Last summer, Sotnikova was a cast member of Mao Asada's Japanese tour "The Ice." (Don't recall how many stops/shows The Ice had, but I think it was shorter in duration than SOI or CSOI.)
In at least one ShibSibs video, Sotnikova looked as if she were enjoying the backstage fun and camaraderie right along with her castmates from Japan, the U.S., and Canada. If I am not mistaken, Kovtun also was in the cast.
The tours offer opportunities that perhaps compensate to some extent for the time away from normal training: to earn money ... to improve performance skills, to be exposed to choreographers other than one's own, to build one's fan base, etc., etc.
As an aside, I doubt that the casts for Japan and Canada will be identical. And every year, the casts for Canada vs. the U.S. are different, AFAIK.
I wonder who will run the US AND/OR Canadian tours this year. Would Browning be the director for the Canadian part? How about choreography? It is quite intriguing.
I spoke to Sinead Kerr @ US Nationals last month, expressing the hope that she & her brother John would be back in SOI this season. She said she would love to be in the tour, but had the impression that this season's US tour will focus on the US Olympians/World Team skaters. So far the confirmed cast for the US tour : Meryl & Charlie, Gracie, Ashley, Jeremy (according to the SOI website). I do wish the US & Canadian tours didn't overlap - we enjoy seeing our favorite Canadian (and other international) skaters as well. Perhaps next season (assuming there is a season), the tour will return to the mix of US & international skaters.
In their welcome-home interview, Castelli & Shnapir said they are not sure yet whether they will be touring with SO I. (They hope they will be.)
The confirmed tour members seem to be IMG skaters, does IMG run the tour? I'm hoping Jason and the other Olympic team members performs at a few dates at least ( and can benefit from it financially). The tour isn't long and would be a great chance to earn some training funds while giving the skaters a chance to have some fun and practice performing.
Who else do you think will be on the tour?
I'm guessing the U.S. team members who medalled in the team event. This is tough on C&B, the Shibs, Polina, Z&B.
No live show for me so soon, sadly. If I wanted to watch Ilia+Katia duet, I have a sudden feeling that this year might be the last they'll consider. Just a feeling. I liked their duet most, no offence to real partnering pairs or dancers... Just a sentimental thing. (They're so picture perfect with dramas)
Jason needs an agent. Would it be a conflict for them to represent him and Jeremy? Just a thought. With one tour and once agency running it the other skaters are definitely at a disadvantage.
My two cents re IMG:
It represents both Wagner and Gold, for example, so I don't see any theoretical conflict for it to represent both Jeremy and Jason -- IF Jason and IMG were to decide that they want to join forces.
Meanwhile, non-IMG skaters have been known to perform with SOI. Lysacek is an example.
My hunch is that IMG already has been talking to Jason -- about the possibility of representation in general as well as the possibility of SOI. But I would not consider anything a fait accompli. For all I know, Team Brown might have good reasons of its own not to sign with IMG.
Or Jason may want to use the summer to improve his quad. It's going in his program next year.
Depends on the agency. I was reading "The Second Mark" and one of the revelations for the Russians was that to get into ice shows IIRC was to get an agent. Moskvina learned to hustle quickly to get Elena & Anton some contracts and help work on their branding. I think it would depend on which stars get the best agencies to cast them. Plus, methinks it may be more attractive to them to skate in SOI rather than All That Skate, which Yuna OWNS, although V/T have been skating for Yuna's shows for the last two years. I imagine that Adelina would not be well-received in Korea, even if she had nothing to do with the final result.
Here's a fun question: how many of the competing skaters in Sochi are Yuna's employees in ATS? :P