Brittany Rae Steding is a friendly, girl-next-door type with a big smile. But at work, she’s a real ice queen.
The Green Tree native is a professional wrestler for the National Wrestling Alliance (NWA), where she plays a heel known as Lady Frost.
On Aug. 28, Steding will compete in NWA EmPowerrr, the first-ever, all-female, Pay Per View wrestling event airing live from St. Louis on Fite. The winner of the inaugural NWA Women’s Invitational Cup tournament will face champion Kamille for the belt the following night for the NWA’s 73rd Anniversary Show.
Mickie James, a six-time World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) Women’s Champion, is the executive producer of the show. NWA is owned by musician Billy Corgan of The Smashing Pumpkins fame.
Steding sees the promotion as a watershed moment in wrestling history.
“Mickie is an icon of women’s wrestling,” she says. “She fights for our spot in the industry and wants to prove that women can draw fans and make money. She’s bringing in women from everywhere and providing us with a platform.”
Wrestling is in Steding’s blood.
Her grandfather, the late Tony Silipini, was a studio wrestler who teamed up with Bruno Sammartino and feuded with George “The Animal” Steele. The pile driving patriarch went by various names, including Battman, Dino Lanza and Tony Marino.
Although Steding didn’t grow up doing missile dropkicks off her living room couch, she’s spent a lifetime as a dancer and gymnast, activities that helped her become a personal trainer, fitness model and powerlifter — and later break into the male-dominated world of studio wrestling.
She met her husband, a professional wrestler, boxer and mixed martial artist named Victor Benjamin, at a fitness convention.
She not only fell in love with him but with the thrill of Fight Night: from the cheering fans and dramatic storylines to the high-flying theatrics taking place on the mat.
The couple often wrestles as a tag team. Together, The Savage Gentleman Victor Benjamin and Lady Frost are a genteel, yet intimidating, force to be reckoned with.
With her frosted hair, silver boots and white cape, Steding is the antithesis of Elsa from Disney’s “Frozen.”
A regular on the popular weekly series NWA Powerrr, Lady Frost has perfected her signature moves, including the Temperature Drop, Frosted Mini Feets, the Icebreaker and the Snowball Fight. Occasionally she gets to play the hero, or babyface, but being a villain (or heel), she says, is more fun.
Part actress, part stuntwoman, Steding spends at least six days a week in the gym to keep up with the physical demands of her job.
She made her professional, in-ring debut on March 26, 2018, during an episode of WWE’s “Monday Night Raw.” It was an auspicious start for a fledgling wrestler.
Since then, she’s been touring the country, competing in different wrestling promotions as a solo athlete and alongside her husband. She’s the reigning women’s champion of Hurricane Pro Wrestling in Texas. Her other big combat zones include Florida and Chicago.
She hopes Pittsburgh — with its ties to wrestling history — will grow into another one of the nation’s grappling hubs.
Her advice to anybody who dreams of bouncing off the ropes in a televised battle? Take care of your mind, body and soul first.
Despite Lady Frost’s reputation as a cold-hearted bully, Steding separates fantasy from reality.
“I’m always baffled when fans recognize me out in public,” Steding says, laughing. “With the internet, it’s crazy how far our reach can go. I want to connect with my audience and let them know that I’m a real person living a real life. I’m not Lady Frost every day. I’m relatable!”