2023 Canadian Stars on Ice Tour

SkateGuard

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@SkateGuard's Twitter thread review with 9 clips from the Halifax show: https://twitter.com/SkateGuardBlog/status/1652134700335394816

Thanks for sharing @Sylvia! If anyone has any questions, I'll try my best to answer! :)

A rough music list from memory in case anyone's wondering...

Opening # - All These Things That I've Done (The Killers)
Second Set Opening # James Bond medley inc Diamonds Are Forever (Shirley Bassey) and a beautiful instrumental version of You Only Live Twice (Satoko Miyahara had a solo section in this part)

Kurt Browning #1 - Please Forgive Me (David Gray)
Kurt Browning #2 - Who Are You (The Who)

Elvis Stojko #1 - ?? (mid-tempo upbeat)
Elvis Stojko #2 - Jump (Van Halen)

Kurt Browning/Elvis Stojko duet - Raise A Little Hell (Trooper) - the video screens played older footage of Kurt and Elvis' and they recreated it - really fun number!

Madeline Schizas #1 - Don't Rain On My Parade (Glee cover of the Barbra Streisand song)
Madeline Schizas #2 - Everybody Wants To Be A Cat

Jason Brown #1 - Everybody (Backstreet's Back)/Larger Than Life (Backstreet Boys)
Jason Brown #2 - The Impossible Dream (Josh Groban cover)

Loena Hendrickx #1 - Circus (Britney Spears) remix
Loena Hendricks #2 - ?? (very much an Ibiza/Denise Biellmann vibe)

Keegan Messing #1- Grace Kelly (Mika)
Keegan Messing #2 - ??? hipster hoedown kind of vibe

Patrick Chan #1 - Wicked Game
Patrick Chan #2 - I Hear A Symphony (Cody Fry) - I guess this song went viral on the TikTok thing the young people use :lol: I thought it was Michael Buble!

Chock/Bates #1 - ??? slow number - kind of a modern version of an Evanescence vibe
Chock/Bates #2 - Let's Dance remix

Gilles/Poirier #1 - You Must Love Me and Don't Cry For Me Argentina from Evita (Madonna)
Gilles/Poirier #2 - Annie's Song, Thank God I'm A Country Boy (John Denver)

Knierim/Frazier #1 - Shallow (Lady Gaga/Bradley Cooper)
Knierim/Frazier #2 - slower moody piece - kind of a modern take on a Phil Collins/Peter Gabriel vibe

Satoko Miyahara #1 - ??? beautiful music - instrumental then vocal
Satoko Miyahara #2 - Ne Me Quitte Pas

Alissa Czisny #1 - Chasing Cars (female cover)
 
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Alilou

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I think that's a bit of an exaggeration. Ticket sales look on track for what we should expect from a skating event at this point, as well as a lot of live events.
I clicked on the link to buy tickets for each city, and almost none have been sold. Vancouver has ONLY the on-ice seats on the long sides sold. Everything else is available. It's pretty much the same for each of the other cities I mentioned. I think I could actually count the number of tickets that have been sold, it's so few.
 

Teenes

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I clicked on the link to buy tickets for each city, and almost none have been sold. Vancouver has ONLY the on-ice seats on the long sides sold. Everything else is available. It's pretty much the same for each of the other cities I mentioned. I think I could actually count the number of tickets that have been sold, it's so few.
Sold, or sold out? If you click into the actual seat maps, large swathes of most sections have tickets sold in Vancouver. Yes, there are seats available in all the sections, but they've sold plenty of seats within those sections.
 

Alilou

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Sold, or sold out? If you click into the actual seat maps, large swathes of most sections have tickets sold in Vancouver. Yes, there are seats available in all the sections, but they've sold plenty of seats within those sections.
Must take another look. I keep checking as I'll prob buy tix if the date ends up working for me. Maybe it's because I'm clicking from the link on the original email from weeks ago.

ETA: got it - I just wasn't zooming in enough.
 
