Friday, January 24

Live blog: Dance Marathon 2013

Charlie Wang

UCLA students spent 26 hours on their feet for Dance Marathon from Feb. 16-17. The annual event, in its 12th year, raises money to combat pediatric AIDS. Follow our coverage of the event as it unfolded here.

After the 26th hour came to a close, nine Pediatric AIDS Coalition members lined up on stage holding tiles that formed a number: $475,422.57.

The record-breaking fundraising total, which was $24,278 more than the amount of funds raised last year, will support efforts to combat pediatric AIDS.

Dancers sat down at 1 p.m. for the first time in more than a day with a collective sigh of relief. About 900 dancers completed the full 26 hours; hundreds more participated in three-hour shifts as moralers throughout the day and night.

Andrew Ho, president of the coalition, said to the dancers that though they raised a record-breaking total this year, he felt the knowledge they gained by participating in the event was more important.

“That knowledge gives you a power money can’t buy,” he said.


Here’s a video of Jake Glaser, son of the namesake of the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Founation, speaking at the end of the event.


Participants in UCLA Dance Marathon 2013 just got to sit down, after 26 hours of standing. Fundraising total coming soon.

  Power Hour has officially started. One more hour left of UCLA Dance Marathon 2013.



  Michael Basic, one of about nine DJs that performed throughout the event, pumped up the crowd before the last hour of Dance Marathon. Read more about him here.

Dj Basic


The UCLA Marching Band performed with less than two hours left of Dance Marathon. Here’s a photo of them from Daily Bruin photo editor Blaine Ohigashi.



Dancer profile: The 9 a.m.-12 p.m. shift of Dance Marathon is “Lumos,” with dancers wearing costumes matching the magical theme. Katharine Langel, a third-year biology student, opted to dress up as one of the dragons from J.K. Rowling’s “Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.” Yep, her wings are made from a pink umbrella.

“I was thrift store shopping and saw this sparkly shirt and was like, ‘how can I not get that?'”

pink dragon


Allyson Moeller, a third-year international development studies student, took a break to plan out her spring quarter schedule. Her pass starts exactly when Dance Marathon ends – 1 p.m.



Here’s the video of the fourth boys vs. girls dance battle. Who did you like this time?

Hour 20: Who danced better? Submit View results without voting »

Less than four hours left of Dance Marathon. Sun’s out. Lights are on. And dancers seem to have regained their energy.


6 a.m. – With seven hours left of Dance Marathon, there was a mixture of deliriousness and energy from the dancers and committee members.


Dancer profileFirst-year human biology and society student Amy Gonser went to a thrift shop and picked up items from home to prepare for the themes at Dance Marathon. Read about some of the items in her storage bin here.



The two groups of dancers competed again in the boys vs. girls dance battle. Here’s the third video of the 26-hour event.

Hour 15: Who danced better? Submit View results without voting »


Dancer profile: Alexandra Delatorre, a fourth-year anthropology student, alternated between studying for her upcoming anthropology test and dancing every 30 minutes.


Exhaustion seemed to be hitting some of the dancers, as Dance Marathon entered its sixteenth hour.


Dancer profile: We checked in again with Chase Skillin, a dancer who is participating on crutches, just after the halfway point. He had originally planned to split his time between his crutches and a wheelchair, but decided to try to stay on his crutches the whole time. After 13 hours, he was still going strong and hasn’t used a wheelchair yet.

“There have been periods of half an hour, where I think I’m gonna die, but then I come out of it.”



With 11.5 hours left, energy was still high in Ackerman Grand Ballroom.


12 a.m. – Dance Marathon reached its halfway point – 13 more hours. The “Let There Be Bright” shift theme started as dancers dressed up in neon costumes and waved brightly-colored glow sticks.

The 12-3 a.m. moralers, people who come to the event for three hours at a time to pump up the dancers, ran in just after midnight.



We checked in with Daily Bruin News columnist Sonali Kohli near the halfway point. Kohli talked about the crafts dancers can make when they aren’t dancing.


A first aid volunteer told one of our reporters that the most common dancer injuries have been foot cramps and backaches.



The groups of boys and girls are back for their second dance battle. Who won this time?

