By Gina Capellazzi, Team FSO website administrator
Photos by Robin Ritoss (Header photo from 2019 Stars on Ice tour)
The Stars on Ice tour will visit 24 cities in the U.S. beginning in Fort Myers, Florida on Thursday, April 14. The tour will conclude in Portland, Oregon on Sunday, May 29.
Headlining this year’s tour is Nathan Chen, who in February won gold at the 2022 Olympic Winter Games in Beijing, China. The 22-year-old from Salt Lake City is also a three-time world champion and six-time U.S. Champion. This is Chen’s third full Stars on Ice tour.
Along with Chen, fans will also get to see 2022 Olympic bronze medalist ice dancers Madison Hubbell and Zachary Donohue. Just a few weeks ago, Hubbell and Donohue finished their final competitive season with a silver medal at the World Championships, their fourth world medal. Hubbell and Donohue have been a part of the Stars on Ice tour since 2017.
In addition to their medals in the individual men and dance events, Chen and Hubbell and Donohue, earned a silver medal with Team USA in the team event. All of the members of that team are a part of the Stars on Ice tour.
Hubbell and Donohue’s training mates, three-time U.S. Champion ice dancers Madison Chock and Evan Bates, who won the bronze medal at the 2022 World Championships, will be appearing in their third tour together. At the 2022 Olympics, Chock and Bates competed their alien/astronaut-themed free dance in the team event to help Team USA win the silver medal. They finished just off the podium in fourth place in the dance event. The 2022 Olympics was Chock and Bates’ third Olympics as a team, and the fourth Olympics for Evan, which is the most for a U.S. figure skater in any discipline.
For the first time since 2014, when two-time U.S. Champions and 2014 Olympic team bronze medalists Marissa Castelli and Simon Shnapir skated as special guests on the tour, a pairs team will be a part of this year’s Stars on Ice tour. Alexa Knierim and Brandon Frazier, who won Team USA’s first world title in pairs since 1979, will make their Stars on Ice debut. Knierim and Frazier won the silver medal with Team USA in the team event and finished in sixth place in the pairs event at the 2022 Olympics.
Also reaching the podium at the 2022 World Championships was Vincent Zhou, who took home the bronze at the event last month. The two-time World bronze medalist is appearing in what will be his first full Stars on Ice tour. Zhou participated in the 2019 tour, but injured his knee in a fall backstage at one of the shows. He wasn’t able to perform the rest of the tour. At the 2022 Olympics, Zhou performed his “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon” free skate in the team event to win the silver medal with Team USA. Unfortunately, Zhou was unable to compete in the men’s individual event due to testing positive for COVID-19 following the team event.
Also winning the silver medal in the Olympic team event was 2017 U.S. Champion Karen Chen. Chen finished in 16th place at the women’s individual event in Beijing. Last month, Chen finished in 8th place at the World Championships. This is Chen’s second full Stars on Ice tour.
In addition to the medalists at the 2022 Olympics, this year’s Stars on Ice tour will feature all of the 2022 Team USA Olympic figure skating team. Two-time U.S. Champion and newly crowned World bronze medalist Alysa Liu will be appearing in her first full Stars on Ice tour. She appeared as a guest star in 2019 after she won her first U.S. title. The 16-year-old, who finished in 7th place at the Olympics, announced April 9 on Instagram that she is retiring from figure skating.
Making her Stars on Ice debut is 2022 U.S. Champion Mariah Bell, who finished in 10th place at the 2022 Olympics. Last month, Bell finished just off the podium at the World Championships in fourth place.
2014 Olympic team bronze medalist Jason Brown, who finished in sixth place in the men’s event at his second Olympics this February, will be appearing in his second full tour with Stars On Ice.
Four-time U.S. bronze medalists Kaitlin Hawayek and Jean-Luc Baker will be joining their fellow Olympians for the tour as special guests skaters in seven cities. The 11th place finishers at the 2022 Olympics and 8th place finishers at the 2022 World Championships will join the tour in Glendale, Arizona on May 20 and perform in Anaheim and San Jose, Calif.; Boise, Idaho; Spokane and Seattle, Wash.; and Portland, Ore.
2022 Olympians Ashley Cain-Gribble and Timothy LeDuc, who finished in 7th place at the Olympics, will be special guests for the San Jose show on May 22.
Mirai Nagasu, who became the first female U.S. skater to land a triple Axel at the Olympics and only the third woman from any country to do so, will be participating in her fifth Stars on Ice tour. The 2018 Olympic team bronze medalist recently competed on the celebrity edition of the CBS reality show “Big Brother.”
Tickets for the 2022 Stars on Ice tour are available at www.starsonice.com.
Team Figure Skaters Online’s Gina Capellazzi and Claire Cloutier will be attending Stars on Ice in Hershey and Boston. Stay tuned for their coverage and interviews with members of the cast.