Stars on Ice
Kurt in SOI
Creative Team

Chrysler Stars On Ice Review - Hamilton, ON - April 22, 2000

written by Tina

Down to our third and last (wah) show... I guess the second for the weekend. We hopped a bus to Hamilton and got out right near the Coliseum - went underground and up again and found ourselves staring at this really huge long line (you Canadians get to your skating shows really early!!!). Got in line, and found our seats...Ours were fourth row in the corner, right next to a tunnel.. so we were anticipating that Kurt would come out of that tunnel at the beginning, but no dice...

We're sitting there and suddenly I spot Kurt coming out of the main tunnel around the opposite side of the ice. He climbed on the boards and did a little walking around the boards before trying to come down... on his way down he apparently got a foot stuck on the boards, and started to wave people over to help him extricate himself. A woman came over and was sort of tugging at him ineffectually. Finally he waved a guy over who pulled his foot off and around and Kurt was free! He walked down further and then snatched a camera out of someone's hand and used it to take a picture of her. Then he turned around and sat on them and got a picture of them together, then turned up and took a picture of the audience - he seemed to use 4-5 of her pictures! Then he continued down and snatched someone's cap on the way and put it on.. he continued down and grabbed someone else's cane and started caning his way down the ice before taking someone's popcorn and continuing on his way. He then turned around and returned the cane and then the cap... he then started tossing the popcorn into the general crowd before turning around and starting to feed, and then pelt one woman in particular before finally stopping with the popcorn. He then returned the popcorn (I think), grabbed someone's else's camera, and took a picture of them and the crowd. There were two little girls sitting side by side on-ice, and he went up to them... looked at them, and suddenly picked them both up and started carrying them down the ice, depositing them in two empty on-ice seats... He looked at them, suddenly grabbed each by the hand, twirled them around and then stuck them back in the seat again, like there, that's better. Then he picked up the older one over his shoulder and carried her all the way down the ice and up into a whole section of empty seats... He sat her down next to him, and they sat there like they were watching the show, clapping a little, and just goofing. Then he looked like he was whispering something to her and she got up and ran down the stairs with him after her, acting like, where are you going? She quickly scooted to her seat and sat down and he ran by. He was going to continue when he noticed that the other little girl was still sitting there in the seat he had deposited her in... I think he forgot about her but when he saw her he realized she wasn't going to go back to her seat on her own. So he picked her up... she was flopped over his shoulder and then suddenly looked like he dropped her behind his back (like some of the pairs skaters do) so she went sliding head first and he ended up holding her by the ankles... somehow she ended up with him holding her in front of him, still dangling upside down by her ankles, and he handed her back to her father, upside down. They kept her upside down a little longer and Kurt kind of spanked her a little (kind of a drum roll on her butt) before moving away - I saw out of the corner of my eye her father turning her back right side up. Kurt then continued down the ice, grabbing a few other people's cameras and taking pictures. At one point he took off his nose and handed it to this middle-aged man sitting in the second row and took a picture of him...then the man handed the nose to the woman sitting next to him before handing it back to Kurt. He sat down next to another teenage girl and took a picture of the two of them.. then he pulled her up and tried to make her dance... demonstrating what he wanted her to do (lots of arm swinging and gyrating)...she was laughing and shaking her head... he finally went up behind her and started moving her arms for her. He went all the way to the end, and suddenly we hear this little kid's voice yelling "Kurt!! Kurt!!" Kurt spins around, looking for the source of the voice before finally spotting a little boy way up in the first row of the second tier. He waved at him and then turned around and indicated that the whole audience should wave (i did). He then started dancing around a little... paused...danced some more...and finally looked triumphant..wendy tells me that he was trying to get the little boy to dance (i hadn't seen him) and finally the little boy imitated him and he was happy. He grabbed an usher's flashlight and was playing with it a little when a woman held out a rose to him. He started walking to it, looked down and realized he still had the flashlight, turned around and looked like he was going to hurl it back at the usher before walking back and handing it to her. He then went and got the rose... about this point the satchel was sitting out on the ice so he stepped onto the ice and did his off-balance shuffle in his skate guards before making his way to the bag with his typical series of falls and crawling... He opened the bag and carefully deposited the rose in it..the lights went down and the opening number music started.

I love (I know I've said this a million times before) this opening number - the costumes, the lighting, the choreography, the music is just perfect. Love it.

I'm going to skip all the programs except funny Kurt stuff. Everyone was pretty on, the numbers were wonderful this is the fourth time I'm writing a review so I'm going to cease and desist.

Because of where we were sitting, Kurt actually crept out of the tunnel RIGHT next to our section and Wendy was sitting on the aisle on that side. Therefore whenever they opened the curtains to let him by, she heard them moving and quickly made me look... So we saw Kurt squatting by the wall and then quickly scooting/crawling his way over to the side of the ice to sit on the wall for the rose out of the bag... Since for some reason the whole first row behind the boards was empty where Kurt was sitting, this time he turned around and offered the flower out of his bag to a girl sitting on ice in front of him.. As he reached out, though, the flower suddenly drooped... He looked at it, kind of mortified, tried straightening it out, held it out to her again, it drooped....he took it in his hands and suddenly ripped the drooping stem off and handed her the top... she took it and he fell down... the lights went down while he was lying there... we kept watching, of course, saw him scoot over and grab his bag off the boards, crawl back to the tunnel and run out...

After B&E's program, Wendy once again directed my attention to the tunnel, where we saw Kurt sitting on the side of the steps with flashlight in hand... He started his whole flashlight thing shortly after that.

