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Historic theatre turns to ice
Historic theatre turns to ice

His Majesty's Theatre has put on a frosty reception for the first ice show to be performed in the historic venue.

But the audience reaction was expected to be much warmer last night when the Imperial Ice Stars - 26 of the world's finest skaters - opened their Perth season of The Nutcracker on Ice on a stage frozen solid with the help of 15km of refrigerated piping and 2500 litres of antifreeze.

The company's previous ice ballets Sleeping Beauty, Swan Lake and Cinderella have been at the Burswood Theatre.

But the show marks the first time the troupe of Russian stars has performed high-speed dancing and acrobatics in the more intimate surrounds of His Majesty's Theatre.

Production manager Paul Mansfield said 35 technicians worked round the clock from Wednesday morning to install the 16m by 16m ice rink, which had been given a head start in the freezing process by using four tonnes of crushed ice.

Theatregoers would be wise to dress for slightly cooler conditions. "It may be a touch colder," Mr Mansfield said.

Imperial Ice Stars director Tony Mercer said ice dancing had the grace and beauty of traditional dance with the added thrill and danger of skaters slicing ice at 35km/h.

The Nutcracker on Ice, set to Tchaikovsky's memorable score, is the story of how a child's love brings to life a nutcracker given to her for Christmas by her godfather.

The show runs until Sunday, August 12.