Stars on Ice
Kurt List

Gretchen Wilson Country on Ice - Philadelphia, PA - Nov. 8, 2006

written by Tara

I wasn't too sure what to expect going into it... I knew the skating would be great, but since I'm not a big country music fan, had no idea what we were getting ourselves into. I was pleasantly surprised... it was actually pretty good... although it was pretty loud when Gretchen was performing live... the recorded music the skaters used wasn't bad.

The cast was Todd, Michael Weiss, Caryn Kadavy, Elizabeth Punsalan and Jerod Swallow, Jennifer Robinson, Amber Corwin, Kurt Browning and Irina Slutskaya. Totmianina and Marinin were listed as part of the cast (I think they were the replacement for Jenni & Todd who couldn't make it because of the new baby, but I could be wrong) but weren't there for some reason.. hopefully they aren't injured.

Our seats were really quite good. We were high enough that the on ice people weren't in our vision. We had an extra seat next to us that wasn't taken, so Gail moved down there at the start of the second half, so we were able to enjoy the show together!!! We did get recognition from Todd when we were waving our Todd penants!!! Gail also had her Canadian flag waving for Jennifer and Kurt, and they both gave her a little wave!!

I'll do my best as far as the music stuff... I wasn't familiar with it all.

The opening was the cast skating to one of Gretchen's songs... sorry that I don't remember which one. The guys were wearing black leather pants and a short sleeve cowboy type shirt and cowboy hats. The girls had on black sleeveless dresses with a silver belt. Did I mention the guys had on leather pants?!?!?!?!?!? At one point the guys all did a push up or two!!!!!!!!

One complaint I have is that they didn't introduce the skaters in the intro... it wasn't until the very end of the show. I'd say a majority of the crowd was there for Gretchen, so it would've been nice for them to acknowledge the skaters so the non skating fans would know who they were watching.

Amber Corwin: This was the first time I had ever seen her live. I forgot that she was even in the show... when I saw her in the opening it took me a minute to figure out who she was. I enjoyed her second program more than the first... her second was to one of Gretchen's songs... I think it was called "California Girl" or something like that... very cute!!! I really don't remember the music she used for her first program.

Michael Weiss: Mike skated to Lonestar's "I'm Already There" for his first program.... WOW. I really enjoyed it... I'm hoping he might use that at SOI, I would really like to see it again... I believe I saw some figures in the very beginning of the program.. very nice. His second program was to Gretchen's "One Bud Wiser"... it was ok, but I preferred his first program. He was pretty well received... especially when he did his back flips!!!

Caryn Kadavy: She was her usual elegant self. She skated to one of Gretchen's songs, and another song that I'm familiar with but I just can't think of the name of it!! She's very nice to watch. She needed a retake on one of her jumps, but other than that, skated very well.

Liz and Jerod: It was so nice to see them on the ice again. We haven't seen them since COI, I don't remember what year it was!!! They are still very nice to watch. They both looked great!!! Again, I don't remember the music, but both of their programs were very nice and had some pretty nifty lifts in them!!!

Jennifer Robinson: She was the first one out after the opening number.... I'm really sorry that I don't remember more of the music. She looked great as well... her jumps were pretty solid.

Kurt Browning: Kurt was Kurt... LOL. He skated to Gretchen's "Rebel Child".... very appropriate.. LOL. He interacted with Gretchen and the band... starting his program on stage, and also ending it up with Gretchen. He can be such a ham!!! His second program was great as well... he did lots of his fancy footwork in the second program... the crowd really responded very well to him!!!

Irina Slutskaya: Irina skated to Dolly Parton's "9 to 5" and "Redneck Woman" by Gretchen. She looked great. My mom didn't recognize her the way she had her hair, when I told her who it was she said "oh that's why she was so good". She had to do a retake on 1 jump... the crowd was really behind her... took her 2 or 3 attempts, but she finally managed a nice triple toe.

Last, but certainly not least................ Todd!!!!!!

Todd's first program was Gretchen's "Politically Uncorrect". He wore black pants with a red cowboy type shirt (if you saw pics from the Michael Weiss show in Sept, Gail said it was the same shirt he wore then). He looked very good. He's still unphotographable.... LOL... I'll post some of the pics mom took. He really seemed to be enjoying himself out there. It's hard to say how the crowd reacted to his numbers since he was paired with Gretchen for both.

For his second program, Todd skated to Gretchen's "Come to Bed" I think that's what Gretchen said the song was called, but I can't seem to find it anywhere, so maybe it's a new one. Todd wore the purple shirt that he wore when he skated to "Crazy" last year at the Boitano show. Again his jumps were right on.... I'm pretty sure he did a triple axel in this program, which would mean the ankle is feeling pretty good!!

The finale was again to one of Gretchen's songs.. I believe it was "All Jacked Up".. nice upbeat number, and the skaters really seemed to be enjoying themselves. The guys had on white shirts and a camel colored pair of what looked like a suede material pants and cowboy hats!! They all looked very nice. The guys did side by side double axels, the girls did jumps as well.. I think triple toes, but I could be wrong. It was a nice ending to a great evening.

As I mentioned earlier, they didn't announce who the skaters were until the end of the show. Once the show was over, Gretchen handed the microphone to one of the skaters to introduce them all.... and the lucky microphone skater was Todd!!!! He introduced every skater but himself... LOL

Since Todd already had the microphone, he was the emcee for the retakes!!!! He did a great job! He thanked the audience for being "one of the best I can remember" and said maybe they could do it every year, if Gretchen and the band would agree. Then I forgot what he was saying, but he ended it by saying "It's all jacked up" in reference to Gretchen's song. Someone in the audience yelled "I love you Todd, or we love you Todd" and he said "I love you too... I love all of you"... very sweet. We were waiting for the skaters with retakes to get ready, and he said "man it's taking them awhile to change their clothes"... LOL... I guess he was running out of things to say... he did a great job though. Todd came out at the end of the retakes and thanked us all for coming and staying for the retakes, and mentioned the show would be on NBC on Dec. 23 I believe.

It was a great show, and I'm looking forward to seeing it when it airs on NBC. The skaters were all fabulous, and the music was pretty good as well (much better than the Ashanti music from Sarah's show last year).