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Vail’s hottest ice

Caramie Schnell
cschnell@vaildaily.com
Vail, CO Colorado
Special to the Vail Daily/Paul WertinPeter Slavin, a partner in Fear No Ice, came up with the idea for the ice sculpture "Frozen Grace." It's the physical representation of the tingling sensation you get when you walk into a sacred place, he says
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VAIL, Colorado –Grace’s butt was rock solid. Well, frozen solid at least. Because of that, she must hail from Colorado’s Vail Valley, surmised Avon resident Martha Brassel Wednesday evening as she looked at “Frozen Grace,” a 12-foot tall ice sculpture of a lithe woman on display outside of the Cascade Resort in Vail.

“It’s not exactly a Boticelli bottom,” Brassel said, laughing.

Three men –Avon resident Scott Rella, Kevin Roscoe and Peter Slavin – sculpted Grace this week. They also sculpted a handful of ice towers surrounding her, all topped with starbursts encased in diamond-shaped cubes and all lit from below with purple lights.

The men are partners in Fear No Ice, a worldwide performance ice sculpting company and while they worked, three camera men filmed their every move.

The footage will be used to produce a sizzle reel and pilot for a documentary-style television show based on the company, Rella said. A sizzle reel gives a prospective production company an abbreviated representation of what a show will be. A pilot is then the first episode of a show.

Rella, who is also the owner of local ice sculpting company Aspen Vail Ice, has a contract with Sony Pictures and he will produce and host the show, that is if a network bites.

“I’ve done a lot of television shows over the years, Rachel Ray, David Letterman and I did the Food Network a few times,” Rella said. “They flew me out to L.A. and asked if I wanted to have my own show. Since then, there’s been seven people who have asked if I was interested in doing a TV show on the world of ice.”

The company recently did live ice sculpting shows in Dubai and Bahrain and has an upcoming event in Hong Kong, Rella said.

Rella and his manager in New York pitched the show idea to a few different companies, including Sony.

“Sony said they loved it and not to talk to anyone else,” Rella said.

With the cameras running 8 to 10 hours a day since Sunday, Rella and his partners, Slavin and Roscoe, as well as Aspen Vail Ice partner Rob Capone carved ice sculptures in Rella’s home studio in Wildridge and did on-camera interviews this week.

The potential show’s producer is Michael McNamara, who has worked on VH1’s Behind the Music and more recently on the reality television series Baldwin Hills. He was also in town this week for filming.

Rella is calling the show a docu-series, not a reality television show.

“It’ll just show who we are, the big jobs we do around the world,” Rella said. “There’s no formula, just shoot it everywhere we go. Nothing is staged.”

The film crew got plenty of footage this week, he said.

“If someone loves it, we have the first episode in the bag,” Rella said.

At Wednesday’s party around 25 people sipped steaming Irish coffees and other cocktails and milled around the ice sculptures. All the while the cameras were rolling.

Local company Pink Monkey Solutions helped stage the party. They lit the ice sculptures from within, as well as decked out the patio with posh chairs and carpets.

Standing next to the glowing Frozen Grace, Roscoe, a Seattle resident, summed up the pilot, and its future, succinctly.

“If they love it, we’ll take it to the next level,” he said.

But no matter what happens, Frozen Grace is doomed to melt.

“The sad thing about ice sculptures is that when it’s all over, everyone walks away and it dies a lonely death,” Brassel said.

High Life Editor Caramie Schnell can be reached at 970-748-2984 or cschnell@vaildaily.com.


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