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Students hold benefit revue for LLSCNY

Twenty-one Fayetteville-Manlius and Jamesville-DeWitt students and graduates will present, "Keep a Dream in your Heart: A Broadway Revue" this Friday, Aug. 1

Proceeds will go directly to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society of Central New York.

This is the second year for such a benefit. The idea came from F-M's Andrea Doto, who starred in "Thoroughly Modern Millie" this summer. She, along with many others in CNY, studied under local dance teacher Susan Alvarez-Hughes, said Renee Tembeckjian, volunteer coordinator.

Better known as "Miss Susan," Alvarez-Hughes died of lymphoma in 2005, leaving behind not only her husband and son but also many devoted students.

Last year, Doto arranged a benefit dance recital, "Keep a Dream in Your Heart: A Dance Benefit in Honor of Susan Alvarez-Hughes." Dozens of dance studios from the areas sent participants, and the event raised $3,500 for the LLSCNY.

"This year she's doing it again, but changing the format," Tembeckjian said. Thus, the tradition of a performance in the honor of Alvarez-Hughes continues, but instead of dance, the F-M and J-D actors will perform a Broadway Revue.

The program includes music pieces from classic and current Broadway shows, and the local group "Sentimental Serenade," made up of eight women, will also be performing at the revue.

"They're really, really trying to do a great thing," Tembeckjian said, in trying to combat the disease that took their teacher's life.

Students have been rehearsing for weeks already, according to Tembeckjian, and while not all of the students involved are theater majors, almost all have had private lessons or studied outside of school, she said. "It's going to be very first rate."

The evening, which has a 7:30 p.m. curtain, is being held in the F-Mauditorium. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased at the door. Those who want to donate can become a patron and have their names listed in the program.

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