Meet CHANTAL FRY, Founder of Glisse on Ice and now Director/Producer and skating choreographer for the upcoming SHIVER SHOW (Feb 9 & 10) at the Glenn Gould Studio in downtown Toronto.The Toronto-born professional figure skater and performance artist previously competed in North American and European championships – after completing four golds under Skate Canada, Chantal entered the performance world with Innovations on Ice. She then toured with Holiday on Ice in Europe, the Lido de Paris, and the Cirque du Miroir in Montreal.In 2000, she combined her creative side with eight years of classical ballet, jazz and dramatic arts training to create Glisse on Ice. The skating troop toured France and later relocated to Canada where they enjoyed success on a plastic ice surface, performing with Cirque du Soleil and many of Canada’s most prestigious venues. Chantal now brings Glisse on Ice to the Shiver Show where the skaters will collaborate with performers from 7 styles of dance, as well as music, burlesque and circus artistry. A show definitely not to be missed!
I recently sat down with Chantal and asked her about her work with Shiver Show and Glisse on Ice……
You must be really excited to be a part of the Shiver Show, bringing your unique ice skating ballet to theatre audiences – what are you most looking forward to? We are so very excited to be apart of this unique and ambitious project with Kristina and Anton. I created Glisse on Ice to bring the art of skating to places you least expect and so this is an absolute perfect setting for our shows. We’re really enjoying the process of learning from and collaborating with dancers.Have you enjoyed collaborating with Kristina and Anton (pictured below), directing and choreographing your various segments? Their dance talent is exceptional, flawless even. Figure skaters have so much to learn from dancers; their discipline and execution of movement. It’s an honour to work with them and truly identify not just the differences in our performance styles but also to experience the process.You trained with outstanding coaches Debbie Wilkes and Tommy Litz when you were actively competing – how important is a good coach for inspiration and career aspirations? A good coach is one who truly understands the emotion behind the athlete. When they are able to channel the specific aspect of their students’ talent everyone gains form the result. Training with Tommy in Lake Placid every summer for six years taught me the importance of daily work and preparation. He recognized my passion for performance and the arts and put me in the Saturday night shows for tourists visiting the Olympic village. It was there that I realized there was a whole exciting show skating world. Debbie Wilkes, herself an Olympic champion, agreed with Tommy and in between her segments as a skating commentator for CTV, she produced a skating show. While I was still in high school she trusted me to go on tour across Canada performing as the lead skater in a Christmas show. I was hooked for life from that moment on. A good coach sees the hidden potential and provides the platform to reach your dreams and goals.Your Glisse on Ice shows have been presented around the world and in public and corporate venues. What, so far, has been the most exciting or challenging event you’ve performed? The Shiver Show is so new and ambitious that I would say it equals the time Glisse on Ice was invited by the Cirque du Soleil to present our unique concept at their annual Holiday party in Montreal. We collaborated with the artistic directors of Cirque and provided an unexpected evening for their staff who have seen and dreamt it all! It was such a huge honour my legs quivered for days! The elaborate white tulle and crystal dress I designed for that event has been the reason for countless bookings in the event industry. But there are so many to choose from. The Lido de Paris was probably my most gratifying show and touring with Holiday on Ice in Europe gave me such a great perspective that I stayed in France doing shows for 8 years then went on to create Glisse on Ice in Marseille.
[I frequently run into Chantal and the Glisse on Ice exhibitions at special events shows, like this one – below]
What do you hope the Shiver Show audiences experience with your beautiful “ice dancing” segments? We strive to capture the sheer essence of the feeling skating brings, yet completely out of context and far from a rink. We hope that audiences will be surprised and enchanted to see skaters twirling about on stage in the midst of beautiful dancers. The contrast between dancers and skaters is fascinating, very different yet linked. The Shiver Show embodies all these elements. And if someone wants to book Glisse on Ice, how do they contact you? Our weblink offers detailed background, lots of pictures and contact info: www.glisseonice.com and we’re also on Instagram @glisseonice so please follow us! Our shows are perfect for corporate galas, weddings and festivals as we set/strike the ice rapidly to ensure great flow at events. The Glisse skaters are all wonderfully talented and have competed at a national level; they have also toured the world with Disney on Ice, Holiday on Ice and various other professional tours. We have become the Glisse family, from the skaters to the all-female ice crew, costumes, sound, makeup…. and I am proud to be the appointed Glisse Maman!
You can come see Chantal and all the talented dance/skate artists in the SHIVER SHOW Friday evening Feb. 9th and Saturday Feb 10th. Details and tickets are available from: www.shivershow.ca
Seniors discounts (20%) and Students can purchase tickets for 50% off for the Saturday matinee show.