Stars on Ice
Kurt in SOI
Creative Team

Canadian Stars On Ice Review - Hamilton, ON - April 24, 2004

written by Andrea Durkac

The month of April brings Stars On Ice to Canada and each and ever April we must make our "Annual" trip to Hamilton to see what we will be treated to on the ice for this years show. The theme for this years SOI was "Time" and actually having read many reviews about the show while it was touring in the US I've read mixed reviews about the show. But one has to see for themselves in order to really have their own opinion. Well I saw the show this past weekend in Hamilton and I am ready to share my thoughts/views on the show.

The show started pretty much on time this year, gathering by my watch of course. Before the show actually started , an announcer would come on here and there to make those special announcements, and some were pretty humorous. Especially the last announcement just before the lights went down ~ "due to unforseen circumstances, we regret to inform you that Sonja Henni will not be able to skate during tonight's show." That certainly brought laugher throughout the arena.

Once the lights went down, spotlight was on Kurt Browning and he came out , microphone in hand. HUGE applause from the audience of course. Because this show was being taped for TV, he started the show off with a little "introduction" explaining that the theme of this years show is "Time" and also mentioned that this will be "Farewell" to Izzy & Lloyd since this will be their last time touring with SOI. Then it was time for the show to start ...

"Sunrise ~ Grand Canyon Suite" Cast
Before any skaters appeared on the ice, there was this little music introduction, which I felt was too long personally. I mean at this point I was like "bring on the skaters..." Once the introduction piece was over, it started off with Jennifer Robinson at center ice, and was later joined by Elena & Kyoko and then the rest of the SOI cast to follow. The music chosen for the introduction wasn't a favorite of mine. I suppose I like something more "upbeat" for an opening number, like we saw last year, which gets the crowd all pumped. But I will defiantly say that the choreography was done extremely well threw out the number. One major disappointment I must mention was that Kurt wasn't in the opening number as well as Shae-Lynn Bourne. After all the skaters were introduced that were in the opening number, Kurt Browning did appear, and was introduced, which followed his skate to "Ding Dong Daddy"

"Ding Dong Daddy" ~ Cherry Poppin Daddies Kurt Browning
You could just hear the crowd's response once that music started. Had everyone clapping, and just all pumped, and probably excited to see Kurt. I saw this program live once before (at Kurt Browning's Gotta Skate) And I loved this number from the first time I saw it. And tonight was no exception. He just looks really darn good in that muscle shirt.

"Timing Is Everything" David Pelletier
Poor Poor Kurt. To tie in with the whole "Time" theme, the title of this little piece says it all ~ "Timing Is Everything". I don't want to give it away, incase anyone reading this hasn't seen the show yet. But very cute piece indeed.

"Look At Little Sister" ~ Stevie Ray Vaughn & Double Trouble Kyoko Ina & John Zimmerman
Great to see these two back with the CSOI tour this year again. Being Canadian I am a huge fan of I&Z. I am disappointed that they only had 1 solo number in this years show. The program they did skate was fabulous, lots of energy, and great character throughout the performance.

"I Put A Spell On You / Boomerang Baby" ~ Bet & Stef Jennifer Robinson
Probably one of my favorite exhibition performances from Jennifer Robinson to date. The program started off with Jennifer's voice, talking , following the music for her program.

"Come Away With Me" ~ Norah Jones Jamie Sale & David Pelletier
All I can say after watching this program was "awwww" I was looking so much forward to seeing this program "live" and it is such a great piece for both Jamie & David. Its almost like you can feel what their feeling on the ice when watching them skate together.

"Hands Of Time" Shae-Lynn Bourne, Kyoko Ina & Jennifer Robinson
One of the things I had read in past reviews before seeing the show was all about "the props" I don't mind "props" during a show. And with the whole "Time" theme this number really made a lot of sense. I was excited to finally see Shae-Lynn as well. Since Shae-Lynn wasn't formally introduced in the Opening Number, I had the lady next to me ask me who the blond was. I of course told her it was Shae- Lynn. Enjoyed the music during this piece. Actually reminded me of the song B&K skated too way back in the day (1994 I believe) Costumes were cute and wearing the shades were an extra touch to the program.

