COLUMBUS, Ga. (WRBL) — It may look like magic on the ice, but that effortless look only comes from years of daily practice. Many of the skaters in Disney On Ice’s show “Mickey’s Search Party” have been with the show for more than half a decade and began skating as children.
Adriene and William Ott portray Princess Ariel and Prince Eric in the show but have been skating together for nearly 15 years. Before that, Adriene was a figure skater and William was a hockey player.
“When I met Adriene in 2010, we started skating together and she taught me to figure skate and it kind of just went from there,” said William, who joined Disney On Ice alongside Adriene in 2014.
For their act, the two must execute a series of lifts requiring strength and flexibility for both skaters. The Otts regularly practice the acrobatic stunts, including one called a “ballet lift,” ahead of each show. Their other favorite tricks include a “drape” and a “platter,” both of which demand Adriene be hoisted nearly eight feet in the air over William’s head.
Performer Jasmine Bezugly, who plays Jessie from Toy Story in the show, explained she started skating early, almost like a rite of passage in her home country of Canada.
With a total of 22 years on the ice under her belt, Bezugly is in the midst of her sixth year performing as the toy cowgirl and eight years into working with Disney On Ice.
Even though skating with Disney On Ice often takes her far from home, Bezugly loves to bring the magic of Disney to local children and their families. She called working on the show a “really, really special experience.”
Bezugly said, “I truly love what I do. I love … being able to see people and their faces light up when I enter and screaming my character’s name.”
As the show opened on Thursday, Nov. 10, skaters were met by an enthusiastic audience which applauded and sang throughout the performance. The performers hope the same excitement will continue for the rest of their Columbus showings, which will conclude with a final show at 1 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 12.
“We’re so excited to be here in Columbus,” said Bezugly.
She continued on, praising the Columbus crowd for singing along to every song and cheering as performers created magic on the ice, aided by various meticulously created storytelling props from umbrellas decked out to resemble jellyfish to a touch-activated smoking genie lamp.
“It never really gets old,” said Ariene about performing with Disney On Ice as Ariel, her childhood favorite princess. She added it’s “amazing” to see so many children sing along and dress as their favorite characters for each performance.
Showings of Mickey’s Search Party will resume on Nov. 10 at 7 p.m. at the Columbus Civic Center. There will also be four other showings between Nov. 11 and 12, with tickets starting at $20 each. For more details, visit the Columbus Civic Center website.