Dancing On Ice Live Tour 2014: A fond memory for fans of the show

Joanna Dixon and Jo Pasquale

The stars were out in force on Friday as Manchester welcomed the Dancing On Ice Live Tour 2014. Former England Rugby Captain Kyran Bracken, singer Gareth Gates, Broadway and West End theatre star Bonnie Langford, comedian Joe Pasquale, actress Suzanne Shaw, Coronation Street’s Hayley Tamaddon and Olympic gymnast Beth Tweddle joined crowd favorite and series champion of all champions Ray Quinn on this final tour.

Alongside the celebrities, the tour welcomed the return of the original TV judges. Olympic gold medal winner Robin Cousins along with former professional skaters Karen Barber and Nicky Slater.

After watching the packed arena show we joined up with the performers at the intimate after-party held inside Room on King Street.

Pasquale left the audience in stitches as he skated the massive rink in a tiny pink dress

Earlier in the evening funny man Joe Pasquale left the audience in stitches as he skated around the massive rink in a tiny pink dress, Joe explains that it’s not as easy as it looks to combine skating and comedy…

It’s really weird when you think about the amount of rehearsals we do for what seems such a short time on the ice, maybe 6 minutes, that’s all. Normally when I’m doing a stand up I’m on stage for 2 hours. Both equally intense but what’s hard is combining comedy and skating. Tonight is the first time I’ve done that. It’s important for me to have a laugh when I’m out on the ice.

Jokes aside we think Joe’s actually a much better skater than he lets on…

You have to be, he confesses, you can’t do it deliberately bad unless you can do it well.

DOI Judge Karen Barber was never more than a few feet from the ice as she handed down her critique from the Judges table, and the former olympian told us that she was in her ellement during the finale when the judges could join in and hit the ice:

Tonight was very exciting, we were naturally nervous but everything fell into place nicely. She said. The first half of tonights show was more about the celebrity competition and the second part more of an exhibition, very fast and diverse, each number being very different from the next which is great for keeping the audience on their toes. And for the finale, the judges were allowed to join in so for me that was great.

Thankfully she’s has a sense of humour and laughed when we suggested she probably had GB wallpaper in her bedroom…

DOI favorite Beth Tweddle rocked up to the after party with the George cross shirt and bag: Thankfully she’s has a sense of humour and laughed when we suggested she probably had GB wallpaper in her bedroom…

To go from competing in the Olympics to DOI has been a massive change, I never dreamed I would get the opportunity to do something like this. She said smiling.

Gymnastics was much more physically demanding for me, the ice skating was something that I had to learn from the basics and I’ve been so hungry to learn more and get better. Almost like being 9 years old again when I was learning the basics of gymnastics.

The most frustrating part for me was not being able to stay on the ice for longer, the trainers would chase me off after 2 hours skating, I always want to stay and improve as quickly as I can. In truth I want it perfect straight away. They’d chase after me and I’d be shouting ‘No I’m not leaving, I’m staying on’.

Aside from meeting Torvill and Dean; to watch them perform the Bolero in a packed out Arena was the evening’s highlight and nothing short of thrilling…

We’ve performed it (Bolero) many times before over the years, and we never get bored doing it…We realise than many people know it but perhaps haven’t seen it before and hopefully they will remember it for a long time to come, we hope it creates a fond memory for those watching. Jayne told us.

A lot of people watched it at the time in 1984, and for many people they can remember what they were doing and where they were at the time, it's one of those moments. When they come to the show and see it again it creates a really strong connection. Christopher Added.

The highlight of the night for Torvill and Dean?

For the whole evening to go off as successfully as it did tonight and for everyone to have had such a good night. That’s all we could have asked for.

The four week UK tour kicked off on Friday 28th March at the Manchester Phones 4 U Arena and will visit London, Newcastle, Nottingham, Glasgow, Sheffield, Birmingham and culminating in Leeds on 27th April at the First Direct Arena.

If you get the opportunity to go, take it. This might just be your last chance to watch the Ice legends perform the Bolero and to witness Joe Pasquale attempt a butterfly jump in a tight pink dress... that’s worth the ticket price alone.