Field Trip

Seal on Ice: One Cool Benefit

By Amy Orndorff
Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, December 14, 2007

The advertisement heralds: "The Music of Seal on Ice!" Seal performing with Kristi Yamaguchi, Brian Boitano, Todd Eldredge and Michael Weiss at Verizon Center!

First, to answer the obvious questions: No, soulful singer Seal won't be skating. No, Seal will not be wearing "a leotard like Brian Boitano." Does Seal skate at all? "Very badly," he says.

And no, wife and German supermodel Heidi Klum will not be performing with him as she did on the "Victoria's Secret Fashion Show."

But back to the concert and why it's worth your time.

Five dollars of every ticket purchased for the Tuesday show will go toward Autism Speaks, which funds autism research. Seal, who had an autistic friend as a teen and feels close to the cause, says the performance is about raising awareness and putting on a good show.

"I think whenever you get the opportunity to do something you love in a really interesting way and for a cause that is quite obviously a worthy one, I think you really have to snap at that opportunity," Seal says, on the phone from a hotel in London.

The model for the unconventional concert comes from an eight-show series he performed last year in Switzerland. He says he thought the idea of combining his music with ice skaters was strange at first, but, to his surprise, the music translates well from the dance floor to the ice rink.

"When you look out and you are playing with people who are actually skating, and skating at that high level, you kind of become one complete band," Seal says.

This is not the first or the last time that Seal, 44, will be charitable. Coming out next year will be a book of photographs that he took with Klum while traveling in India recently. A portion of the proceeds from the book will benefit a school there.

"It's no different from anybody else," he says of volunteering. "I get asked to do things all the time, and if it is humanly possible for me to do them, then I think it is really important to try and give back."

Like so many of us who feel the urge to share talents this holiday season, Seal says he feels obligated to help others since he considers himself to be in an "extremely fortunate position."

But even "extremely fortunate" is an understatement. His wife is a supermodel ("I just got lucky," he says), and their three children "perform these little miracles all throughout the day." The Grammy-winning artist recently released a new CD, "System," which features a duet with Klum that he wrote on their wedding day. Whatever the future brings for him, Seal makes one thing clear: Whether you are an Olympic-level skater, an award-winning singer or simply someone able to spare $40 on a ticket, you can do something enjoyable to help someone else.

CONTINUED     1        >

© 2007 The Washington Post Company