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Thread: Quick Report on COI Meadowlands

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    Bona Fide Member Spun Silver's Avatar
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    Quick Report on COI Meadowlands

    Yes, I do believe I was the one yelling bravo, bravo in the vicinity of Doubleaxel. OK, I screamed for Sasha and Johnny because I finally got to see them live, yay!!! For Surya because I have fond memories of her. For Pang and Tong, even though I'm not really crazy about them, because after seeing the sparse audience at 4CC they thought Americans don't like Chinese skaters, and they came such a long way and I wanted to give them a warm welcome. For Plushenko because he was so on. For Lang and Tchernyshev (?) because I'd barely heard of them and they were just gorgeous. For Alissa because she's alluring, to quote myself. For the fallen angels because they really were heavenly. And I'm not even a fan of show skating!

    Crowd was smallish, about 1/3 of the bottom half of the stadium, I think, with the top half empty. Could the time change have affected attendance? There were enough people to make a respectable crowd, but not enough to express contagious enthusiasm. The only really big applause was for Victor Petrenko with his 9-year-old daughter (not VP alone). Next for the acrobats (they were good, my bf really liked them) and next for Sasha.

    Well, I talked about Plushenko in his thread. Johnny was perfection, my only quibble being that I was seated in the wrong location for his some of his moves, but he had such ease in his jumps and the spins were beautiful and fast and the whole thing was just one of those seamless pieces of Weirian poetry. The peak of the show for me.

    I have to admit Evan, the anti-Johnny, was also good. The guy can dance and his black wristbands were very effective when he was spinning. My bf had the gall to prefer him and Evgeny to Johnny.

    Surya jumped up a storm and landed everything but was kind of slow and clunky between jumps.

    I agree with my best bud Kwanford that Alissa was a bit disappointing. She landed some jumps but also popped one and singled another and generally wasn't mesmerizing. Lovely spins, of course, but not enough of them. She skated to the same music as Pang and Tong (different arrangement)... some classical chestnut - I forget what it's called right now.

    P&T were good but not exciting. Their twist made me gasp, though! Anissina and Peizerat were very French and some of their lifts (especially the gender-reversed ones) were nice. Rudy is a true showman. When he came slithering out of his onstage "closet" (held up around him by Shae-Lynn) in a white sequin tanksuit, you knew you were gonna have fun, and you did. I couldn't believe he was doing triples after what I'd read about him.

    As I mentioned, Lang & Tchernyshev were just marvelous. (Right again, Joe!) Maybe they will be like the Protopopovs and continue to demonstrate true partnering on ice for decades to come. Even though their number was accompanied by a mawkish voiceover, they were so exquisite that I didn't care. One of the highlights of the show.

    Ryan Bradley wiggled a lot - not a very effective opener.

    Shae-Lynn had a ... um - interesting... auto-erotic number with a chair. Honestly, she pulled it off very well. The girl has the goods.

    Tanith & Ben... a silly number, not different enough to be interesting. They are not winning my heart. My bf wants to see them next year on the chance that Tanith will be skating nude. (Sorry, but that outfit... really, now.)

    And my girl Sasha... (squirms) She wasn't at her best - she fell on one jump, and that "Hurt" number gives her nothing to work with. There's no choreography to speak of. I would so much have rather seen her do God Bless America. But still I don't care what anyone says, that spiral is just one of the most beautiful things skating has to offer. It just went on and on and not one senior lady today can touch it. (I do admit Zhang does.) Anyway: she can do much better than this.

    The ensemble numbers were fun although the James Bond references were lost on my. The bf got them. It's a luxurious feeling to know that Evgeny Plushenko is doing triples in the BACKGROUND and you're too busy to look, so to speak. I felt very rich!

    I was disappointed that we didn't get to see Kimmie and Shiz for some undisclosed reason. (Something silly like final exams with Kimmie, no doubt.) Still, all in all, a delicious afternoon. Pure dessert.

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    Joey Votto Fangirl KwanFan1212's Avatar
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    Thanks for posting the review!

    And I think Kimmie is still in Japan so that would be why she wasn't there this weekend. Kimmie was competing at the Japan Open IIRC.

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    Bona Fide Member feraina's Avatar
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    Thanks for the report. I really wanted to go to the NJ show, but my bf wasn't up for it. I love Johnny, so glad he skated well! What jumps did Yvgeny do? He boasted a bunch of 3axels in an interview. Thanks for cheering on P&T. From their blog it sounded like they were home-sick/alone and didn't feel totally appreciated. I've never seen Alyssa in person. Does she have much less energy/speed than on TV? I often wonder about how TV distorts perception. Caroline, for instance, doesn't look so fast on TV, but is called "skating with quiet power and speed" by rinkside reporters, so I wonder if she looks slow just because she's so smooth and soft-kneed. If any of you gets to see her live on COI, please, please jot down a note for me! Thanks.

