Calling all Kurt Browning fans (me included)! Ice Theatre of New York (ITNY) is preparing a fantastic fall season with events in NYC and around the country. Right now the company is rehearsing in Sun Valley, Idaho with ballet great Edward Villella (married to 1968 Canadian National Figure Skating Champion Linda Villella) and at ITNY's annual fall gala, Kurt Browning and his ballerina wife Sonia Rodriguez, will be honored. This year's show is called ICE: DANCE and to add to the excitement, US Champion Ryan Bradley is back to perform in the show. Press release below.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE -- TICKETS ON SALE NOW FOR THE ICE THEATRE OF NEW YORK’S FALL 2013 SEASON ICE: DANCE FEATURING THE WORLD PREMIERE OF BALLET ICON EDWARD VILLELLA’S ICE BALLET: REVERIES
The Ice Theatre of New York, hailed by The New York Times as one of the top ten theatre picks in New York City, announces the sale of tickets for ICE: DANCE – it’s Fall 2013 Season of ice performances taking place Thursday, October 24 through Saturday, October 26, 2013 at the Sky Rink, Pier 61, Chelsea Piers – 23rd Street and Hudson River (west side of Manhattan).
This season – which includes a Gala Fund Raiser on Friday, October 25 -- features the world premiere of choreographer and ballet icon Edward Villella’s Reveries.
Villella, still hailed as the best American-born male ballet dancer of all time, was commissioned by Ice Theatre of New York to choreograph an ice ballet. Thus, Villella created Reveries, a work featuring five couples performing to the work of Tchaikovsky’s Orchestral Suite 3 in G Major, Op. 55:1 Elegie: Andantino molto Cantabile. Reveries is an 11-minute work Villella describes as a “lush romantic ballet about unattainable love.”
Reveries will feature skating World Team Members Kim Navarro and Brent Bommentre in the principal roles along with 7-time British Champion and European Bronze Medalist John Kerr. Costumes are by acclaimed designer Karen Young. “As a person coming from a classical ballet tradition, it is with absolute fascination to look at the Ice Theatre of New York and figure skating and explore finding a commonality about our specific disciplines,” said Villella, a former star principal dancer at New York City Ballet (and Founding Artistic Director of Miami City Ballet) who trained under ballet and Broadway legends George Balanchine and Jerome Robbins.
“I enjoy seeking a dramatic arc within pieces, which is a large part of Ice Theatre of New York’s goals -- to take an audience on a journey in an emotional way. Reveries does just that: Figure skating, with its ice and blades, extends the sense of glide that is not always available to us in the classical ballet canon.”
The last time Villella choreographed an ice ballet was in 1977 for a Dorothy Hamill television special. It was also when he met his future wife, champion ice skater Linda Carbonetto, who had represented Canada in the 1968 Olympics in Grenoble. Carbonetto was hired by Hamill to help Villella adapt his ballet choreography for the ice. They were married in 1980 and are parents of ballet mistress Crista Villella.
ICE: DANCE will also feature Heart, by choreographer JoAnna Mendl Shaw, founder and Artistic Director of Equus Projects; Inclusions, by Alberto Del Saz, Artistic Director of the Nickolais/Louis Company and Roots, by Ice Theatre of New York Artistic Director Douglas Webster, along with his acclaimed works such as Dare Greatly, Transitions, Falling Leaves and Unforgettable.
The entire program is 75 minutes long with one intermission. It features US Men’s Champion, Ryan Bradley, US Bronze Medalists, World Team Members, stars of Stars on Ice, and currently featured in “Aerial Ice” on America’s Got Talent, Kim Navarro and Brent Bommentre, 7-time British Champions and European Bronze Medalist, John Kerr, Italian Champion Elisa Angeli, Finnish Champion Jessica Huot, Junior Grand Prix Members Carly Donowick and Jonathon Hunt, 2-time US Silver Medalist Eve Chalom. Other performers include National Competitors Erin Reed, Patrick Connelly, Joel Dear and Tyrrell Gene and Russian international competitor Natalia Zaitseva.
“The commission of Edward Villella to choreograph for the Ice Theatre of New York ensemble is a significant and exciting continuation of our mission to collaborate with the dance community,” said Moira North, Founder and Director of Ice Theatre of New York.
The season also features a Gala Fund Raiser on Friday, October 25, 2013 honoring skating legend Kurt Browning and his prima ballerina wife, Sonia Rodriguez. The 7 pm performance is at Sky Rink, Chelsea Piers, Pier 61. The performance is followed with cocktails, dinner, an awards ceremony and other festivities at the Lighthouse, Pier 61, near 23rd Street and Hudson River. Gala tickets start at $400. Performance only tickets for the Friday, October 25 Gala are $45 and $25 for the Thursday, October 24 and Saturday, October 26 performances.
