Community Choice Award, and People’s Choice Award as well as other awards such as best chemistry and originality.
The runners-up were Autumn Lauzon and Black Caldwell who danced the Paso Doble. The idea behind the dance was that he was the matador and she was his cape.
For the Community Choice Award, the winners were Jonathon Lewis and Carmen Sagastume who raised the most money and wowed the crowd with their spicy salsa to Despacitio.
Raymond Hyatt and Robin Gamberg were the audience’s favorite winning the People’s Choice award to their salsa dance to a Despacitio/Fireball mashup.
The other awards included Alan and Martha Roblee winning fanciest footwork, Ralph and Angie Kersey winning the originality award, James and LaTonya McLean winning best chemistry, and Kasey Pittman and Charles Bounds taking the Beach Award.
Arts Council Director Erin Rembert said while there were some stressful times with moving the event downtown she was thrilled with the success.
“It went wonderfully and everyone seemed really excited to have it downtown,” Rembert said. “I think it was the absolute best thing for everyone who participated and came out.”
Proceeds from the event will go to help Scotland County Arts Council and its programming. Officials have not announced how much money was raised on Saturday.
The Arts Council will also be having several other performances coming up including first place winner Tyris Jones performing “Folk Tales, Tall Tales, Just His Tales” on June 2 at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. There will also be a summer art camp from June 18-21.
For information about the Arts Council and its programs visit www.storyartscenter.org or follow on Facebook and Instagram @artscouncilscotlandco.
Reach Katelin Gandee at 910-506-3171