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Thread: Cast of SOI - 2003-2004

  1. #16
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    Originally posted by Vash01
    Touring with SOI does not make a skater lose eligibility. He/she would have to compete in one of the pro competitions to lose it. That is why Yagudin does not lose his eligibility.
    Actually, I thought that only non-Americans were able to skate in SOI and stay eligible. I thought that Americans gave up their eligibility if they joined.

    I don't see Yuka as any kind of headliner. I would bet the majority of average fans who go to SOI will have no idea who she is. However, there is no other ladies skater they can possibly get. Oksana has the name, but right now she does not have the skills. Nicole Bobek has a COI contract and lacks the skills. I never thought of Lucinda Ruh as a good addition, but why is she no longer in the cast? Boy, no wonder Scott Hamilton is so upset with the lack of skaters going pro. His tour may just go down the drain because of it. (No, I am not an advocate for making a skater go pro. They should stay eligible as long as they want.)

  2. #17
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    There's a little bit of fine print saying "Cast subject to change" on the bottom of that ad, so maybe not all the SOI cast members have been officially confirmed yet; that does look like a smaller-than-usual cast! I also wonder what, if anything, will come out of the "Oksana joining SOI" rumors from this summer (there'd certainly be room for her!)

    I agree it's great to see Yuka back--IIRC, she wasn't invited back to SOI after the year she filled in for Katia because the powers that be didn't think she "fit in with their planned theme" (which, that year, happened to be that "wonderful" Gold Rap featuring Katarina, Kristi and Tara) I wondered why Yuka and Jason (who worked on the tour in some behind-the-scenes capacity that year) didn't skate a number together that year (when M&S were the only other pairs team on the tour), but with sooo many other great pairs teams in SOI now, they probably don't need another now! Which probably explains why there's no ice dance team in this year's SOI cast, either. :(

    Alexei could easily do a couple of GP Events around the SOI rehearsal schedule (which has been shortened this year anyway), but he'd probably need a week or so off to compete at Worlds and I don't think the SOI powers that be would give him that time off. Considering Alexei just had hip surgery a few months ago (not to mention his more recent troubles!), I don't think returning to eligible competition and doing SOI at the same time (at least not at the level he skated at before his hip injury) is a very realistic goal for him right now. I don't think it would be possible for any skater to do both right now, for that matter!

    Actually, aren't Kurt, Scott, Katia and Kristi all planning to make "special guest star appearances" in SOI this year (probably not all during the same show, unfortunately!) As much as it might take away from the group numbers that make SOI special, I'm afraid this is the route they might have to take if the tour hopes to stay afloat.

  3. #18
    Custom Title heyang's Avatar
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    I think I read something in the latest BOI where they said that special guest appearances would be used more heavily. Some of our most beloved skaters now have other priorities - family and children. Touring is tough. Kurt, Scott, Katia and Kristi have been skating for a long time and have started families. Can't blame them for wanting to stay in one spot (or fewer spots) for a while.

    I don't think the guest appearances will hurt the show. If anything, they help the box office that keep the tour running. It was a lovely surprise for me when Katerina Witt made a special guest appearance at MSG, NYC in 1996. I know Scott's appearance in some shows on the East Coast and Katia's on the West Coast gave SOI a boost.

    Yuka doesn't have the 'name' to draw the casual fan to spend $50+ on a ticket. She's a 1-time World Champion where the Oly' medalists didn't compete. Don't get me wrong - I really enjoy Yuka's skating, but it's the truth. Nancy and Oksana bowed out of World's after Oly's. Lulu couldn't compete due to a foot injury. Can't predict if she would've beaten Lulu in 95 or LuLu and MK in 96.

    I've also enjoyed Yuka and Jason's pairs skating. When she skated with SOI in the past, I think they had skated as a pair for less than a season. They continued to practice while on tour. If they can do the bigger pairs moves, I think they would be competitive as US eligibles because of their chemistry and strength. Again - no drawing power in this pair and they have plenty of pairs on contract already.

    Personally, I would like to see Brian Boitano as a guest. He said in an interview that he would be interested in appearing in SOI because of the creativity. If MK decides to go pro, maybe Brian could use his influence to have her sign with SOI!

