Boundless Edge Ice Dance Ensemble and Skating School and Michael Carson Productions present an ice skating show on the life of famed Mexican painter Frida Kahlo, titled "Viva La Vida". Produced and co-directed by: Michael Carson and Beth Woronoff. Choreography by: Beth Woronoff. Puppets and paintings by: Sara Peattie of The Puppeteers Cooperative and Theresa Linnihan.
Performed by Line Haddad, French and Israeli Ice Dance Olympic competitor and Ice Theatre of New York Ensemble Member; Alizah Allen, Senior Ladies US National competitor and Ice Theatre of New York Ensemble Member; Patrick Connelly, US Ice Dance National competitor; and Beth Woronoff, Director of the Boundless Edge Ice Dance Ensemble and former Ice Theatre of New York Ensemble Member. The cast of twelve is filled out by eight members of the Saugerties, NY-based Boundless Edge Ice Dance Ensemble.
Frida Kahlo’s life was forever changed the day a trolley bus accident put her in a full body cast for three months. It was then, as a bedridden teenage girl, that she began to paint. Left to pass the time alone, she used herself as a model.
Leaping off Kahlo’s oft-quoted words, “There have been two great accidents in my life. One was the trolley, and the other was Diego. Diego was by far the worst,” the program will depict both the vehicular accident as well as her husband, painter Diego Rivera.
The trolley and bus accident is depicted by five skaters in a bus puppet and two in a trolley puppet who crash into one another and spin apart. Later, Diego and Frida appear in front of Frida’s painting of them only to be interrupted by Frida’s sister, Cristina and revolutionary Leon Trotsky. The seductive scene plays out as Diego casually leaves Frida to dance with her sister. Despite the physical and emotional pain that Frida endured, the message of her life and this dance is “Live Life! Enjoy Life! Be yourself! Let nothing stop you! (Viva La Vida!)
Fifteen-foot tall skeleton puppets join the Day of the Dead Parade, complete with Mariachi music and costumes from Mexico City, all there to honor Mexico’s great artist, Frida Kahlo. Voice-overs in Spanish and English quote Frida’s original journal entries “I never paint dreams or nightmares. I paint my own reality.”
The images were photographed during a February 8, 2012 video taping session at Peter Cooper Village in Manhattan, prior to its first performance that afternoon. Photos of the scene with sister Cristina, courtesy of Michael Carson Productions.
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