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  • Liane Morris

Disney Magic Revs Up in Newcastle With Dazzling Road Trip Adventures On Ice


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IMAGES SOURCE: FELD ENTERTAINMENT

The favourite of families everywhere, Disney On Ice returns to Newcastle with a new spectacular, multi-generational experience at the Newcastle Entertainment Centre from 11 to 14 July.

 

Disney On Ice presents Road Trip Adventures, whisking families away on an immersive, magical and interactive getaway with both classic characters that Grandma grew up with and the more contemporary favourites that young ones have seen on the big screens in more recent years.


Join Mickey Mouse and his pals for a high octane road trip with exciting twists and turns as Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, and guests of all ages embark on a participatory and memory-rich adventure to iconic Disney destinations. See the world from the rooftops of London with Mary Poppins and Jack and his band of dancing lamplighters. Travel to the sun-soaked Motunui and help Moana restore the heart of Te Fiti.


Set off on a safari and snap unforgettable photos of wild cheetahs and monkeys when guests traverse the Pride Lands with Simba, Timon and Pumbaa. Discover a whole new world and be swept up in Aladdin’s princely parade filled with spectacular stunts, magical moments with Genie, and a brand-new song from Jasmine that will render the audience

“Speechless”. Mosey on over to a larger-thanlife comedic carnival and team up with Woody and Bo Peep as they search for their new friend Forky.


Fans will hit a high note with Mickey and pals while singing along to beloved Disney tunes as they welcome Merida, Belle, Ariel, Mulan and Tiana to the ice. Families should be prepared for a getaway jam-packed with unexpected hijinks and surprises and up-close character interactions that will delight kids of all ages.


The annual visit of Disney On Ice to Newcastle has become a tradition for many Novocastrian families, and each production sees new and exciting additions to the show, bringing the audiences back year after year. This year, audiences can expect to see aerial acts, actual BMX bikes on ice, and the usual incredible skating skills and tricks!


Jessinta Martin, who plays Bo Peep in Road Trip Adventures, was just five years old when she decided she wanted to learn how to skate. Growing up in Adelaide, Jessinta had seen an ice skating competition on ABC TV.


“According to family history, I turned to my Mum and said I wanted to try ice skating,” said Jessinta. “Mum took me to the local ice rink, and when I didn’t fall over, I was intrigued enough to keep going. It was a couple of years later that I saw my first Disney On Ice production, and as soon as I saw it, I knew that was what I wanted to do when I grew up. So, I’ve always wanted to do what I’m doing now. I guess it’s a dream come true!”


As Jessinta grew up she began competitive ice skating and was the state champion in South Australia for 11 years. She skated at a national level and represented Australia in single and synchronised skating, winning the 2006 silver medal at the Australian National Championships. She competed until she turned age 23 and doesn’t miss it.


“Both performing and competition require a lot of discipline, but competition is a lot more technical and consists of a regime that stays the same every day. The pressure is different, too. I much prefer performing. The audience’s reaction when we come out onto the ice is so electric and such an amazing feeling. I love learning choreography too, and I’ve also taken up aerial training.”


Jessinta got her big break with Disney On Ice on literally the last day of her university study. She has a Bachelor of Arts/Education from Flinders University and is trained as a primary school teacher.


“I finished my last class at Uni and came home to an email from Feld Entertainment, who produce Disney On Ice, offering me a role. It was perfect timing. These days, I take on casual teaching roles when I’m home in between contracts. Most contracts are nine months long. I was also able to teach during the pandemic when all our shows closed down.”


Jessinta adores her job and is excited by her new role as Bo Peep.


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“Life on tour creates a second family. When I was competing, I was quite isolated, but with Disney On Ice, we’re a team; it’s a social thing, and it’s very special. I love playing Bo Peep. She’s a strong, independent woman with great determination, and she takes charge, telling Woody, Jessie, Buzz and Forky what to do. It’s so much fun, and I’m thrilled that this is the first time that the Toy Story 4 characters are on ice.”


Jessinta has been busy developing her skill set and adding aerial work to her bow. In this production, she has the opportunity to fly and skate.


“It took me nine months of training to get strong enough in my upper body to be able to lift and hold myself up. Skaters are very lowerbody dominant, so I had to develop my upper body before I could do it. I’m excited to be performing in Australia again and being able to do both the skating and the flying!”


In addition to new aerial acts, this show also features real BMX bikes on the ice. Michael DiNello, from Schaumburg, Illinois, USA, didn’t begin skating until 2019, but he’s been riding bikes since junior high and, along with his

friends, competing in BMX competitions as he grew up.


“It wasn’t until I was 27 that a friend contacted me with an opportunity to work at Ringling Bros Circus. Prior to performing, I was a licensed HVAC contractor; my bicycle let me run away with the circus, and ice was only something I saw when I watched hockey.”


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Michael spent two years with the circus and then, in 2019, joined a friend, Kenny Short, working on the build of the Road Trip Adventures show, puzzling out how to get BMX bikes on the ice after jumping from ramps successfully.


“We noticed that mountain bikers often jump from one type of terrain to another, sometimes with snow, and we looked at how they did that. We looked at the ice resurfacing machines and took note of the studs in the tyres; then, we custom-built our own studded tyres, which enabled us to ride up ramps and jump onto the ice with consistency.


“I was 31 when I started on skates. I picked it up from having the luxury of ice time, but my main role in this show is during the Mary Poppins Return scene. We Trip a Little Light Fantastic, simulating the scene from the movie in an old London setting, recreated on ice complete with the bikes and flying Chinese poles. It’s spectacular, very special.


“My journey has been pretty remarkable. Every time I perform, it remotivates me to keep going. When you hear the roar from the audience, the burst of laughter, or see a single smile, it gives you a feeling you can’t replicate. I like to make the audience smile; laughter is the best feeling you can ever give someone.”


The schedule for all the performers on the road is intense, with continued training throughout the schedule, as well as the shows and travel time. All the performers are health conscious and super fit. Michael is a vegan who loves to cook and is

passionate about his coffee.


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“I’ve heard that Newcastle has some great coffee places I’m excited to try. And I’m keen to visit some of my old bike buddies from Australia. I haven’t been before. Everyone raves about it.”


One thing that both Jessinta and Michael have in common is a deep passion for what they’re doing and a joy that comes from sharing the magic of Disney with families and young people.


Don’t miss your chance to build precious magical memories with your family. Book now through www.disneyonice.com/en-au.




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