Compulsory Dance, review
Based on RTR-Sport TV-coverage
Commentators Ilya Averbukh and Alexay Popov
#1 Oksana Domnina/Maxim Shabalin
Same outfit as at Russian Nationals. Mostly black with red and silver sparkles. I thought they looked a bit bland, but may be t was just a TV. The moves were Ok, but the attack and character appeared to be lacking. Kind of reserved and concentrated on doing everything clean. There were small stumble on a step there she step "over" his leg (sorry, I am no good in dance technique). Averbukh liked them a lot and said that they have done all "key" steps properly. I thought they skated better in Kazan.
#2 Kamila Hajkova/David Vincour
She in red, he in black. Troubles keeping in holds in many places. Averbukh said their timing is off. No expression.
#3 Yana Khokhlova/Sergey Novistky
Both look very concentrated and agnsty. Unlike DomShab, they had a good expression. Like at Nationals, it was perhaps too angsty for "Romantica", but I like their attack and precision. Technically, there were some minor glitches (like unparallel free legs and such), but very good for the debut. Averbukh liked their power, but he thinks they can improve the positions, since they are sometimes too far apart.
#4 Philippa Towler-Green/Phillip Poole
Far apart, not very expressive. Connection to Lyon is lost, so nothing from Averbukh. Instead we have Elena Buryak, a judge, from Moscow studio, but she did not said anything useful.
#5 Julia Golovina/Oleg Voiko
She in yellow, he is also in pastel colours. Far apart, but smooth. Not very expressive, though. Averbukh is back. He said that while they had no apparent mistakes, but plenty of technical ones obvious to specialists. Patterns were different etc.
#6 Alexandra Kauc/Mikhal Zych
Yellow and black for both. Far apart, neraly missed holds in some places. Averbukh said what their mistakes were obvious for anyone, second pattern was much worse than first.
#7 Alessia Aurelli/Andrea Vaturi
She in red, he in black and white. As far as I can tell nothing good, nothing bad, but Averbukh said they were "suffering through" and he was suffering with them. Shallow edges, very careless positions and steps.
#8 Tatiana Navka/Roman Kostomarov
In last year OD costumes. Roman looked awful. Either he is ill or there is something very wrong with his make up. The dance was Ok, especially since it emphasize the lady anyway, but it wasn't that great. I looked for mistakes, but cannot spot anything serious. If they seriously messed up something, it must have been something "in-technique" people could only see. I only saw one minor stumble, plus they were perhaps too tight on some turns. Averbukh thinks they separated themselves from the rest of the pack by this skate, little did he know LOL.
#9 Zsuzsanna Nagy/Gyorgy Elek
She in red, he in black. The dance is obviously way too difficult for them. Struggling with holds and turns. Averbukh said they were tentative and that it really shows that they are juniors.
#10 Sinead Kerr/John Kerr
Both in black and silver. It was not bad, but overall impression is that of someone who is trying to hard to keep the holds and do the steps right. Very restrained and not in a "good" way (unlike "power under control" which would have been proper expression for tango). Averbukh said it is the weakest part of the competition for them and their best feature here is close position of partners, the rest (like edges and expression) leaves much to be desired. He did not like their costumes either.
#11 Galit Chait/Sergey Sakhnovsky
Black and silver for her, tails for him. I liked them more than NavKost. Better attack, "cleaner" or at least more emphasized positions. Her posture was a bit stiff in places and they could have skated closer to one another (they seemed to drifting further and closer throughout), but otherwise it was a very good dance. Averbukh liked them as well. He said they had improved from last season and what they were very precise. He predicted that they would finish ahead of DomShab and though it would be right.
#12 Alexandra Zaretski/Roman Zaretski
She in black, he in tuxedo and white shirt. Looked nervous. No glaring mistakes. Averbukh said they were always good in CDs and that he would have put them 6th behind KhokhNov.
#13 Federica Faiella/Massimo Scali
Federica changed the haircut and now look at least five years older than she used to. Sharp, perhaps even too sharp. In some places they looked as if they had to turn that fast in order to avoid some mishap. I am not sure I liked them more than DomShab, they seemed to be less in control of their moves. Averbukh saw two mistakes in their dance (by her) and thought that they did not deserved to finish ahead of DomShab. He said it was expressive, but technically way less than perfect.
#14 Nathalie Pechalat/Fabien Bourzat
Both in black. She is tge first girl so far who managed to look sultry while doing all the steps. Averbukh did not like them. He said it was not sharp enough and the timing was off.
#15 Leonie Krail/Oscar Peter
Swiss dance team, coming out of nowhere. Stiff, struggling with holds. Averbukh said that they challenging for the last place and would most likely succeed. Rough, but true.
#16 Kristin Frazer/Igor Lukanin
Last year FD costumes, she in black and white "zebra" dress, he in black with red trimming. I still find her posture awful and unsuitable for tango. Far apart throughout most of the dance. Very slow and visibly struggling to keep going towards the end. Averbukh thinks they had good edges and he thinks they should have finished behind DomShab and ahead of Kerrs.
#17 Christina Beier/William Beier
Both in black and red. Not enough accents. Averbukh said it was technically good, but it wasn't real dance. They simply get through the moves.
#18 Nora Hoffman/Attila Elek
Black dress with no back and red rose on the shoulder for Nora, black and silver for Attila. Great expression and attack from Nora, but he sort of faded into background. To my untrained eye they looked very expressive, but equally messy: Nice close positions, good accents, but they looked rushed and out of control. Averbukh is busy reading quick quotes and did not comment on them.
#19 Elena Grushina/Ruslan Goncharov
She in red, he in white short and black pants and waistcoast. Very soft, good accents. All top teams looked uncomfortable in the corners because the rink is not Olympic-sized one (neither is it "Canadian sized") and there were lots of complaints about it from dancers. Frankly, I do not see how they were better than NavKost. It was good but not outstanding. I am not sure if it matters, but they sort of "change" a style throughout the pattern. At first they were soft, then they have a sequence of sharp and angsty moves, then soft again. Is it supposed to be this way? Even if it does, it still looks rather distracting. Averbukh said they were flawless and secure and, as he tentatively put it, in some places even better than NavKost.
#20 Margarita Drobiazko/Povilas Vanagas
Black with silver and gold. Huge uproar from the crowd. I actually think they were the best today. Confident, powerful, with good posture and clean steps throughout. Close positions as well. I cannot comment on accuracy of pattern or depth of edges, because we mostly have "overview" from rather weird angles, but in all other aspects they were at least as good if not better than the rest. Averbukh said he disagree with GruGon first place, but thinks that the first half of DrobVan was better than Ukranians. He said they do some moves like no one do today and he liked it better this way. He did not elaborate. I wonder if they will hold up in OD and FD. I saw their FD from Karl Schaefer Memorial and thought that it was awful. Averbukh joked that he should have come back as well, but said he did not regret the choices he made and ejoyed being coach and father and having his own tour.
#21 Isabelle Delobel/Olivier Schoenfelder
Olivier in costume, Isabelle in rather nice black dress. I think the first pattern was excellent, but no sooner I thought that it was a toss up between them and other top teams then Olivier fell :( They had very nice lines and good "restrained" character. If it was not for the fall.... I might have had them 1st. With the mistakes Averbukh would have had them much lower and claimed its "hometown" judging and what Israels were robbed.
#22 Anastasia Grebenkina/Vazgen Azroyan
Both in black. Very sharp on turns and quite aggressive in character. Nice close positions. Personally, I have no idea there to put them. Averbukh is still discussing top teams placements and did not offer any opinion. Judges put them 14th.