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Article updated: 10/28/2013 5:48 PM

American Ice Theatre finds home In Chicago

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October 18, 2013; Chicago, Illinois­­­: Bringing fresh new art of dance to ice, American Ice Theatre is relocating its home base to Chicago to kick off the 2013­-14 season. The company will conduct performances throughout the winter months and culminate with its spring gala "Let's Dance!" at the McFetridge Sports Center on May 31, 2014.

American Ice Theatre (AIT) is a non­profit "dance on ice" company comprised of accomplished figure skaters performing with a mission to infuse the art of dance to the ice by presenting contemporary and sophisticated work. The company, previously based in the San Francisco Bay Area for the past 10 years, has also opened a chapter in Salt Lake City, Utah.

AIT Founder Jodi Porter, whose history includes leading performances at the 2002 Olympics, SJ Sharks game intermissions, and opening SF Union Square Ice Rink, has established the company's residency at McFetridge Sports Center where they will conduct weekly rehearsals. She believes the company's new home offers many promising opportunities.

"Chicago is an amazing city full of arts, dance and theatre. From performances in parades, theatre venues, outdoor venues and our home at McFetridge, AIT is excited about the possibilities," she said.

Those possibilities including an outdoor season of performances at Chicago rinks such as the McCormick Tribune Plaza Ice Rink at Millennium Park and the Rosemont Ice Rink.

AIT is also proud to announce its partnership with Young Artists Showcase (YAS) for the spring gala "Let's Dance!" From classical to contemporary, the show will feature a variety of dance styles and will present new works created by AIT certified choreographers and contestants from the past four seasons of YAS.

"The Young Artists Showcase concept is very revolutionary in the skating world, as it features a global online contest, where choreographers have the opportunity to have their work viewed and reviewed by experts, along with the general skating public," Olympic skating coach Audrey Weisiger said, who founded YAS in 2010. "I am grateful to Jodi and AIT for their enthusiastic support."

AIT will hold open call casting auditions for the company ensemble October 23 and 30 at McFetridge Sports Center from 11 a.m. ­ 12:30 p.m. www.americanicetheatre.org

Tickets for "Let's Dance!" will go on sale in March and the official line­up including star performers will be announced in the winter.

"AIT was built from my personal education and professional experience in dance fused with professional figure skating," Porter said. "My goal for AIT is to be accessible enough to the general public that people on the streets of America will know and appreciate what ice theatre is as they do for ballet. It is a model that can extend the life of a skater and allow for more career opportunities."

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