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    Bona Fide Member Spun Silver's Avatar
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    Oh, I forgot! Well... she would have been better off in New Jersey, doncha think?

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    On the Ice Mathman's Avatar
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    Thanks for the review, SpunSilver. I'm sorry that pang and Tong are not having a good time. I saw them a couple of years ago. I think it was their first time on the tour and they were subbing for Shen and Zhou, who were out with injury. They were outstanding and the crowd loved them. They closed the first act, as I recall. Maybe it is just the overall audience decline that is the problem.

    I think Allisa just does not have enough confidence in her jumps, and this prevents her from going all out in the other parts of her exhibition programs. Jenny Kirk was like that in COI, too. Alissa gave an outdoor exhibition in downtown Detroit at Chistmas in which she did no jumps at all, and you couldn't take your eyes off her.

    Johnny is another one that, when he is not worrying about how many CoP points he is scoring, is simply mesmerizing.

    Victor Petrenko is Mrs. MM's fave. She thinks he's hot (go figure, LOL).

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    Spectator SeaniBu's Avatar
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    Thanks for the review, NO SHI-CHAN!!!! I wonder why she didn't? I guess Kimmie had a quality excuse possibility with school work, but I wonder what happened to Shizuka?

    Anyhoo, thanks again!

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    Bona Fide Member iluvtodd's Avatar
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    Sean, Kimmie competed in the Japan Open yesterday (4/29/07) and Shizuka skated in an ice show in Japan yesterday as well.

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    I saw COI in Long Island yesterday...which was a seven hour car trip each way. But I loved it. I was in section 203--center ice, but in the higher level. (Actually, I was closer last year, but couldn't see as well. I think being in the center and a little higher up is perfect for seeing the whole picture.) They hadn't sold tickets for the highest seats--it was lodge level and one level up only--but to me it looked like a good crowd. I would estimate more than 1/3--actually I was suprised by how many people were there. It was a much larger crowd than when I saw it last year(albeit in a different venue) and IMO a much better show. I really felt enthusiastic about it, whereas last year I was feeling disappointed...

    So...I've now completed one full year of being a skating fan--last year was my first COI and my first time seeing skating live. So, I'm not claiming an expert opinion, but...

    --I loved Pang and Tong. They were amazing, and no, not just about tricks, even though they did land everything at this show. Jian Tong is a natural performer I think--I watched him a bit during the finale. The audience reaction was interesting. They got only moderate applause before they skated, and much louder applause afterwards. There was an annoying guy sitting next to me making an "oh no" sound at them, not clapping when they were announced. But even he clapped loudly after their performance.

    --Shae-Lynn is edgy and different, graceful but not in a "pretty-pretty" way. I liked both her single number and her performance in the finale--mezmerising. As a performer, I honestly think she outshone every other woman who was there yesterday.

    --Alissa and Sasha were not "on" yesterday, but they also have a skating style I wasn't getting into--a lot of grace, but not enough openness and performance. (Although Sasha is significantly better than Alissa at that). The audience seemed to share the sentiment about Alissa; but Sasha got a warm reception even when her jumps went awry, so I guess there's something there that I'm just not seeing.

    --Even though at home I watch mostly singles, I find myself liking pairs and ice dancing more in shows, at least so far. A/P--totally awesome circus show/seduction number. And yes, like Kimmie, I can say "awesome". I have never seen Marina Anissina look so gorgeous, and red suits her. They are smooth skaters, but are also clearly comfortable performing, and it projects, even several rows back. Very fun and entertaining. A similar style also suits G/P, although their magician number needs some more time to gell. Tanith and Ben were okay--I think they can do better than this, though I have no problem with Tanith's outfit.

    --Surya does not look clunky to me. She's not just a jumper, she's a performer--she knows how to project that, and I really like it. She was better than last year--not as good on the jumps, but better with the performance. I liked her in the finale, too.

    --Evgeny is not as in shape as last year. He did land his jumps. Evan outjumped him, being the only one with 3-2 combinations. Neither of them pleased me as much as most of the others there, performance-wise. They both got a decent amount of applause--and yes, they deserved it--but both of them were better last year, IMO.

    --I know Ryan Bradley is supposed to be a crowd pleaser, but that charisma was missing yesterday. Maybe it's a new program? He seemed to be half throwing away the choreography. He landed his jumps, though.