Then... Crash... such an amazing program... I love it so much...his choreography, his mannerisms, everything oozes... combines into an amazingly wonderful whole - if he doesn't perform this in the States at all next year so you guys can see it on TV it's a real shame. Of course, i think the same way about Ain't No Sunshine... what's with Canadians getting to see all the awesome Kurt programs? I think I should apply for Canadian citizenship..or at least Canadian TV =).

Old Friends is just getting better and better... I really like the effect of this number... very sentimental and nice.

Of course, throughout the latter part of the first act, Wendy and I had our eyes on these four center-ice on-ice seats that were empty throughout the whole first half. As soon as the lights went up, I was out of my seat and heading for them... we got there just before these two other ladies who were eyeing us and our seats... but we were there first!! =) So here we were, with the most amazing seats I have ever had in my entire life... center ice, on-ice... I was right on the line... it was incredible!!! We spent most of the rest of the intermission chatting.

Then the zebra couch was pushed out and we scooted back to our amazing seats and I quickly started taking picture after picture of Kurt changing position on the couch. Club AC started which was terrific from where we were... I kept alternating between clapping along and watching and taking pictures... Steven Cousins is so cool! He has a great smile and he is really funny and interacts with the audience very very well. At one point during his It's About That Walk number, while he was dancing at center ice, I swear he winked at me (I was looking through my viewfinder so I'm not 100% sure here)... I think it might have been for the camera and for the huge smile I had on under the camera. Then later in the same number he stopped again and I think he stuck his tongue out and gave me a big grin again...once again I was looking through my camera...

I think the skaters really do play to the camera, some of them. Tara certainly did - I think I saw her looking at my camera and sort of posing a little for me, which was cool...and also led me to take more pictures of her than I ever have before. I also had Steven Cousins playing to my camera and maybe a few of the others. =)

Josee and Meno and Sand were great, but then Kurt came out again for his duet with Tara which was awfully cute, as usual, and Kurt again had a big grin on his face for her... they're very much like a pairs team in the sense that they focus a lot on each other while skating. I think Kurt might have fumbled on one of his lifts of her because he didn't seem to have his hands in the right place, but he turned it into a bit of clowning around and covered it up well.

Bourne & Kraatz are wonderful. Mack the Knife has such atmosphere, such a mood to it.. and they were really close half the time!!

Ebbtide...wonderful...We Like To Party...really energetic...American Woman, more Tara playing to my camera =)...

Don Quixote was really cute only my memory card (yes I actually finished a 64 MB card at this point - 410 pictures) ran out just as he was doing pushups right in front of us, so I didn't get any pictures of that or him swinging up onto the rope while I changed my camera to the last card.

Then... Play that Funky Music...can't get enough of this program... wonderful dancing, though only a double axel this time, though a beautiful one... I think, but I'm not sure, that at one point he actually acknowledged me and my camera while dancing... but like I said, viewfinder, can't see clearly...

Then, the finale... wow. Love this finale too... Great music and great choreography... I was watching Josee and Brian's lift and taking a picture, b/c I'd missed it every other show... I put down the camera, glanced to my left, and suddenly saw Lloyd lifting Isabelle really high over his head going right by us... I said "oh my god!" out of surprise... Kat and Wendy said they both heard me... and I think Isabelle grinned a little in amusement ... I could swear she heard me. I think Steven Cousins acknowledged us a bit more, or at least grinned big in our direction, during the finale... Being on-ice, especially in such a prime location, really gets you skater recognition if not playing to you...and I think it gets the skater something - I really like Steven Cousins now after this whole week's of events, and I even like Tara better than I used to =).

After the bows, Kurt had the mic and he did his whole see you next year thing! I was watching Steven Cousins b/c I knew he came over to our side of the ice for bows but he went by further down the ice. Shae-Lynn came over though, and shook our hands (i mouthed "wonderful job" at her). I kept keeping an eye on Kurt at center ice but was distracted when I realized that Lu Chen was making her way towards us... she shook my hand and when she got to Wendy, her face brightened in recognition and she kind of said hi and shook Wendy's hand before moving on...Wendy was too taken aback to really respond. Then after they all gathered at center ice and were bowing... and they were hanging loose, Kurt suddenly kind of bent down a bit and was pointing directly in our direction with a kind of i see you grin on his face... he pointedly pointed at us like he was trying to get our attention and some acknowledgement from us... I think for several minutes or at least very long seconds. Wendy and I both weren't sure if he was actually pointing at us or not (though we later realized there was nobody behind us for a few feet)... he waved a little, kind of like he was showing me what to do...like a..hello? hello?? come on wave back at me kind of wave...so I tentatively waved back... he then waved bigger with a smile on his face, like, good, you saw me... and then I waved really big with a big smile... and suddenly thought, hey wait what if he really is waving at someone behind me, felt sheepish, and kind of slowed down my wave...then just turned it to clapping... I think Wendy did something really similar, so he must have had this experience of identical reactions from the two girls standing side by side. It was amazing, though, because he seriously kept on pointing until he was sure that we had realized he had seen us. And b/c Wendy and I would never believe he'd acknowledge us, it took a while, believe me! Before everyone could disperse, though, Kurt lifted the microphone again and said, those toronto people aren't going to get all the fun..we're not quite done yet... we all got really excited... he said "we have a mini-retirement to announce today" ... we got all apprehensive ... then he said something about Doug Ladret from Hough and Ladret, great pairs team that skated with SOI for longer than Doug would probably want Kurt to tell... said they never got a proper sendoff so they wanted to now... Got Doug to come down to the ice... Steven and Todd lifted him up on their shoulders with Lloyd behind kind of squatting down, ready to catch him... They all cheered him and thanked him, took a collective bow together with him in the middle, and then went off the ice together... and that was it for the show! Sigh... a great ending to a great year of Stars on Ice...can't wait for next year!!!