October 29, 2010

Ice Castles 2010

Boy, I thought my blog was obscure, but I've just been to the awesome Opthamology in Film blog - celebrating eye-related content in popular films - and discovered that Ice Castles 2010 never got a theaterical release.

Did we all miss it?

I was so excited to blog about the theaterical debut of 2010 so I could rehash about the original in 1978. (I have lots to say about the original - which will come soon.) But why didn't it make it to the theaters? Anyone know?

Is it just more decline figure skating's popularity in general?

October 19, 2010

Halloween Costumes

Yes, Ice Mom, I'm going back to the well on this one. Buckle up kids and help me pick the silliest Holiday On Ice costume that may be the "best" Halloween costume at your local bar, neighborhood bash, or after-show cast party. Now, there are lots of beautiful costumes also for sale on the Holiday On Ice site, but that wouldn't be as fun to show you, now would it.

Up first: Some kind of "Eye" in the Bugs Bunny show.

Not to be outdone by the female version is the male eye from the same show:

This one features both male and female costumes and I can't figure out which one is creepier:

Could work out with the slate of zombie movies and tv shows coming out.

Okay, next is this guy is trying to look Mexican, but I don't know:

That poncho looks more like a navajo toga. And don't get me started on the mustache.

Which also makes me wonder how authentic this guys is:

Next up what I call the office peacock look:

This one is suppose to be a costume from the Caribbean:

And finally, this one's for Ice Mom:

So you tell me - which one is the best? Remember Halloween is just around the corner. If you want to know what NOT to wear, check out this article by Gawker.com

Disney On Ice gets another mention in the Washington Post

under this headline: Abramoff associate Ring stands trial a second time

... cue the jokes about Disney On Ice!

That's right, this guy, Kevin Ring, is alleged to have procured illegaly, for his clients, among other things, tickets to Disney On Ice. Read the Washington Post article about it here.

Ice shows getting a shout out.

I wrote about it (and more importantly linked to the Washington Post's first article to drive a lot of traffic to my site, hee, hee, hee) the first time back in June of 2008.

So I promise to keep track of any mention of Mickey's ice skating leading to jail time, or some other far-fetched joke. But I think the lesson we can all take from this is that he did it for the kids!

October 18, 2010

Ice Capades Mini-Reunion This Weekend

Another reminder, if you happen to be free this weekend, and happen to live in the greater San Francisco/Santa Rosa areas, and happened to have skated in Ice Capades.

Hey - if you skated for Follies or Disney or park shows only, I bet they would let join them.

When: Oct. 23rd, 2010 starting at 1:00 P.M.
Where: Santa Rosa, California (Linda Illsley's home)

We plan to start at 1:00P.M. That will allow us to visit, look at photos, etc. We'll have dinner in the early evening.
Lisa has arranged for WINE TASTING in the afternoon hosted by Dehlinger Winery, YEA! There will be lots of munchies in the afternoon (but lunch will NOT be served).

Linda has a fabulous outdoor park like setting and she is known for her entertaining skills!

We thought it would be a lot more fun to have the party at Linda's home instead of in a restaurant, etc. We can be together much longer and don't have to worry about disturbing others. We will ask everyone to contribute to the "party kitty" (probably about $25-$30 each) to help cover the cost of food, beverages, etc. If you are local and want to bring a dish; that would be great (please give Linda a call). I plan to bring a cake! Yea, no weigh-ins!

For those of you who don't know the area, Santa Rosa is just 50 miles north of San Francisco and is very near the famous Wine Country of Napa and Sonoma.
Our weather in Oct. us usually some of the nicest of the year. Please note it will still be HIGH season for hotel rates.

Please let us know if you can bring any DVDs or CDs with movies/photos of our performing days. Linda will have a theater set up to show/play them. Even "low tech" scrapbooks are a lot of fun to share.
I recently "found" 18 super 8 movie reels of Ice Capades and I am having them transferred to DVD, so they should be ready to bring and share!
There is the possibility to also go to the Shultz Museum and maybe work in some wine tasting at a few local wineries on Sunday.

October 13, 2010

It Gets Better

I'm a day late for National Coming Out Day and, a dollar short, as the saying goes. And like Aaron at Axels, Loops, and Spins, I don't like to go beyond the crucial issues such as the basic showgirl diet, where to buy the most outrageous Halloween costume ever, or when the next Ice Capades reunion will be.

But I confess I didn't know how bad it was for teens and young adults that we need to tell them "It Gets Better." The news lately is heart-wrenching. I thought with TV shows like "Will & Grace", "Modern Family" or "Glee" we were showing gays as mainstream. You know, like it really is in the world.

Coming from a world of ice shows, I lived in a world where gay men were the majority. They outnumbered straight men, often by a large majority if it was a large ice show. If I may speak for these gay men, they would probably tell you it was nice to be in the norm, because often where they had come from wasn't. And it wasn't good. Family, neighbors, school kids could be very disapproving.

I wish I could be more articulate and offer a powerful essay on the incredible stories of the skaters I worked with, but I'm better at fiction. What I can offer though is it does get better.

October 6, 2010

Donald Jackson

Olympic Medalist Donald Jackson named 2010 Skate Canada International Athlete Ambassador

Go here for the original post on Skatebuzz.

He was the coach for Holiday On Ice the year I joined in 1983. Back then the big ice shows did things like employ coaches full time to give the performers lessons, make sure that in every number the skaters had on either hats or wigs, and keep jugglers gainfully employed. Nowadays, none of that.

Truth is, most of the choreographers for shows today were excellent skaters in their own time, so a coach is not needed. The choreographer we had in HOI had been a dancer.

I'll never forget the look on Don's face, when the choreographer was putting together finale bows and she said, "Okay, you guys on this side, do your axels over here to the right, and you guys on that side, go over there and do your axels to the left."

As one of the understudies, I got to have a couple of private lessons with Don when he was touring with our show. He left after a month or so to go to the next division and help out there. What, you think each division got their own coach?

I still remember working with him, because I was sooooo nervous. What an amazing opportunity. A world champion helping me on double toes and loops. He had an amazing jump philosophy that I never forgot. I can't do it justice in writing, but if you email me, let's talk ....

Anyway, I'm sure I stood a bit straighter and had a little more spring in my jumps anyway (they don't call it nervous energy for nothing) but after one of those lessons, I improved by two years if it had been up to me alone.

Besides all of his skating accolades, he was a great coach as well! Thanks Don!