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‘The Greatest Showman’ takes centerstage in Lake Placid

July 18, 2019
By CHRISTIE SAUSA - Correspondent , Lake Placid News

LAKE PLACID - The finale of the July 13 Saturday Night Ice Show was set to the song, "The Greatest Show" from the 2017 musical hit The Greatest Showman, appropriate considering that the skater who perhaps embodies showmanship the most was the star on this night.

Skating alongside 14 skaters participating in the Lake Placid Summer Skating program, 2011 national champion and World competitor Ryan Bradley performed two programs, one to a Motown medley, which has become a crowd favorite in Lake Placid, and the other, a more serious program to "Don't Give Up On Me" by Andy Grammer. Bradley also joined the other ice show participants in the finale, briefly skating with the group as the "PT Barnum" of the "circus," before completing more tricks and taking a bow with his fellow skaters.

Bradley has always been one of the most anticipated guest stars. Whereas others sometimes lose their "spark" after years of show skating, Bradley still knows how to play to the audience, not only with a "big trick" like a gravity-defying backflip or triple jump, but also with a simple facial expression or gesture. It is this ability that allows him to continue his successful show skating career with companies and groups that include Stars on Ice, Ice Dance International and The Next Ice Age.

Article Photos

Ryan Bradley performs during the Saturday Night Ice Show on July 13 in the Olympic Center.
Provided photo — Christie Sausa

Based in Sun Valley, Idaho during the summer, Bradley coaches on the famous outdoor surface overshadowed by the Sun Valley Resort, and performs in their weekly Saturday Night Ice Shows, which started on July 4 and continue until September.

Another facet of Bradley's involvement in skating is commentating. He has worked for both the Olympic Channel and NBC Sports.

"Honestly, I have no idea if I will commentate (this season) yet, it's contract by contract," Bradley said. "It's a fun gig when it's there and a good way to keep track of the sport."

Even though it is not his primary skating activity anymore, Bradley still skates in shows, not only in Sun Valley and Lake Placid during the summer, but during the winter and spring season. He usually comes back to Lake Placid after Christmas for Stars on Ice, which usually takes place right before the New Year in the 1980 Rink.

"Holidays are my busiest time ... I did quite a few club shows in the spring," Bradley said. "The schedule is always varied. (Skating in shows used to be) once every weekend. Those days are long gone, which is nice, because then I get weekends to enjoy my life a little bit, get to travel and see friends."

The rest of the year, Bradley gives back by coaching at the Oakton Ice Arena in Park Ridge, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago. He works alongside 1981 World silver medalist and two-time Olympian David Santee, the director of skating at the facility, and serves as a secondary coach for about 15 students, coaching four to eight hours daily.

"Definitely as I get older, the coaching side of things becomes more of a day-to-day thing. I enjoy getting to go through that journey again with a fresh set of eyes," Bradley said. "I'm fortunate to work with great coaches. Each coach has me serve a different role for each skater. Sometimes I'm a jump coach, sometimes a choreographer. So it's been very fun and fulfilling."

Next week, the Saturday Night Ice Show will feature 2018 National Champion and Olympian Bradie Tennell, who willl be making her Saturday Night Ice Show debut.

For more information on Lake Placid Summer Skating, including ice shows, go to



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