"Flamenco" ~ Steve Stevens Todd Eldredge

I always love watching Todd skate. I always say it so hard to take pictures of Todd during his performances sometimes, because he is all over the ice. He is defiantly one skaters I know that uses the whole entire ice service "well" What a great piece of music, very "Todd" as well. Enjoyed the program throughout. I'm not sure its one of my favorite programs from Todd, but well choreographed. He was defiantly "on" in Hamilton with his power jumps as I call them. Such great height.

"Skater Boi" ~ Avril Lavigne Isabelle Brasseur & Lloyd Eisler
What such a GREAT song for them to skate to. So "B&E style let me tell you. Loved this program from beginning to end. With their endless tricks throughout the program. I've got to laugh at Lloyd's costume. He really did look like a skater boi, even with this little "goatee" died green. Can't believe I even noticed that "little" detail. These two are really going to be missed next year. Of course STANDING OVATION for Izzy & Lloyd. And defiantly had the crowd oooing and awwing throughout their performance.

"Let Me Fall" ~ Josh Groban Elena Berezhnaya & Anton Sikharulidze
Well it doesn't help that I absolutely love this song, that during their entire performance, they really drew me into their performance. I really love B&S, and this program if probably one of my second favorite programs aside from their "Charlie Chaplin" exhibition number..

"Jailbird" Todd Eldredge, Kyoko Ina & John Zimmerman
Cute little skit, what I like most about this number was John & Todd with their little "dance" number. These little "skits" in-between the actual performances really made the show flow more. And I think it was a great idea personally.

"Memorial" ~ Michael Nyman Alexei Yagudin
Very "typical" Yagudin style program and quite enjoyed it. Wasn't really fond of the costume mind you, but the music was very "haunting" and was skated with great emotion I found.

I thought this group number was a lot of fun and enjoyed it from beginning to end. It really says a lot that in life, one has to have "time" for some fun. So much was going on at one point of the program I didn't really know where to watch. Was also nice to see Kurt finally - again with the "guys" Costumes were great too - very colorful.


"Work N' Time" ~ Art Of Noise Todd Eldredge, David Pelletier, Alexei Yagudin, John Zimmerman
What a clever program. OK OK I know I am sure a lot of people are saying yet again another "props" number. But seriously, this was such a clever number that I really quite enjoyed it. I mean seeing Todd, David , Alexei & John all in one number isn't so bad either. I think the tricks they did with the broom were cute and I wasn't rolling my eyes one bit in thinking "yet another props number"

"Are You Gonna Be My Girl" ~ Jet Steven Cousins
YEH finally get to see Steven skate. We are so lucky here in Canada that he is able to join the cast of CSOI tour. I know there are so many people in the US who wish Steven was touring. Loved this number, typical "Steven" number, who he had all the ladies in the audience screaming of course.

"Caruso" ~ Lara Fabian Shae-Lynn Bourne
"Introducing Canadian Champion, World Champion ~ Shae-Lynn Bourne" She definitely received a wonderful response and I was so excited and anxious to see Shae-Lynn skate "solo" Of course everyone has said its odd seeing her skate alone, but you know what, she holds her own on the ice , and she definitely doesn't need a partner to let her "shine" What a passionate, emotional performance skated to "Caruso" She was in a beautiful "red" dress. Throughout her skate, she definitely showed basic "skating" as well as what her and Victor were known for, their "hydroblading" Deep long edges. She received a HUGE standing ovatation and well deserved as well. She looks so happy and I'm so happy that she still wants to skate. Solo or not she is definitely in a class all by herself.

"Out Of Time" Kurt Browning
This little piece had me laughing. Kurt at center ice, awaiting to skate, when the announcer mentioned that they are currently out of time and will announce him when its "time" for his skate. Sooooo funny !

"Timely Advice" (Sun screen) ~ Baz Luhrmann Jamie Sale, Steven Cousins, David Pelletier, John Zimmerman
Again yet another number with the whole "time" theme incorporated in the number. It was a good number, maybe not my favorite group number of the night.

