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May 21, 2008 > Theatre on Ice

Theatre on Ice

By Dustin Findley

Jumps, spins, choreography, dancing, movement, synchronized performance, and theatrical drama... on ice!

Theatre on Ice is team figure skating that incorporates theatre, drama and dance choreography. The greater Tri-City area has its own Theatre on Ice Team, the Ice Crystals sponsored by the Peninsula Skating Club (PSC). The Ice Crystals started at the novice level in 2003 is now a co-ed Junior Level team that calls Shark's Ice - Fremont its home. With home ice in Fremont, many team members are from the greater Tri-City area.

In order to compete successfully, a team must demonstrate all components of figure skating. Performances include speed, agility, strength and coordination. This is a sport that relies on individual efforts and skills that blend with all other members to create a unified presentation. Teams are dependent on group efforts and exacting movements, balanced between breakneck speeds and slower, precise rhythms. Although team members - ages 7 to 17 - skate at multiple skill levels, they must work together to be successful. "In a sport like figure skating that is so individualized, this gives them a team aspect, where they get to showcase their skills and also support each other as a team," Golding said.

During the official season these athletes participate in competitions and events approved by U.S. Figure Skating, and perform in local exhibitions. They have performed exhibitions at multiple local ice show events including the holiday show "Jingle Blades" held at the HP Pavilion, and a charity fund-raiser to support the Lucille Packard Children's Hospital at Stanford. During the year, several exhibition performances are held at Sharks Ice-Fremont

Team Manager Kim Golding said that people might think of Theatre on Ice like Disney on Ice, only on a smaller, more personal scale, but just as entertaining. Skating skills are combined with exacting choreography to produce a visually entertaining synchronized effort. In order to achieve the coordination for each presentation, many hours are spent practicing both on and off the ice. The Ice Crystals recently competed at the Spring Jubilee held in San Jose May 17th where they performed two programs to demonstrate their versatility on the ice: "Season of Love" inspired by the musical "Rent" and "Speedway" whose name says it all.

Although the competitive season ends in June, the Ice Crystals practice year round and are looking for skaters. Eligible skaters must at least qualify at a "pre-preliminary" level of the US figure Skating Organization. Although the cost of travel has, so far, prohibited the team from traveling outside California, they have been invited to national competitions on the East Coast and plan to raise the funds necessary for the trip in 2009.

For questions about membership or how to support the team, call Team Manager Kim Golding (510) 676-5585 or visit http://www.icecrystals.org/


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