Scott Hamilton has remained a fixture in the skating community for decades and now the Olympic gold medalist is bringing his talents to Nashville. On Sunday (Nov. 20), he will act as host for An Evening with Scott Hamilton & Friends at the Bridgestone Arena which will combine music with skating to raise money for cancer patients around the world.
Proceeds of the event will go to the Scott Hamilton CARES Foundation, an independent foundation based in Nashville that aims to fund cancer research and improve cancer survivorship. Hamilton says events like next weekend’s will help to grow the foundation and network in Music City.
“We really would love to change how people look at cancer and how they deal with it,” Hamilton tells Sounds Like Nashville. “We have a lot of plans, but without financial support it’s really tough for us to do that.”
Hamilton has hosted a similar event over the past 17 years in Cleveland, but typically with only one performer. He says the combination of five artists with Olympic-styled skating is a unique blend that will be a treat for the Nashville audience.
Sheryl Crow, Jewel, Sara Evans, Rodney Crowell and Ben Rector are the musicians slated to perform on Nov. 20 while Olympic champions Meryl Davis and Charlie White, Ekaterina Gordeeva, Brian Boitano and Steven Cousins will skate alongside their music live on the ice.
“It is really extraordinary for the Nashville community because they don’t get to see skating at this level very often,” Hamilton notes, saying his goal is that the evening will be a memorable one that the audience will want to come and see again.
“All these songs that you’ve heard on the radio a million times, well now you’re going to see them perform that song while a skater performs to the music right in front of them, which is truly explosive and powerful,” he adds.
Hamilton is a cancer survivor himself, having beat the disease in 1997. He recently received a diagnosis that his brain tumor is back for the third time but he remains optimistic about the outcome.
“God has blessed me on so many levels that for me to only look at the challenges and never what happens next would be really lame and unfortunate. Life is meant to be lived joyfully. I’ve been knocked down a lot, but that doesn’t mean I have to forget the great stuff,” he reasons. “I’ve survived enough where I know that there’s a process to it. There’s a beginning, a middle, and an end. The beginning is when you’re diagnosed, and it’s like ‘Oh, I wish that didn’t happen, but it did so I’ll figure this thing out.’ Then there’s the treatment and there’s getting back to life, so when it happens a lot you know that all it is is a process, and then you respect the process and then you get back to living. It’s very important that you remain joyful throughout.”
Hamilton says that no one can dread something away. Instead, he has accepted that his tumor must be dealt with.
“I can’t wish it away. I can’t yell at it away. I can’t do any of those things, so I just need to deal with it, and that’s okay,” he says. “Then we get back to life.”
An Evening with Scott Hamilton & Friends at the Bridgestone Arena will take place at 5 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 20. Tickets are available via Ticketmaster. To receive a special buy-one-get-one-free offer, use the offer code SMILE when purchasing through Ticketmaster. For more information on the Scott Hamilton CARES Foundation, visit their website.