Skating at Wormsley: absolute freedom!

Alice Poggio performs the role of Nuria's double in the skating scenes during the world premiere performances ofThe Skating Rink this summer. 

Tell us a bit about yourself and where you're from.
I'm 22 and finishing my degree in Technical Arts and Special Effects at University of the Arts, London, figure skating and training in the mornings as well as waitressing part-time. I'm originally from Italy but have moved around my whole life. After I graduate I hope to keep the momentum going and pursue figure skating in the future.

What inspired you to be an ice skater and how did you begin? 
I fell in love with skating when the Winter Olympics came to my hometown of Turin in 2006. I had to go and try it and wanted to start training immediately. There is a feeling of absolute freedom and calm that you can't compare. It allows me to step away from any problems and fill my lungs with fresh air and pure happiness. I have had to take a few breaks between moving countries but the feeling hasn't changed and I've always managed to keep going. 

What are your goals for your skating career?
I would love to start doing shows regularly and take advantage of the freedom when my studies have finished to travel. I'd like to apply for ice show companies that perform on cruise-ships and then consider coaching part-time, working in the special effects or fine arts industries or maybe a combination of all three.

How did you get involved with Garsington Opera? 
One day when I was training at the rink, Sarah Fahie (movement director The Skating Rink) saw me and invited me to get involved in the production as I looked right for the part. It is a great opportunity. 

How are you preparing for the performance? 
I am keeping up my usual training - working out, increasing stamina and practicing my programme for my own tests. I'm also reading the novel that the production is based on to better understand the emotions at play and how to convey them. Nuria is struggling and trying to pull through and do her best. Having suffered my own injuries and setbacks I can definitely relate and hopefully that will be perceived by the audience. 

What are you looking forward to about working at Garsington Opera and have you ever performed on stage before? 
I haven't performed on a stage before and I think there's much to be gained from it. It will push me to do my best and I'm really looking forward to it. The beautiful grounds, the setup, the cast and the special audience will, without a doubt, amount to an incredible and unique experience.