Everyone in the upper school knows Sixth Former Cameron Colucci for his goofy sense of humor and impressive intellectual ability. But Colucci possesses another unique set of skills outside of the classroom: world-class ice dancing.
Sixth Formers may remember a fifth grade assembly where Colucci went up in front of the audience and explained his sport to a crowd of wide-eyed ten-year olds. He then played a video of what looked like two Olympians gliding on the ice — it was he and his partner.
Colucci participates in ice dancing, a subcategory of figure skating. In ice dancing, you skate in pairs, which are required to be one man and one woman. This is the first challenge: finding a partner.
Colucci said, “For me, it [finding a partner] was really hard. I was with my first partner for four years. She was supposed to go to Conestoga but then she moved to New York. It is hard to find the right partners. They have to be a perfect height, treat you nicely and also excel at skating. It’s really rough because I found some people who treated me badly or were not particularly great skaters.”
In an ice dancing competition, competitors are scored based on how many of the required dance moves, lifts and spins and other athletic feats on ice, are successfully and gracefully completed. Here lies the second challenge: ice time. Colucci trains at least three hours a day.
“When I am training with a partner, I have to train at least three hours a day on the ice,” Colucci said. “Usually I have to leave school at about 2:15, or I will skate in the morning. I would have a two-hour practice and then I would have a break and do a workout or some other off-ice classroom study for one hour. Then I would eat dinner really quickly, and then do another hour or 30 minutes of practice. My day would finish at about 8 o’clock.”
Colucci began skating when he was four years old and picked up ice dancing at age seven.
“The past few years have been sort of rough for me, trying to find partners and stuff,” Colucci said. “I’ve competed in Germany. I’ve done international competitions in Lake Placid, New York. Unfortunately, over the last few years, I’ve had to look for partners. I’ve been to Moscow and all over Canada. It’s been a rough journey for me.”
When asked if he plans on continuing his skating career after high school, Colucci said, “Yes, I do plan on continuing ice dance. I applied to Georgetown, McGill, and University of Michigan, which are all places where they have Olympic Training Centers. I’m looking forward to continuing my ice dance career in college.”