BSC ice show a hit

Catchy tunes, combined with superb skills and fantastically-choreographed routines, made this year’s Border Skating Club ice show “High School Musical” a big hit over the weekend.
Of course, the appearance of 2007 Canadian silver medallist Chris Mabee may have been a selling point, too.
“It was a really great show, but having Chris there made it awesome,” enthused Nicole Katona-Campbell, one of the club’s coaches.
This show was the first in several years that was considered a mini-production, as opposed to just a theme.
“High School Musical” is a made-for-television musical film, which was distributed by the Disney Channel in 2006.
It follows the story of two high school students—Troy, captain of the basketball team, and Gabriella, the shy new girl who enjoys math and science.
The pair try out for the lead parts in their high school musical. And although some of the other students try to stop them, they pursue their dreams.
“We wanted to try something different,” Katona-Campbell noted. “Actually, the kids came to us and asked if it would be possible to do.”
Since it’s a musical, there was a lot of dancing, which the club tried to incorporate into the routines. And the skaters seemed to enjoy that aspect.
“We copied a portion of the dance directly from the movie,” Katona-Campbell remarked, adding they tried to follow the storyline as closely as possible.
She noted it was a challenge, though, because they didn’t use any dialogue in the performance—just the music.
“We went with the most prominent scenes,” Katona-Campbell explained.
“High School Music” begins at a New Year’s Eve bash, so the senior skaters dressed as party-goers for the opening number. They even had balloons fall from the ceiling when the clock struck midnight.
The CanSkate ‘A’ group portrayed the school’s mascot—the Wildcats—while some of the boys headed out on the “court” with their basketballs.
The junior skaters showed off their “musical tryout” routine, the CanSkate ‘C’ group dressed as skater girls, and the CanSkate ‘B’ skaters represented the smart kids.
The senior skaters also performed in the cafeteria scene “Stick to the Status Quo” and the finale “We’re All in this Together.”
Seniors Ashlee Nordstrom, Alex Buttner, Danielle Gustafson, Jillian Bobczynski, Samantha Loveday, Paige Chambers, Sophie Potvin-Begin, and Michael Nelson also were featured in solo, duet, or pairs numbers.
Meanwhile guest skaters, the International Falls synchro team, demonstrated their moves while Mabee wowed the crowd with his triple jumps and sleek spins during two routines.
“It went really smoothly. I couldn’t have asked for more,” Katona-Campbell enthused, noting they had to add a few songs to their rendition in order to incorporate all the skaters.
“And the kids loved it so much,” she added.
Katona-Campbell also said the club was pleased with the turnout, performing to large audiences on both Saturday night and Sunday afternoon.
“There was a standing ovation both times,” she said. “It was for Chris—he made the show great for the kids.”
The club has never brought in a guest skater of the calibre of Mabee before and she noted they’d like to be able to do it again.
“He said he really enjoyed it, too,” she remarked. “In fact, he said he felt like he had more fans here than in his hometown.”
The local skaters, as well as parents, were eager for autographs and pictures of the well-known athlete—and Mabee was more than willing. He even offered a seminar during the day Saturday to club members.
“I just want to say a big thank you to Chris for showing us his talents and what skating can be like,” Katona-Campbell added. “The show was a success.”
Ice show convener Leana Moffitt agreed the performances went well.
“It took a lot of time and planning,” she conceded. “[But] the kids did really well and Chris did a wonderful job.
“A lot of people have said they really enjoyed it . . . and the kids had a great experience with Chris,” Moffitt added.
The Border Skating Club’s annual banquet will be held Apr. 17 at 7 p.m. at the Fort Frances Curling Club where trophies and awards will be given out to deserving skaters.