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Elton John snow sculpture

British sculptors make Sir Elton the star of the snow in Ischgl

British snow sculptors Justin Scott and Martin Sharp are feeling on top of the world after completing their stunning likeness of Sir Elton John on the slopes of Ischgl in the Austrian Tirol.

The two Yorkshiremen are frequent visitors to Ischgl to take part in the resort's annual Shapes in White competition - in fact Justin met his wife Jasmina there - and with this year's theme being 25 years of Top Of The Mountain rock concerts, it was the perfect opportunity to create a homage to Sir Elton John, who has twice performed open air gigs in Ischgl.

It was the second time that tree surgeon and gardener Justin, from Driffield, had modelled Elton in snow - the first was in January 2003 and he was thrilled to develop his design for this year.

Said Justin: 'We've done the best work we could have possibly done given the timescale. It's a homage to the performance on the mountain, with the stage - and of Elton John, a British artist.

'One of the elements I do is to make a hollow in the sculpture. I cut it and Martin made the hollow and in the hollow he's made a seat. Around it says Sir Elton John and a star, number 1, and people have been coming in and sitting there and having their photograph taken.

'Initially when I first came here it was for a snowboarding holiday and as a trained sculptor it's great to come away and do something with the snow. Ischgl means a lot to me.'

His sculpting partner, Martin, is a business coach and mentor from York. Ten pairs of sculptors from across Europe competed in the 27th annual Shapes in White, with Italians Ivan Holzknecht and Armin Rifesser from Val Gardena coming top with their creation 'Guitar and Saxophone'.

The sculptures will remain on the slopes to be admired by skiers and boarders until the Spring thaw.

Ischgl's Silvretta Arena, which includes extensive cross-border skiing into Switzerland, comprises 239kms of perfectly groomed piste and 45 state-of-the-art skilifts. The five month long season is opened and closed by big name open-air concerts. This winter was opened on 30 November 2019 by Berlin-based cult band Seeed and will close on 3 May 2020, the day after the season-ending Top Of The Mountain concert by Italian pop-rock icon Eros Ramazzotti.

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