    --The "Rock Me Amadeus" number could have been a scene out of Blades of Glory. Last year, Vladimir and Alexei were just doing an acrobatic routine in which the skates were mostly inconsequential. This year, they're actually doing lifts while skating, which is pretty darn impressive, when you see what they're attempting. Alexei actually fell from one of the lifts, but he got up and continued the program. The audience loved them, and so did I. Great performance and music, too.

    --Victor Petrenko was pretty good--he was doing triples that made me hold my breath and pray, because they looked wild in the air--but he landed them. He threw his back out in the middle of his number with Victoria, and gestured for her to keep going--which she did, very well. By the end of the number he was better enough to do the final spin.

    --Rudy was fabulous. He made a couple of mistakes on his jumps, but didn't fall. He and Johnny did a fabulous clean throw 2A in the finale.

    --L/T were as beautiful as Spun Silver said. Johnny Weir was on yesterday, with no missed jumps and a much better skate, performance-wise, than he did last year. I think working with Marina paid off in that respect, because the way he was skating reaches out and grabs the audience. It's ironic--last year I had huge expectations of him and came away disappointed; this year, I wasn't expecting much, and was impressed. Fallen Angels was wonderful, and earned a partial standing ovation from people around me(plus me, of course), even though these same people were going "what?" when the names were announced. The people around me did not know who Melissa and Dennis were...

    --Dan Hollander was entertaining in the moment, but forgettable enough that I nearly left him out of the report. Still, he landed his jumps, and was a nice addition to what turned out to be an excellent show.

    --I missed seeing Shizuka and Kimmie. Irina Grigorean also was not there, but since I had been dreading her numbers after reading other reports, I was glad for that.

    --What with the Fallen Angels number and Victor's number with his daughter, I didn't feel like the show was too short, or undercast. For me, it was worth the money and the drive. (Sorry I keep emphasizing that, but there seems to be a lot of doom and gloom in some reports, and I feel otherwise pretty strongly).

    ETA: There was a noticable difference between the side I was sitting on and the people sitting on the opposite side of the ice. The people on the other side were being more "vocally demonstrative" and my side was more into the "clap as loudly as possible but don't do anything but clap" idea. We loosened up as the show went on. From where I was sitting, the loudest applause went to Rudy, J/G/P, and the acrobats. A lady in front of me gave standing ovations twice--to the J/G/P Fallen Angels and to the acrobats.
    Last edited by debdelilah; 04-30-2007 at 04:08 PM.

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    Idita-Rock-n-Roll Tonichelle's Avatar
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    I have to admit Evan, the anti-Johnny, was also good. The guy can dance and his black wristbands were very effective when he was spinning. My bf had the gall to prefer him and Evgeny to Johnny.
    good for him!

    Fallen Angels was wonderful, and earned a partial standing ovation from people around me(plus me, of course), even though these same people were going "what?" when the names were announced. The people around me did not know who Melissa and Dennis were...
    Unfortunately that is what keeps them from just being full fledged cast members on COI. Because Ice Dance is the least popular in this country and they are teh silver medalists, they aren't shoved in our faces like Tanith and Ben - which sucks, but what can ya do?
    Last edited by Tonichelle; 04-30-2007 at 10:59 AM.

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    Spectator SeaniBu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by iluvtodd View Post
    Sean, Kimmie competed in the Japan Open yesterday (4/29/07) and Shizuka skated in an ice show in Japan yesterday as well.
    DUH SEAN. Somebody slap me!!!! I guess I missed the sarcasm in the review or forgot as well.

    Quote Originally Posted by Spun Silver View Post
    I was disappointed that we didn't get to see Kimmie and Shiz for some undisclosed reason. (Something silly like final exams with Kimmie, no doubt.) Still, all in all, a delicious afternoon.
    "undisclosed" has been disclosed, thanks Gail!

    They could have said something at the show though..... Nope! That would be a violation of and ISU regulation. I guess that is why they said nothing about their absence.

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    Just wanted to thank folks for their reviews. I'm not going to get to see COI this year, so these reviews are most welcome. Thanks to everyone!

  12. #12
    Bona Fide Member Spun Silver's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by debdelilah View Post
    --Shae-Lynn is edgy and different, graceful but not in a "pretty-pretty" way. I liked both her single number and her performance in the finale--mezmerising. As a performer, I honestly think she outshone every other woman who was there yesterday.
    My bf would agree with that. He really liked her and contrasted her w/Sasha, saying "you don't look at Sasha for who she is," ie she is not a magnet for the eye like Shae-Lynn, but rather you watch her for what she does on the ice.

