Charter Arts skaters practice for the big show
About 20 graceful ice skaters from The Lehigh Valley Charter HS for the Arts participated in the annual winter ice show for the community at Steel Ice Center Dec. 16. The Press was present for practice the day before.
Thom Mullins, the high school’s Artistic Director of Figure Skating, coached the skaters through their routines on one of the two ice rinks at the Steel Ice Center. Mullins was appropriately bundled up in the cold arena; the skaters, on the other hand, wore costumes that suggested warmer temperature as many had bare arms and heads, wore tights and big smiles.
The two-act program had a distinctly multicultural theme as reflected by the titles of some of the numbers: “The Christmas Waltz” (Christian), “The Chanukah Song” (Jewish), “Heri Za Kwanzza” (American-African and Pan-African), “Muhammad” (Islam) and the “Loy Loy Krathong Song” (Thai Buddhist).
According to Mullins, the show “celebrates winter as celebrated the world over.” He said “Students researched and choreographed authentic movements from those traditions to incorporate into their skating.”
Each piece in the show, Mullins said, centered around a different gift; gifts of love, peace, family, to nature – all demonstrating that, while our traditions may differ, we all seek the same gifts in our lives.
The show culminates with the gift of compassion, according to Mullins. The skaters show how a simple gift of a warm coat can change the life of a person. In connection with the show, students are conducting a coat drive to take their art to reality.