Kalinka ~ Traditional Elena Berezhnaya & Anton Sikharulidze
"Kalinka" is probably one of my favorite "traditional" Russia song that I so enjoy. And its definitely a great song for both Elena & Anton to skate too. Had the audience clapping throughout their performance. It was this performance I noticed that Anton cut his hair. Looks good short. The costumes definitely matched this program. One complaint - it was too short :(

"When You Come Back To Me Again" ~ Garth Brooks Todd Eldredge
Saw this number at Kurt's Gotta Skate, and in all honesty at that time it wasn't a favorite of mine. But having seen it again tonight, I've got to say that I extremely enjoyed it and probably one of my favorite programs to add to my list of Todd Favorites. I've also got to mention that Todd looks great in purple.

"Remember Me This Way" ~ Ashley Alexander Isabelle Brasseur & Lloyd Eisler
After Todd's skate, there was a "HUGE" picture at center ice of Izzy & Lloyd from back in the days when they were in competitive skating.*sniff sniff* Almost had me crying. Then spotlight on Izzy & Lloyd as they began to skate to "Remember Me This Way" The words of the song says a lot about these two. And we will definitely remember all their great moments in their skating career. Skated to a standing ovation of course and will certainly be missed. Best Of Luck Izzy & Lloyd.

"Rock Lesson" Cast
This little segment was cute, and was a little taste to what was next in the program

~ ALEXEI YAGUDIN "Ain't That A Shame" By Cheap Trick
LOVED this program from Yagudin. Had the crowd screaming throughout his performance.

"Ballroom" ~ Strickly Ballroom Jamie Sale & David Pelletier
This program was Hilarious, Funny, Cute, Clever. I'd give it definitely a 6.0 ! Loved this program from beginning to end. Jamie & David are so adorable already, and seeing comedy from them is so refreshing. Had me laughing threw out the program.

"Time In A Bottle" ~ Jum Croce Kurt Browning
Kurt's new program to "Time In A Bottle" was great. Kurt wasn't really "on" with his jumps tonight, but the whole skate was great. I managed to take some really nice pictures of him during this performance, for he was doing alot near where I was sitting.

"Time" ~ Mike Verta/Stuart Kusher Cast
Again the music wasn't a favorite of mine, I still prefer something more "upbeat" like last year, but the choreography was done extremely well. I applaud Chris Dean for all his hard work, and at least was nice to see Kurt & Shae-Lynn in the finale. Everyone wearing "white" which reminded me of SOI in 1999 during the "closing" number that year.


After the show was over, Steven Cousins came out and told us that there were going to be a few retakes, since the show was being taped for TV. Steven was in good spirits, and had us laughing. Kurt Browning was the first one to come out. He had to do a retakes for "Time In A Bottle" It took Kurt a little long to complete the on "jump" that he wanted to do. He kept talking to either the audience or possibly camera man, in regards to the music. We weren't exactly sure what he was saying, since he didn't have a mic or anything so I am not sure exactly what the problem was. Perhaps maybe the music wasn't cued in the write place ?? I do recall saying maybe he could do it without the music. After a few tries he finally did it and he was finished. David & Jamie were next to do their retake for "Ballroom" and of course they were awaiting the music, and people were screaming and yelling at of course David. He just kept smiling. It was really cute. They did the retake that they needed to do which was fun to watch again. After David & Jamie, there were two more retakes. Kurt had to say his closing for the TV, and they had to do a small retake for "Timely Advice (Sunscreen)" Once that was over, then well it was all over. Steven came out, thanked everyone for coming, and said goodnight !!

Conclusion: Well my overall thoughts on the show are that it was defiantly different than last years show. But I certainly enjoyed the show throughout. The theme of the show was "Time" and they defiantly did stick with that whole theme throughout the show.

There was a lot of "props" used for this show as compared to other shows in the past, and as a fan I didn't mind them so much. It must be really hard for them to sit down year after year and actually come up with something "new" And I think they did a great job with the "Time" theme this year. Very curious now what they will think of next. Only complaint I have with this years CSOI show, is that I wish that we could have seen more of Kurt Browning as well as Shae-Lynn Bourne.

Little side note: after the show, we went to the local restaurant for a drink or two, and ended up seeing some skaters. Kurt Browning, Steven Cousins, Lloyd Eisler and his wife and family & friends, as well as a few other skaters ( Lenny Faustino) who went to the show. They were all in good spirits, and were just relaxing.