About Ice Theatre of New York Founded in 1984 by Moira North, Ice Theatre of New York (ITNY) has changed the face of figure skating by creating works that integrate the sensibilities of movement, music and art. Its mission is to elevate dance on ice as a performance art. Through its performances in both traditional and site-specific venues, ITNY presents ice dance that opens one's eyes to seeing skating in unexpected ways. ITNY was the first ice dance company to receive dance program funding from the National Endowment for the Arts, the New York State Council on the Arts and the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs. In addition to building and performing works of artistic merit, ITNY also reaches out to the next generation of skaters and audiences through education, community outreach and training programs.
And if you've never attended an Ice Theatre of New York show, here's what you've missed:
Ice Theatre of New York is holding their 2012 Benefit Gala and Performance at Sky Rink, Chelsea Piers tonight at 7 pm. The performance at Sky Rink, Chelsea Piers will feature this year's honoree Mr. Debonair -- Richard Dwyer -- and his Celebrity Dwyer Girls: Tai Babilonia, Dorothy Hamill, Linda Fratianne and JoJo Starbuck. Ryan Bradley, the 2011 US National champion will also be performing with the Ice Theatre company. Doesn't
this sound like an amazing show? Sigh...I can't make it this year. But wait! Ice Theatre is streaming the gala live and it will be hosted by one of my favs Michael Buckley of What the Buck! Michael Buckley (at right) is a huge huge figure skating (and gymnastics) fan so what a fun host he will be. I'll be checking out the live stream which starts around 6:45 pm ET.
Be Good Johnny Weir airs Mondays 10/9 central on Logo. The show follows two time Olympian and three time US national figure skating champion Johnny Weir as he tries to find a career outside of skating, while training for the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics.
This is the next to last episode of Be Good Johnny Weir Season 2 -- waaaahh! My only solace is that Johnny is back in competition this season and will be skating at two Grand Prix of Figure Skating events -- Cup of Russia (November 9-12) and Trophee Eric Bompard (November 16-18). A few weeks ago, he competed at the Finlandia Trophy and came in fourth.
The big big news from Episode 9 is that Johnny's skating spectacular will NOT be in Las Vegas after all. According to Johnny, he got all caught up with the Vegas concept and let his agent/manager Tara Modlin talk him into it. But now that he's back in NYC, he realizes what a mistake it would be to have the show in Vegas, which he has called "Disneyland for old people." To confirm his gut feeling, Johnny meets up with friend and designer Chris Benz to get his take. Chris definitely sees the advantage of a huge Vegas show; however, the infrastructure of Johnny's fans and family is in NYC and home court advantage can't be flown in. Chris doesn't see Johnny's show in Vegas.
So Johnny breaks the news to Tara who is busily booking Vegas while also preparing for her wedding. He tells her to take out her magic wand and just make the show in NYC instead! Tara calls him "honey" which is code for "clueless wonder" and explains that logistically it is too late to change the venue so the spectacular must wait if he insists on having it in NYC.
But as one door closes, another opens and in walks Jirina Ribbens, event producer and executive director of Ice Theatre of New York (ITNY). ITNY combines skating with artistry in very unique ways and Jirina was asked to help produce Johnny's spectacular given her experience putting on ITNY shows. Tara tells Jirina that the spectacular is on hold and her services will not be needed at this time. Jirina understands and says "New York is the ultimate market to succeed in" so she will be on standby.
Jirina has also brought some great news. Every year ITNY holds their fundraising gala in October and chooses an honoree (past honorees have included Dorothy Hamill, Nancy Kerrigan and Dick Button). For 2011, ITNY has chosen Johnny and will call their gala "Dare to be Different." This is a nice consolation prize for Johnny -- Even though his spectacular is on hold, he will take part in the ITNY show. Johnny meets up with choreographer Nina Petrenko to create a new program for the gala and decides to skate to Meditation, a number Mother Patti always wanted him to skate to. Johnny tells Nina that he wants to take advantage of the fact that his "ass just keeps growing like a Kardashian sister." Nina and Johnny choreograph a very lovely number.
The other big big news is that Tara is planning her Disney princess wedding! Johnny wants to be the maid of honor but Tara says that for once in his life, he is NOT the center of attention and NO, he cannot be the maid of honor. In the last scene of Episode 9, Tara goes wedding dress shopping with her mother and Johnny at the Mark Ingram Bridal Atelier. Johnny watches Tara squeal with delight as she tries on dress after dress. Finally he can't stand it anymore and tries on a dress of his own. He realizes that watching Tara and him feeling pretty in a wedding dress has inspired him to fall in love. Dammit -- he too deserves happiness and he needs to try harder to find his soulmate. Johnny Weir is back on the hunt for love!
Next on Episode 10 (the last episode -- waaaahh!) of Be Good Johnny Weir Season 2 on Logo...Johnny finds his true love and is honored by Ice Theatre of New York.