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Sylvia

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Jason's skater cam for the Halifax show: https://twitter.com/starsonice/status/1652661736724475905

ETA:

Someone other than Kurt doing media for CSOI ;) (April 27 before the Halifax show):

Also this Ontario article today:
 
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Sonata

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CSOI needs Elvis back purely for marketing. When Kurt initially decided to step away, audiences had Tessa and Scott to be excited about the next year, but there's nobody to bring in the casual fans right now. Half that audience doesn't know every name in the cast. Hardcore skating fans will always go, but they rely on the contingent of people who just buy tickets to see the guy they had a crush on in middle school. (No shade to casual fans -- I am one.)
Agree. Kurt and Elvis are the only reason I bought tickets last year after years away from SOI. They brought me back this year, and it was a delight to see them and Patrick. (I'd say they were the 3 who had the loudest applause from casual fans.) I was also looking forward to seeing people like Loena (!) and Jason Brown in person. It was mostly a stellar lineup.

But I am not sure I will return next year if Elvis is not there. What I'll say about Kurt and Elvis is that even in their "younger" days, they knew how to entertain and seemed appreciative of the crowds. It's a bit offputting to see skaters who don't seem to want to be there or know their steps and don't go to the trouble to look enthusiastic during group numbers. Traveling hours in the rain has to be worth it for the audience. Some of those clips they showed from the 1990s-early 2000s made me nostalgic for those days when skating popularity was at its peak. I suspect a lot of the crowd was there due to their fandom dating back to the 90s.
 

Alilou

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Agree. Kurt and Elvis are the only reason I bought tickets last year after years away from SOI. They brought me back this year, and it was a delight to see them and Patrick. (I'd say they were the 3 who had the loudest applause from casual fans.) I was also looking forward to seeing people like Loena (!) and Jason Brown in person. It was mostly a stellar lineup.

But I am not sure I will return next year if Elvis is not there. What I'll say about Kurt and Elvis is that even in their "younger" days, they knew how to entertain and seemed appreciative of the crowds. It's a bit offputting to see skaters who don't seem to want to be there or know their steps and don't go to the trouble to look enthusiastic during group numbers. Traveling hours in the rain has to be worth it for the audience. Some of those clips they showed from the 1990s-early 2000s made me nostalgic for those days when skating popularity was at its peak. I suspect a lot of the crowd was there due to their fandom dating back to the 90s.
I had a couple of thoughts about this - first was really? That's disappointing, especially since everyone else is encouraging people to go see the show.
My second thought was perhaps they're not showing enthusiasm because they're concentrating so hard to remember all the steps because they only had one week of rehearsals when back in the day the cast had 6 weeks of rehearsals. I would think that makes a difference. I know I'm lucky living in Van - by the time they get to us they've ironed all the kinks out.
 

kalamalka

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But I am not sure I will return next year if Elvis is not there. What I'll say about Kurt and Elvis is that even in their "younger" days, they knew how to entertain and seemed appreciative of the crowds. It's a bit offputting to see skaters who don't seem to want to be there or know their steps and don't go to the trouble to look enthusiastic during group numbers. Traveling hours in the rain has to be worth it for the audience. Some of those clips they showed from the 1990s-early 2000s made me nostalgic for those days when skating popularity was at its peak. I suspect a lot of the crowd was there due to their fandom dating back to the 90s.
I'm sorry that the attitude of some of the other skaters put you off. I'm one of the people who goes to SOI in spite of Elvis being in the cast, not because of. Yes, he works at entertaining, but never as much at skating, IMO. I was never a fan.

I probably wouldn't go to SOI in any event if I didn't need to accompany someone who needs help to be able to attend an event. The show has always been good, but the cost for a couple of hours entertainment in no way competes for me with what I get from attending a competition, including regional events and JGPs, where the ticket cost is negligible. Our on-ice tickets for SOI are only I think $25 less than 4 days of Skate Canada International.
 

Sonata

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I'm sorry that the attitude of some of the other skaters put you off. I'm one of the people who goes to SOI in spite of Elvis being in the cast, not because of. Yes, he works at entertaining, but never as much at skating, IMO. I was never a fan.

