Dancers

The S.B. Silver Follies Story

The Santa Barbara Silver Follies began as the “Razzle Dazzle Dancers” in 2003 with a group of six dancers. The Silver Follies Dancers are fifty years of age and older who are working to revive and improve their talents and stamina in order to perform. They have built a reputation for producing fine precision dance numbers and Broadway-style shows.

Meet our dancers:

 

Cathie Hetyonk

     Director/Choreographer

Born 1952

Cathie knew at the tender age of five, that she would one day be a dancer. At sixteen she played a lead part in her first professional show. At 17 she choreographed a dancing act that toured Northern Italy and on her return danced in many shows in the Theatre District of London’s West End. She has performed on television in Germany, and later spent a considerable amount of time with the Monte Carlo Dance Company where she performed in front of Princess Grace and Prince Rainier. Before coming to the United States she danced her way across the Atlantic Ocean, many times on Cunard Lines QE2 performing fourteen different shows.  During her earlier years here, she was seen in both production shows at the MGM Grand Reno and Las Vegas. After the birth of her first child she diversified into modeling, choreographing for shows and also Trade Shows in the Hotels of Las Vegas. After devoting her time primarily to raising her three children with her husband Dave, she is happy to be back choreographing and directing The Santa Barbara Follies.

 

 

Denise Caracas

 

A native of Santa Barbara, Denise Caracas participated in the theatre program at San Marcos High School, while taking modern dance classes.  She was later a performer with Alex Fourniers Broadway Dance Company before leaving town to pursue her other passion – designing, at The Fashion Institute of Design. Upon graduating, she became a designer to a company in Brazil, married, raised a family and still continued to perform in numerous shows for the next thirty years of her life. She is happy to now be with The Silver Follies and continue her love of dance.

 


  Merrily Dixon

     Born 1944

 

Although Merrily`s introduction to dancing was at the tender age of six, her love of the art was curtailed when the family relocated a year later. She did, however, take part in square dancing and drill team in high school, while continuing with Israeli folk dancing in college. Although her degree was in history, Merrily began a career as a social worker. Her compassion with others is remarkable and today she can be found transporting and assisting special needs children. She is one of the longest standing members of The Follies, is an avid jazzercise attendee, and sings weekly with Santa Barbara’s Treble Clef chorus. Her honey, Alberto, and son Mathew applaud her.

 

    

Cynthia Gray

Born 1937

 

Cynthia began dancing at an early age and performed for several years professionally before leaving the stage to study law, marry and raise a family.  First retired from a law career and later from non-profit administration, she now enjoys being a Follies dancer for the exercise, the friendships and the enthusiasm for staying young.

 

    Nancy King, aka Queenie

Born 1946

Nancy King (nee: Hickman), a Santa Barbara native who attended local schools, has been entertaining area audiences since the age of four when she began her studies with the late Doris Smith of the Gunsett Academy of Dance. After a 35 year career in banking and finance, she is happy to live here in paradise with her husband David. They have been married since April fool’s Day 1984 and have two children and two grandchildren. She says:  “I am so fortunate to belong to this talented and committed group of women.  Dancing and performing with them has returned me to a path (and a joy) that I thought I left behind in childhood.”

 

 

 

Suzanne Lee

     Born 1950

 

Suzanne has been dancing in many forms since the age of three. During her college days at USC she performed as song girl. Although her career as a paralegal kept her busy, she still attended jazzercise, aerobics and dance classes. Since Suzanne joined The Follies in 2006, she has encountered many physical challenges, including breast cancer, chemo, radiation etc. She has been an inspiration to her fellow members in her failure to quit! She has danced her way through life’s greatest challenges and taught us to rethink our own `ailments’. Her college age son must truly be proud when he sees her on stage.

 

 

 

Joyce Spezman-Margolin

Born 1945

 

Joyce is thrilled to have the Santa Barbara Silver Follies and its talented dancers and singers in her life.  Having a Ph.D in education, Joyce has been an educator in both the public and private sectors most of her life and mainly focused on intellectual presentations.  Dancing and performing are a whole new world for her and definitely fit her goals of living a healthy and joyful third age.  The only previous dance experience Joyce has had was tap and modern ballet as a child.  Dancing with the Follies has given her a healthy way to keep exercising her brain and body, to continue to learn new skills, improve herself and provide enjoyment for others.  She thanks her husband, Don, and son, Max, for their continued support and love.

 

 

Connie Marquez

Born 1937

Connie has been “dabbling” in dance and music for most of her life.  A UCSB grad, she taught in local schools, specializing in dance and drill team. (Queenie was one of her junior high students!)  While raising her 5 children, Connie directed the SB Debonairre Baton and Drum Corps. Presently, in addition to performing with Silver Follies, she is asst. director and choreographer for the SB Treble Clef Women’s Chorus and a member of Girls’ Nite Out, a singing quartet.  Connie credits her “Mom” for making music, performing and people such an important part of her life.  Thanks, Mom!  Connie’s busy life is spent with her wonderful husband Sam, two dogs Cody and Ebony, cats Nat and Possum, and Barney the bird.  Connie and Sam have 8 perfect grandchildren and 1 great-granddaughter.  Life is good!

 

 

Patti Reid

Born 1940

Patti began dancing at the age of four and continued studying, performing and teaching through her teens.  At the age of eighteen she opened her own dance studio in Denver and operated Patricia’s School of Dance until moving to Santa Barbara in 1971.  Since arriving in California, she has become an active community volunteer and has found that being married to a physician, raising four children, enjoying her grandchildren and choreographing for local events to be gratifying and rewarding.  She joined the S.B. Silver Follies in 2006 and has been revitalized and inspired with dance being a major activity in her life once again.

 

 

  Jane Runyen

Born 1942

 

Jane began dancing as a child with tap and ballet.  As a teenager modern dance was her passion and she danced in a production of Brigadoon.  She was a member of the Barbarettes, a local performing group whose instructor was a former Rockette.  Raising four children and working full time put dancing on the back burner for many years.  After seeing Razzle Dazzle perform at a fundraiser in 2005 she joined the group.  Jane has almost eight grandchildren and is a Realtor with Sotheby’s International Realty.

 

 

 

Nancy Weichbrod

Born 1947

 

At the age of 8, Nancy started her ballet training and continued until she was 16 with the Washington School of Ballet. Dancing and singing in school musicals were a favorite extracurricular activity. Taking modern dance at the University of Maryland was an eye opener to the rest of the world of dance. Nancy began a flying career as a flight attendant in 1967 with United Airlines and retired in 2003 after 36 years. She is married to Richard and they have two grown sons. Jazzercise became part of her almost daily regime especially during the child rearing days. It was a way to exercise and get back to the dance moves that were so loved. Becoming a member of the Silver Follies has been a wonderful way to relive all those childhood aspirations.

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