The Magic of Ice | Performing Arts Review | Chicago Reader

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The Magic of Ice

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The Magic of Ice, Drury Lane Theatre Evergreen Park. In this tirelessly perky revue, skaters glide and twirl to a medley of popular and patriotic tunes ("Let There Be Peace on Earth," "America, the Beautiful," "She Bangs"). Magic--mostly of the girl-sliced-up-in-box variety--is provided by Craig Dickens, a Rod Stewart-coiffed, eye-patch-wearing "Master Illusionist, direct from Las Vegas." Between acts, audience members are invited to make dinner reservations at the adjacent Martinique restaurant, renew their vows at the Martinique chapel, and participate in a game of bingo at intermission, with proceeds benefiting New York firefighters.

The production flows gracefully and the choreography is tight--necessarily so given the size of the "arena," which made me think of the Peanuts strip in which Snoopy and Woodstock try to stage a hockey game in a birdbath. Still, choreographer Cynthia Ramsey manages to crowd the ensemble into neatly synchronized group numbers complete with glittery regalia. The solo and duet performers--Russian champion Larissa Zamotina, French National Champion Marc Mandina, and the particularly daring International Adagio Champions Cheyne Coppage and Erin Covington--execute many beautiful, masterful moves despite the tiny surroundings. You can't help but imagine, however, how they might soar in the proper setting. Finally, although everyone has surely heard "Wind Beneath My Wings" too many times, the Ground Zero photo collage accompanying it here still brought tears, and the flag-waving finale brought the audience to its feet.

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