    We all have a dream cast, but the tour's a business too. Marketing has to have the 'names' to draw the masses - unfortunately, there aren't enought ardent skating fans to fill all the seats. The big names draw in the casual fan who hopefully becomes a true fan.

    At last year's SOI, I had an on ice seat in Trenton NJ. The seat cost $95. Rena Roca sat on the wall behind me at the start of Studz. There were 2 little girls sitting next to me - they spent more time looking at the program than watching the show - unless Alexei happened to skate by. I think one of them was more into it since she was able to identify some of the other cast members, too.

    BTW, I think it's been mentioned in the past that the USFSA does not sanction SOI due to it's contractual obligations to COI. I think it was part of the conflict between Todd and the USFSA last year. Yags can skate with SOI because he skates for Russia. Also, most of SOI's schedule occurs during the eligible season and since SOI is constructed of several group numbers, it would be difficult for the show to plan on the absence of several eligible skaters at the same time.

  4. #19
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    Originally posted by Lucy25
    Actually, I thought that only non-Americans were able to skate in SOI and stay eligible. I thought that Americans gave up their eligibility if they joined.

    US skaters need to get approval from the USFSA to skate in Stars on Ice and remain eligible; this is not automatic. The irony of Eldredge's situation was that the USFSA gave him permission, but then dumped him.

  5. #20
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    Originally posted by Mathman
    SOI needs the likes of Sasha, Irina and Michelle.
    Erm, or the current reigning Olympic champion. (And BTW I think if SOI had ever offered Irina a good contract, she would have taken it. So I'd bet she's not been considered. Sarah and MK *have* been wooed much.)

    ... to land Kristi, who had already signed with Brian Boitano's tour, Scott had to buy out Brian's tour...
    I've never heard that re: Kristi. I'd heard that while BB was taking some time off, SOI just scooped up some of his key people and concepts from under him. BB was bitter for quite awhile, but he's said recently that if he returned to touring he'd be more interested in a theme show like SOI.

    Anyhoo, to get the current ladies OOOOO gold medalist, perhaps Scott could buy Yale and make SOI 101 a requirement for her.

    I think SOI and COI are both facing crises - rising costs coupled with a crap economy, lack of stars, lack of focus to the shows.

    Although I haven't been a fan of some of the choreo SOI's done in recent years, at least they've tried to come up with new ideas, like featuring the pairs. Whereas Collins' biggest innovation was adding the vaudeville-like acrobats and hoola hoop girl. :P

    But a big-name female skater, preferably of recent eligible vintage, *plus* a full-time Kurt, is what SOI most needs right now. Without KB, they're in a worse situation than last year IMHO. (Plus they should have Roca & Sur or another great dance team for the discriminating fan.)

    Many problems with the guest-star concept - including that I'm jealous of the towns that get the guest-star like Katia.

  6. #21
    Buttle "Catch The Victory" ~ Torino 2006
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    SOI Cast is always changing. And nothing is etched in stone until SOI does an Official Release of cast members, which would be posted on their Official Site.

    My opinion about "fresh new skaters" joining SOI, alot of skaters currently in the amature field who have been there for a long time probably find there is more money involed there right now than becoming a proffesional skaters and touring. I ask myself all the time as to why Elvis is back. I mean don't get me wrong, I love Elvis, and a huge fan, but either Skate Canada was really desperate or he wanted to come back for the money because there wasn't alot of opportunites for him as a professional skater.

    I look forward to SOI each and ever year. And living in Canada I have to wait to see SOI really late in the year. And even then the cast is always changing.

  7. #22
    Keeper of Michelle's Nose berthes ghost's Avatar
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    "I mean don't get me wrong, I love Elvis, and a huge fan, but either Skate Canada was really desperate or he wanted to come back for the money because there wasn't alot of opportunites for him as a professional skater."

    What money?

    As far as I know, prize money only goes to the podium. With the way things have been the last few years, I don't think that he can count on too many of those.

    I believe that some events offer appearance fees, but how many will really woo Elvis at this point in his career? SC yes, but would SA or COR really pay for him when they could spend the money on Tim or Plushy?

    I always thought that skaters made most of their money with endorsement fees. Well, he's as famous as he's gonna get and he can get endorsement money if pro or not.