I probably wouldn't go to SOI in any event if I didn't need to accompany someone who needs help to be able to attend an event. The show has always been good, but the cost for a couple of hours entertainment in no way competes for me with what I get from attending a competition, including regional events and JGPs, where the ticket cost is negligible. Our on-ice tickets for SOI are only I think $25 less than 4 days of Skate Canada International.
I was not an Elvis fan either, I am actually a little perplexed as to how I’m now willing to travel hours to see him and Kurt. I suppose it’s begrudging respect and in part because it’s motivating to see 50 year olds jump and spin at this level and also because there’s not that many chances to see their performances.

Just to be clear, the show was great! I am trying to be vague about who was not enthusiastic - I sympathize with learning the steps fast, but at some point, you smile even though you’ve goofed and show your professional face for the audience. It’s something I couldn’t unsee once I noticed it. I’ve always seen this show in the East and don’t expect perfection. Otherwise I would encourage those who are on the fence to go to the show this year, the lineup was even better than last year and there was more variety. I hope they show this one on CBC.
 

victorskid

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I was in my usual location at the end of the ice, not an on-ice seat but just behind those. I did not pick up on any lack of enthusiasm in the group numbers. Perhaps I was looking at the "overall" and not focused on individuals. I certainly was not disappointed at all and recommend trying to see the show, if you can.
 

screech

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I kind of wish they would have done something with the other skaters doing bits of classic Kurt performances for his last SOI. Like Patrick replicating part of Casablanca. Jason doing a bit of Nyah. Keegan doing some Singin' in the Rain, etc
 

SkateGuard

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It's a bit offputting to see skaters who don't seem to want to be there or know their steps and don't go to the trouble to look enthusiastic during group numbers.

I didn't pick up on anyone not looking enthusiastic at all. There were definitely skaters in the cast who connected more with the audience than others - some people have that stage presence/charisma and 'it' factor and others may not as much (yet). I thought the group numbers were lovely - and I'll bet by the end of the tour they will be even more finessed.
 

Former Lurve Goddess

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Yesterday’s Ottawa show was the earliest in the tour I’ve ever seen. I’ve been to CSOI in Vancouver, Toronto and Hamilton previously so seeing the show with the skaters having less practice time was interesting. But I thought the group numbers (especially the Bond one) were great and overall it was a fab show.
 

victorskid

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Damn you terrible Ottawa transit and Canadian Tire Centre being so hard to get to for the car-less!
I’m very sorry I missed the show. December on TV it is…
For those with cars, yesterday's rain and traffic problems significantly increased the travel time to get to CTC - it took me almost an hour to get there and some folks were still arriving almost 1/2 an hour into the show. On the plus side, I think this was the biggest audience at SOI there for a long time.

Despite the even heavier rain on the way home, it was about 1/2 an hour drive :)
 
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MLIS

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I also attended the show yesterday in Ottawa (and the weather was indeed terrible, and getting out of that parking lot always convinces me that this is the LAST time I will be attending anything at CTC, thank you very much). Enjoyed it overall, my two complaints would be too many downbeat, ballad-y, angsty numbers and hardly any group numbers, not even little transitions between numbers like they used to have. I know they only had one week of rehearsals, but those were always my favourite part of SOI and I really missed them. Agreed that it would have been brilliant to have a group number paying homage to some of Kurt's iconic programs over the years. I also didn't feel that any skaters were unenthusiastic during the group numbers, but a few definitely looked tentative/unsure of the choreography.

I'm another one who bought tickets in spite of Elvis being in the cast, not because of him (don't dislike him, but my heart has always belonged to Kurt and I never developed a fondness for Elvis), but there's no denying that he got by far the loudest cheers and reactions after Kurt. The only other skater who came close was Patrick Chan. The audience was appreciative of all the skaters and cheered loudly and warmly, but the response to Elvis and, slightly lesser extent Patrick, was notably more.

