Creator/Choreographer: Robin Cousins
Producer: Jamie Wilson
Reviewer: Paul Downham
Dancing on Ice may have finished on our television screens earlier this year, but the appetite for live ice shows continues with a third production hitting the North West in as many weeks playing to a packed audience. This time Robin Cousins brings his ICE show to The Lowry in Salford.
Cousins, one of the most recognisable names in ice dance after Torvill and Dean has handpicked 14 incredibly talented skaters, put them on one rink to showcase speed, style, skill and grace. The intimacy of seeing ice dance in a theatre really brings home just what an unbelievably complex and challenging genre of dance this is.
The entire show is performed to a pre recorded backing track under the direction of Maurice Luttikhuis which spans all genres. Even Lady Gaga’s Bad Romance makes an appearance in the second act to accompany a routine that the Lady herself would be proud of!
From the graceful opening Winterscape sequence, this show wows and as the first act progresses so does the tempo and the daring of those on stage. It is evident watching the double and triple Axel spins and death spirals that on such an intimate stage there is no room for error.
The second act brings rhythm and swing time to the forefront opening with a pulsating percussion number, to which you can’t help tapping your feet and clapping along as the lighting rig admirably keeps up with the blades of all 14 skaters on the ice.
While it seems unfair to single anyone of the 14 skaters out on stage for higher praise that the other, a special mention should go to Michael Solonoski, who in the second act performed an unbelievable complex ice dance while singing live. The total control on both the ice and vocally was truly outstanding.
David Shields provides a basic yet striking set in front of which the magic happens as well as an array of sequin-heavy costumes. Tim Mitchells lighting brings the blank canvass of ice to life with an ever-changing sea of colour.
If you are planning on seeing the show to witness the talents of Mr Cousins then sadly you will disappointed as the on ice action is left to the blades of those younger. What Cousins does bring to the show is a redefined vision of ice dance for the 21st century.
Runs until 20th April 2014