Vetter shines on ice and at Carnegie Hall

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Vetter shines on ice and at Carnegie Hall

Photo courtesy of Ainsley Vetter

Photo courtesy of Ainsley Vetter

Alex Fedorov

Photo courtesy of Ainsley Vetter

Alex Fedorov

Alex Fedorov

Photo courtesy of Ainsley Vetter

Jacqueline Geller

Ice skating for 12 hours a week is only part of the after-school life for freshman Ainsley Vetter of Wall. At 14 years old, Vetter has already competed in ice dance on a national level and performed at Carnegie Hall as a pianist.

Vetter started skating when she was 6 years old. After a couple years, her coach recommended she try pattern ice dances, which would help with her skating technique. Little did she know, Vetter would immediately fall in love with it and eventually compete in the National Solo Dance Series Final in 2016. Here, she took home fourth place and a pewter medal. She aspires to return to the finals next year.

When she is not on the ice, Vetter is probably playing piano. She started the instrument at a young age, and as time went on, her passion for it grew.

Vetter participated in a competition called The Golden Key, which holds auditions every year. The winner and second place holder from New Jersey is given the opportunity to play at Carnegie Hall, Vetter said.

She placed third last year and performed at Lincoln Center, but this year, Vetter emerged victorious and played at Carnegie Hall.  

“Piano is so much fun, and it allows your brain to work in different ways than it normally would. You have to practice a lot but it pays off when you get to do things like playing at Carnegie Hall,” Vetter said.

Vetter intends to learn harder music and gain another invitation to perform at Carnegie Hall.

Vetter said time management is essential to balance piano, ice dance and school work. She practices piano at home when she finds free time and attends her scheduled skating practices.

“You have to get your homework done. You can’t watch TV or listen to music, or anything that is distracting,” Vetter said.

Ice dancing and piano might not have many obvious similarities, but they offer Vetter the best of both worlds.

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