    Once you add up the trainer fees, ice fees, travel fees, etc...will he really be pulling in that much cash?

    I think that it was just a lifestyle change. Elvis has always struck me a someone who did things his way, no matter what. In fact, IIRC, Orser and Browning all but came out and called him foolishly stubborn.

  8. #23
    Salchows and Shimmies!!!
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    One issue has not been addressed: Can it be assumed that Tara Lipinski's contract has not been renewed in any manner? I have assumed this because of her hip injury, but nothing seems to have been actually stated.

  9. #24
    Buttle "Catch The Victory" ~ Torino 2006
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    Originally posted by berthes ghost
    What money?
    As far as I know, prize money only goes to the podium. With the way things have been the last few years, I don't think that he can count on too many of those.
    Opps I didn't relize that my post never did get posted. So I will edit and report.

    berthes ghost I have to say that you do make alot of great points, and well maybe its not the money. When I first read this thread about SOI, and talk about other skaters out there who COULD join the tour, Elvis just came to mind. I think Elvis only toured with SOI once throughout his career, and he was just a "special guest" skater at the time. Oh and that was on during the Canadian leg of the tour, I believe the year was 1993 !
    Last edited by Blade1; 09-04-2003 at 08:50 PM.

  10. #25
    Custom Title Jhar55's Avatar
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    With the ticket price at $83 for the good seats there is no way I'd shell out that much for the cast they have. The only one I'd care to see is Todd. And it's not like they are coming to the Nashville area again this year, SOI has been here in two years. Sorry but for me SOI just doesn't have it anymore.:o

  11. #26
    Buttle "Catch The Victory" ~ Torino 2006
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    Originally posted by Jhar55
    With the ticket price at $83 for the good seats there is no way I'd shell out that much for the cast they have. The only one I'd care to see is Todd. And it's not like they are coming to the Nashville area again this year, SOI has been here in two years. Sorry but for me SOI just doesn't have it anymore.:o
    Yowzers !! Well I'd pay $83 to see SOI than COI. And from what I hear COI is pretty costly as well. The last COI show I saw, I was disapointed. Disapointed in the show and just thought it wasn't worth the amount I paided to see the show. At least when I go to SOI I get a variety with the group numbers as well as solo numbers.

  12. #27
    "LP" amykaren's Avatar
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    Is Tara out because of her hip? I am suprised she is not back again this year.

    The last two years the ticket prices got so expensive that I had to decide between SOI and COI, and I chose SOI because they have fresher talent. I did feel however that last year they were lacking single ladies skaters and the show suffered from it. I am so glad that they chose to take Yuka back!

    Alos, I am concerned for Alexei-with him competing and doing SOI. (Esp. since he had a DUI-is he really handling it all?). How much pressure can one person take? I hope we see him take some time for himself, and his training. Last year at the SOI show watching Alexei skate made me uncomfortable. He looked very unhappy.

    Yup, I will still go this year. I love Todd Eldredge, and Meno & Sand always have great numbers. Are Ina & Zimmerman back again?

  13. #28
    Buttle "Catch The Victory" ~ Torino 2006
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    Originally posted by amykaren
    Are Ina & Zimmerman back again?
    From what I've read, I&Z will be touring again with SOI !

  14. #29
    "LP" amykaren's Avatar
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    Thanks, Blade1. I was really impressed with them last year. I even bought a picture of them and hung it in my bedroom. They are technically brillant and have such unique style. I really love some of the original moves that they do.

  15. #30
    Buttle "Catch The Victory" ~ Torino 2006
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    Originally posted by amykaren
    Thanks, Blade1. I was really impressed with them last year. I even bought a picture of them and hung it in my bedroom. They are technically brillant and have such unique style. I really love some of the original moves that they do.
    Your very welcome amykaren. I too purchased the autograph photo of I&Z at SOI from their Bed Of Roses number. I truly love this team, and was so thrilled they took park in the Canadian leg of the tour. I am hoping they will join the Canadian leg again this year. But as for the US Tour they are ago from what I've read.

    I've met both I&Z as well and they are so down to earth. And well that John Zimmerman is really easy on the eyes *heeehee*


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