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[10/06/09 - 05:59 AM]
Hallmark Channel Acquires Exclusive Cable Rights to Star-Studded Package of Ice Skating Specials from Disson Skating
The specials kick-off with the premiere of "Halloween on Ice," Friday, October 30 (8 p.m., ET/PT).

[via press release from The Hallmark Channel]

HALLMARK CHANNEL ACQUIRES EXCLUSIVE CABLE RIGHTS TO STAR-STUDDED PACKAGE OF ICE SKATING SPECIALS FROM DISSON SKATING

"Halloween on Ice," Oct. 30, Premieres First as Part of Hallmark Channel's "Countdown to Halloween" Programming and Marketing Initiative

Hallmark Channel will jump into event programming with the acquisition of exclusive cable rights to a package of eight star-studded ice skating specials from Disson Skating, the nation's leading producer of nationally televised skating shows. The deal for the prime time specials was announced today by Michelle Vicary, Senior Vice President, Acquisitions and Scheduling.

"These specials have universal appeal to all ages and will be the perfect fit for Hallmark Channel viewers," said Vicary. "This acquisition is part of our goal to broaden our programming variety while making sure that we continue to provide entertaining content that is both true to our brand and can be enjoyed by everyone in the family."

The specials are: "Skate for the Heart," with Jordin Sparks; "Improv Ice"; "Halloween on Ice," with Mannheim Steamroller; "Kristi Yamaguchi & Friends," with Backstreet Boys; "Skating & Gymnastics Spectacular," with Ashley Tisdale; "Smokey Robinson Tribute on Ice," with Smokey Robinson; "Holiday Celebration on Ice," with REO Speedwagon and Rick Springfield; and, "Brian Boitano Skating Spectactular," with Chicago. They will all premiere in fourth quarter, 2009, and first quarter, 2010.

The specials kick-off with the premiere of "Halloween on Ice," Friday, October 30 (8 p.m., ET/PT). This special is also part of Hallmark Channel's "Countdown to Halloween" programming and marketing initiative. The initiative is the first holiday in the "Hallmark Channel Holiday Countdown" campaign -- a cross-platform initiative that will devote ongoing special event status leading to major annual holidays throughout the year.

"Hallloween on Ice" combines Halloween haunts with some of the world's most accomplished and decorated skaters.l Performances feature Olympic medalists Nancy Kerrigan (pictured), Todd Eldredge and Elvis Stojko; eight-time British Champion Steven Cousins; three-time Israeli National Champion Tamar Katz and more. Music legend Chip Davis is also featured with his band, Mannheim Steamroller.

Hallmark Channel, owned and operated by Crown Media Holdings, Inc., is a 24-hour basic cable network that provides a diverse slate of high-quality entertainment programming to a national audience of 87 million subscribers. The top tier program service is distributed through more than 5,450 cable systems and communities as well as direct-to-home satellite services across the country. Hallmark Channel consistently ranks among the highest-rated cable networks and is the nation's leading network in providing quality family programming. Hallmark Channel's sibling network is Hallmark Movie Channel which focuses on the greatest family movies of all time.

Disson Skating has become a significant force on the television skating scene, having created and produced more than 130 made-for-TV specials. In addition to annual shows featuring Olympic gold medalists Brian Boitano and Kristi Yamaguchi, and four-time World Champion Kurt Browning, Disson Skating has also produced numerous skating tribute shows featuring world-renowned musical performers, including Barry Manilow, Aretha Franklin, Ray Charles, Burt Bacharach, Andrea Bocelli, and most recently, Earth, Wind & Fire.





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