Hour 10: Who danced better? Submit View results without voting »


Bruin Harmony, UCLA’s all-male a cappella group, performed during the twelfth hour. Watch them perform “I Knew You Were Trouble” by Taylor Swift.


Posters line the walls of the third floor women’s restroom in Ackerman Union to motivate dancers.



The beginning of the eleventh hour marked the start of the “Twilight Zone” shift, when participants dressed up in Halloween costumes. A dancer dons a vampire costume.



Dancer profile: Dustin Randolph, a first-year undeclared student.

“I think it’s great because we’re raising money … having fun while doing it. I love dancing. It’s something you should do at least once in your lifetime.”


Akshay Bakshi, a first-year computer science student.

“26 hours seems too short right now. Bruins can do 26 days if that’s what it takes to make a difference.”



Well into the ninth hour of staying on their feet, participants and committee members did the Harlem Shake.


Jarell Perry, R&B artist and UCLA alumnus, performed during the ninth hour of Dance Marathon.


Just a floor above the commotion of Dance Marathon, is the quiet “Cause Room,” which aims to educate participants about pediatric AIDS with quilts and a dress made of condoms. Read about it here.




Dancers took a break to eat dinner, one of five meals they receive during the event. Read more here.



Daily Bruin Video will follow a group of boys and a group of girls during Dance Marathon. Every five hours, the two groups will have a morale dance battle. Here’s the first video during the fifth hour.

Hour 5: Who danced better? Submit View results without voting »


Jamar Rogers, a semifinalist from season two of “The Voice,” spoke and performed during the fifth hour. Rogers said he was diagnosed as HIV positive six years ago.

“My story isn’t a story of positive or negative, it’s a human story about second chances.”


Dancer profile: Kelly Kainge, a fourth-year civil engineering student, dressed up as Elvis for the 3-6 p.m. celebrity-themed shift. She is the dancer captain for the pink team and this is her third year participating.

photo (4)


Two floors down from where participants were dancing, UCLA alumna Lauren Grace was stationed outside the UCLA Textbook store selling this year’s Dance Marathon merchandise. Read more about Grace.

alumna post


Dancer profile: Ian Wong, a second-year psychobiology student, said Dance Marathon’s cause, raising money to combat pediatric AIDS, is close to his heart because he wants to be a pediatrician.

“It breaks my heart to think about those kids who don’t get to experience life the way they should.”

dm dancer


We asked members of the Pediatric AIDS Coalition, which organizes Dance Marathon, to demonstrate the morale dance. Participants perform the dance every hour.

To choose the morale dance song, the Morale Committee searches for “fun and upbeat” songs and decides based on a process of elimination, said Kelsey Hutchinson and Veronika Wuest, both members of the committee. Once the committee agrees on a song, they come up with “funny dance moves” to go with the rhythm. This year’s song? “Good Vibrations” by Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch.


Just after 1 p.m., Francia Raisa, most known for her role in the television show “The Secret Life of the American Teenager,” spoke to the dancers.


Dancer profile: Chase Skillin, a second-year psychobiology student, injured his leg playing basketball three weeks ago, after already raising the minimum amount of money for Dance Marathon. His initial plan was to alternate between using his crutches and a wheel chair, but he decided he was going to try to stick to his crutches for the full 26 hours.

“I’m going to go for it.”



Our video reporters grabbed a few images of the start of Dance Marathon, including Pediatric Aids Coalition committee members teaching the “morale dance.”


Dancer profile: Kevin Patterson, first-year English student, member of Theta Chi fraternity. Raised $305.


It’s third-year economics student Jovanna Fierro’s second year participating.

“The worst part is when the sun comes up and they pull back the curtains and you realize you’ve been here all night.”



11 a.m. — The dancing officially got going with “Let’s Get It Started” by the Black Eyed Peas.





With about half an hour before the start of Dance Marathon, dancers filed toward Ackerman Grand Ballroom with bags of clothing and supplies.


Blog editor Kate Parkinson-Morgan snapped a shot of dancers and Pediatric AIDS Coalition committee members helping direct traffic this morning.

Excitement built up on social media feeds into the morning.

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