By MICHILEA PATTERSON
21st Century Media Intern
Princesses, heroes, carriages and tiaras sound like just a fairy tale but it’s also an engaged couple’s reality.
Dreams really do come true, at least for Cinderella and Prince Charming of the Disney on Ice production “Princesses and Heroes.” Sara Buck and Sacha Lalonde portray the fairytale duo on skates and are getting married this July at Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario.
Buck said Lalonde proposed to her in Bangkok, Thailand. He surprised her with a fancy dinner at the Sky Bar, she said. The 360-degree bar is one of the highest in the world and is known for its views of the city.
“He proposed just as the sun was setting,” Buck said adding that the scenery was beautiful.
Lalonde and Buck met on the show about four years ago, she said. “Princesses and Heroes” tells the story of eight Disney princesses — Cinderella, Ariel, Belle, Rapunzel, Tiana, Jasmine, Aurora and Snow White — and the defining moments with their heroes.
This is Lalonde’s 13th season with Disney on Ice while Buck’s been with the production for four years. Buck got interested in skating after watching the Olympics when she was younger and liked the “sparkly dresses” seen on TV, she said. Lalonde said he started taking lessons when he was young. He has competed in the Canadian Figure Skating Championships.
The couple’s been inseparable since that epic meeting four years ago, literally since they work together as Disney characters. Buck said although they’ve been on tour together for several years, this is the first year the couple skated together in a principal role. She said skating opposite her fiancé is comfortable and easy.
“We’ve always worked really well together,” she said.
Lalonde said skating with Buck is very special.
“It’s a great feeling when I’m on the ice with Sara,” he said. “It’s magical.”
Lalonde said it’s an honor to portray Disney characters such as Prince Charming to children. Charming is one of my favorite princes because he’s mature, he said. Lalonde said the role is perfect for him because he is more established in his life right now.
Buck said maturity isn’t the only qualities Charming and Lalonde share. She said both are also kind and have a good sense of adventure.
“He’s my real life Prince Charming,” Buck said speaking of Lalonde.
Lalonde said Buck personifies several of her character Cinderella’s qualities. He said Buck loves life and is very outgoing.
The tour has allowed the couple to travel the world together and experience different cultures. Lalonde and Buck said they are constantly on the move on the show and get to travel together. The couple has visited Mount Everest, the countryside of Ireland and more.
“We’ve been to some pretty incredible places,” Buck said.
The couple also plans to travel to another beautiful destination for their honeymoon. Buck said Lalonde always promised to take her to Paris. Lalonde has visited the city before but it will be a first for Buck. Lalonde said he doesn’t want his past experience in France to determine how they spend their time there as a couple.
“I want her to enjoy Paris in her own way,” he said.
Although it’s a lovely coincidence that Cinderella and Charming of Disney on Ice are engaged in real life, it’s not uncommon for skating Disney characters to find romance on tour. Buck said three or four couples from the show got engaged last year.
“It happens more than people think,” she said.
Now that the couple will soon be married, they plan to settle down in a few years. Buck said Lalonde and she have coached skating in the past and consider it an option when they retire from Disney on Ice.
“Skating will always be a part of our lives in some form or other,” she said.
For now, the couple continues to enjoy skating as some Disney’s most memorable characters. Buck said the whole family can enjoy “Princesses and Heroes.” We have iconic princesses as well as modern princesses, she said. She also said there is a lot of talent on this year’s cast which makes for a great show.
“If you’ve never been to a Disney on Ice show this is the best one to come to,” she said.
“Princess and Heroes” will be performed at Santander Arena in Reading starting April 10 through April 13. The show time on April 10 and 11 is 7 p.m. The show will be performed at 11 a.m., 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. on April 12. On April 13, there is a 1 p.m. show and 5 p.m. show.
Ticket prices are $25, $40 and $60, although additional fees may apply. Tickets are available at the Santander Arena box office and all Ticketmaster locations. Tickets can also be bought over the phone at 800-745-3000 or online at www.ticketmaster.com.