FWIW, my 9 year old, who knows nothing about skating and has no existing fandoms, so was only reacting to what they were seeing, had the following favourites: Madison and Evan, Alexa and Brandon, and Alyssa Czisny.

Last point: the music was way, way too loud, at least where we were sitting (on the end near the skater's entrance, a few rows up from the ice).

Edited to add: I feel like this post is overall more negative than I intended. I did very much enjoy the show, and thought the line up in general was stellar. Many of the best skaters in the world. I would definitely encourage people to attend!
 
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Former Lurve Goddess

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For those with cars, yesterday's rain and traffic problems significantly increased the travel time to get to CTC - it took me almost an hour to get there and some folks were still arriving almost 1/2 an hour into the show. On the plus side, I think this was the biggest audience at SOI there for a long time.

Despite the even heavier rain on the way home, it was about 1/2 an hour drive :)
Other half and I drove from my parents place which is about an hour east of Ottawa. It took us almost as long to go west across the city to the Canadian Tire Centre as it did to get to the city limits. We made it just in time!
 

luckiest1

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I’ll be attending the show in Hamilton since there is no show in London this year. I’m glad to hear Patrick is getting some good applause! I am mostly looking forward to seeing him, Elvis, Jason, Keegan & Kurt. What a great men’s line up!
 

Skate Talker

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I'm another one who bought tickets in spite of Elvis being in the cast, not because of him (don't dislike him, but my heart has always belonged to Kurt and I never developed a fondness for Elvis), but there's no denying that he got by far the loudest cheers and reactions after Kurt.
In his competitive days, I could respect Elvis's work ethic and his consistency with the technically difficult jumps. (Of course I will admit there was a time when Rod Black's non-stop OTT coverage of Elvis made it hard to even do that. I recall the year Elvis was not even at Canadians due to injury but almost every sentence out of Rod Black's mouth included a reference to Elvis and his greatness.) Anyway, having been spoiled by Kurt's charismatic competitive performances and mastery of the blade, I could never really warm up to Elvis.

Nonetheless, I much preferred his competitive numbers to his exhibition numbers, which to me seemed to be just a lot of pointing fingers at the audience, a few hip shakes and making eye contact to elicit fan-girl screams. Every exhibition number was the same moves, just to a different tune, which could have been any rock music for all the interpretation he put into it. Even Keegan shows more variety and is much more charismatic. I am totally mystified by Elvis's continued popularity with audiences.
 

screech

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I know that Jeff Buttle is the choreographer and director for all the SOI tours, but when did he last participate in the show? I just realized that he's not skating in it.
 

victorskid

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I know that Jeff Buttle is the choreographer and director for all the SOI tours, but when did he last participate in the show? I just realized that he's not skating in it.
Jeff suffered an injury a couple of years ago that hampered his skating - according to the Stars on Ice website he was part of the cast 2005-2018 and 2022 seasons but I'm not sure he did all of the shows last year. He is planning to return to university in a few months.
 

Allskate

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I'm not surprised Elvis is still popular because there always have been people who liked his style of skating. I never enjoyed Elvis's skating, and I thought he was dismissive of the criticism of his skating and didn't do enough to improve. He never was a reason for me to buy a ticket. But, having said that, he never would be a reason for me not to buy a ticket. There wouldn't be very many skaters who would lead me to not go to a show. If I actually dislike a skater's skating, I can always get up and stretch. I'm probably not going to be a fan of all the skaters.

Assuming I was able to go to a show, the real question for me is whether there would be a sufficient number of skaters that I like to be worth the price. In this year's Canadian SOI show, there are a number of skaters I would really like to see. Kurt, Satoko, C&B, Jason. Add in Isabeau for the American show. I would like to see what her skating is like in person. I'm sure I would enjoy most of the other skaters.

I don't think the SOI group numbers can possibly be as well developed as they were in the golden age of pro skating because so many of the show's skaters today are still competing and they probably aren't as willing to devote as much time to tour rehearsals. Plus, the SOI tours are significantly shorter now, so the investment in rehearsals for group numbers probably does not make as much sense.
 

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