It’s onward and upward for Fuller Lake senior skaters, as they perform the opening number for the club’s spring concert Friday in their flight attendant and officer outfits. (Photo by Don Bodger)

It’s onward and upward for Fuller Lake senior skaters, as they perform the opening number for the club’s spring concert Friday in their flight attendant and officer outfits. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Spring skating concert a celebration with an edge

Ceremonial trashing of COVID part of a built-in theme as skaters and the audience rejoice

The Fuller Lake Skating Club knows how to put on a really big show.

The club’s spring concert Friday night at Fuller Lake Arena was not quite like the elaborate ice shows held every two years, but just about as close as you’re going to get.

“It just didn’t have spotlights and curtains and the lights,” explained club president Luisa Shillingford.

But it had everything else which is quite remarkable since no one was too sure not that long ago what would be permissible under Provincial Health Orders due to COVID.

Skaters were still decked out in wonderful costumes for the group routines and the soloists wore their competition dresses and outfits to make it seem every bit like a regular show.

There was also no actual theme to the concert, although it had its own built-in with a kind of coming-out party from COVID and a celebration of the return of large audiences to watch the skaters. It even came complete with a ceremonial trashing of masks during the senior and adult group routine.

Sophie Dawe, the most senior of the senior skaters, best summed up what it meant to the participants.

“It was definitely an emotional night for all of us, as this was something we’ve been waiting to do for a very long time,” she confided. “Having said that, a competition audience and a show audience are two very different things. Shows have very little stress, as you know that it’s for entertainment purposes and that no matter how it goes you’re not being judged on a scale.

“The girls I skate with and the coaches who have put up with all of us I wouldn’t give up for the world. Our parents supported us immensely with and without the pandemic. Our little club is a family and I’m so thankful that I get to be a part of it, and I think all the girls would say the exact same thing.”

The concert was put together by club coaches Dominic Turgeon and Lorraine Francisty along with team coaches Cassandra Taylor, Kailee Bowman and Adrian Matei and powerskating coach Cleve Shillingford.

The concert showcased the various elements of the club that not only includes figure skating, but powerskating and the CanSkate program for the little ones, with assistance from the senior skaters.

There’s also a coming together of ages, with Pam Ellis and Taylor still skating regularly alongside the youth.

“In particular, we’re really proud we make space for our adult skaters as well,” Laurelle Street, who did a masterful job as the announcer for the concert, told the crowd.

The feel-good concert permeated throughout the audience and most stayed for the entire two hours.

“What a great celebration as we all turned the corner on these last two years,” enthused Street.

Luisa Shillingford was in her usual place behind the scenes doing what she’s always done so diligently for more than 20 years now, including all but three as president.

“I never get to see it,” she confided. “I only saw the power and the Yellow (CanSkate) group.

“I saw some, I could hear the music. I’m always in the dungeon with the little guys which is fine.”

All going well and there’s no return to restrictions, the club will do a full-fledged show next year with that extra professional touch. The dilemma will be whether to have two shows the same day or just one with a larger audience.

The latter seemed to work well for the concert in this case, creating a wonderful atmosphere that everyone seemed to appreciate.

ConcertsFigure Skating

 

Senior skaters Lucy Street and Sophie Dawe help out the CanSkate group of Parker Gingerysty, Brewer Hankey and Ryker Macdougall with their Disney’s Main Street Electrical Parade routine during the Fuller Lake Skating Club’s spring concert Friday at Fuller Lake Arena. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Senior skaters Lucy Street and Sophie Dawe help out the CanSkate group of Parker Gingerysty, Brewer Hankey and Ryker Macdougall with their Disney’s Main Street Electrical Parade routine during the Fuller Lake Skating Club’s spring concert Friday at Fuller Lake Arena. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Smooth skating is shown by Mica Torres Hernandez in her senior solo routine. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Smooth skating is shown by Mica Torres Hernandez in her senior solo routine. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Powerskaters display their skills in a high-energy routine. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Powerskaters display their skills in a high-energy routine. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Senior skater Brooklyn Puska displays her skills in a solo routine. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Senior skater Brooklyn Puska displays her skills in a solo routine. (Photo by Don Bodger)

In The Navy routine is performed by the Fuller Lake Skating Club’s intermediate group. From left: Cosette Victores Armas, Heidi Simpson and Liahni Ellis-Donald. (Photo by Don Bodger)

In The Navy routine is performed by the Fuller Lake Skating Club’s intermediate group. From left: Cosette Victores Armas, Heidi Simpson and Liahni Ellis-Donald. (Photo by Don Bodger)

They’re leaving on a jet plane and there’s no telling where they’re going to wind up with Lucy Street in the driver’s seat. (Photo by Don Bodger)

They’re leaving on a jet plane and there’s no telling where they’re going to wind up with Lucy Street in the driver’s seat. (Photo by Don Bodger)