kurtfiles

 
Home
Profile
Record
Articles
News
Photo
Stars on Ice
Music
References
Miscellaneous
 
1987
1988
1989
1990
1991
1992
1993
1994
1995
1996
1997
1998
1999
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008
2009
2010
2011
2012
2013



Holiday Festival on Ice

Spectacular lineup includes Kurt Browning, Jennifer Robinson, Jamie Sale and David Pelletier

Source: The Kitchener Record
Date: December 7, 2002
Author: Julie-Marie Innes

KITCHENER -- When world champion skater Brian Orser takes to the ice in Kitchener on Wednesday night, the audience is destined to be star-struck once again.

Orser, however, will be breathing a sigh of relief. He is the director and choreographer for Holiday Festival on Ice and is an admitted perfectionist when it comes to presenting skating shows.

"I'm wearing a lot of hats for this one and I'm always kind of stressed," Orser said during a phone interview from his Ottawa home.

"Yesterday I was in Toronto working with my music guy to get the songs edited properly and I have to organize everything on paper before I get to Kitchener, every step, and that's a challenge because it's hard without all the skaters. Somehow I do it."

Despite his pre-show angst, Orser is confident in the spectacular lineup for this annual festival, especially when the names Kurt Browning, Jennifer Robinson, Jamie Sale and David Pelletier are included.

Their stunning performances have earned them international recognition and respect making them true symbols of Canadian excellence.

Sale and Pelletier emerged from last year's Olympic controversy not only winning the gold medal but also the hearts of millions of fans.

Browning will be in town fresh from his Gotta Skate and Stars on Ice performances and his routine should exude creativity, flare and the trademark Browning warmth. He's bringing along a six-year-old boy to skate with him in his festive contribution, Working Elves Blues.

The youngster could have a skating career in his future because he is the son of renowned Canadian choreographer and skater Sandra Bezic.

New young stars Jeffrey Buttle, the current Four Continents champion; Shawn Sawyer, the 2002 junior Canadian champion; and Ludmilla Nelidina, the 2002 silver medallist at the ISU Junior Grand Prix, will perform in the show, which will be recorded for a CBC special to air on Dec. 15.

The traditional song Joy to the World launches Holiday Festival on Ice and Orser says he has tried to keep the event light and happy.

"I've always gone for the more traditional Christmas myself. When I was a child it was absolutely one of my favourite times of the year for many reasons. My birthday is Dec. 18 so that was always exciting.

"It's different for me now, I've had some personal tragedies that have happened at Christmas time. My mom died at Christmas, my brother died just before Christmas and my grandmother died a couple of years ago on the anniversary of my mom's death. It was just too strange."

Orser turns 42 on Dec. 18 but, despite his age, the nickname Mr. Triple Axel remains. He is in top condition and in the last few years has been known to execute his signature move during skating shows or pro competitions.

For his routine Wednesday he's chosen Garth Brooks' version of one of his favourite Christmas tunes, The Most Wonderful Time of the Year.

Orser's passion for skating and performing knows no bounds, something he hopes young skaters will value if they consider skating as a career.

"The most important thing is that they remember why they got involved in the sport in the first place.

"We get so wrapped up in medals and placements sometimes that we can't forget, we just love to skate."