    In answer to the person who asked for details about Alissa, no, she wasn't slow. It was more a problem with dull choreography, jump problems, and just lack of projection.

    --Surya does not look clunky to me. She's not just a jumper, she's a performer--she knows how to project that, and I really like it. She was better than last year--not as good on the jumps, but better with the performance. I liked her in the finale, too.
    I agree that she's a great performer but didn't you find her actual movement between jumps slow and ... a bit labored?
    --The "Rock Me Amadeus" number could have been a scene out of Blades of Glory.
    That's exactly right!!!

    --Victor Petrenko ... was threw his back out in the middle of his number with Victoria, and gestured for her to keep going--which she did, very well. By the end of the number he was better enough to do the final spin.
    That was a stunt - and a classic one, if you've seen operas like Tales of Hoffman or Barber of Seville. He was just kidding. He did the same routine in NJ.

    --Rudy was fabulous. He made a couple of mistakes on his jumps, but didn't fall. He and Johnny did a fabulous clean throw 2A in the finale.
    I simply cannot believe I forgot about that and missed it completely! Rats, rats, RATS!!!

    --What with the Fallen Angels number and Victor's number with his daughter, I didn't feel like the show was too short, or undercast. For me, it was worth the money and the drive.
    I agree. Well, we didn't have to go far, and if I had a choice I'd go to a competition instead, but my bf would certainly attest that I enjoyed it. He got a kick out of my "glee" (which began about a week before the performance).

    Also, about the money: we got some of the cheapest seats ($65) but I was thrilled with them. We were toward one end about 20 feet from the cast entrance, 7 rows from the ice. A bit of our view was blocked by props (the ice cubes) but we barely missed anything since most of the action was elsewhere. I was really glad to know that you can see the show well w/o spending $100 each. And the Ticketron charges were even reasonable ($7 each, IIRC).

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    The more I read about the show, the more I am excited to see it this weekend. I'm not normally a Pang and Tong fan but now that I hear they're feeling underappreciated,, I'll have to be sure and cheer for them, Chinese pair fangirl that I am.

  14. #14
    Spectator doubleaxel's Avatar
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    Looks like we did go to the same COI, Spun Silver.

    Here's my little review (that was also posted in some other forums a few days ago):

    I thought it was a fantastic show this year! Except the dramatic music in the end was really loud and skaters were everywhere, so it was hard to focus on anyone particular in the final group performance. I think I've earned a headache for myself from that. Though otherwise, I couldn't have enjoyed it more! Luckily, we had first row seats, it was great (cost like $160 or something, but it was certainly worth the price) .

    Basically there was everyone (except Irina, Shizuka, Michelle, and Kimmie), including Alissa Csizny, Evan Lysacek, Pang & Tong (she is a stick figure! ), and Ryan Bradley.

    Sasha fell on her triple salchow (I think it was a salchow, I don't really remember) though landed a double axel beautifully. This was the second time I've seen her skate live, and I thought her skating was even more gorgeous than on TV. Sasha always had a smile on her face. I've never watched "Hurt" before, and I think it's a great program for Sasha to do in COI. I didn't take a lot of pictures of her since I wanted to enjoy the performance, but here are some:

    I-Spin
    Spiral
    Charlotte
    Sasha got lots of applause

    I was slightly surprised that not much people cheered for Johnny (or maybe, just not as much as I had expected). He was wonderful, and skated to "All Love is Fair" as his solo piece, and the beautiful "Fallen Angels" with Gregory and Petkuhov. I got some pics though they're not very good. 1 2 3

    Evgeny Plushenko was fantastic. He did a new program that I've never seen before, and landed, I believe, two triple axels and several double axels, along with many triples (mostly toes). Victor Petrenko skated with his 9-year-old daughter to a tango number, and it was adorable. I also found it cute how Tanith was watching Evan while he was performing his solo piece. Evan's program was entertaining, but I enjoyed Plushenko's more than anyone's.

    I also thought Alissa skated great, I've never paid much attention to her before BUT I now know that she has beautiful lines and is a wonderful spinner. She skated to Anytime, Anywhere.

    There were also lots of funny, and even scary performances such as that of the two acrobats, Besedin and Polishchuck (sp?). Seriously, the lift things they did were pretty insane. Tanith Belbin and Ben had a very interesting number (not gonna' explain any further!).

    I really enjoyed this show, and I definitely recommend COI to everyone who hadn't been there before. I liked it better than the one I went to last year, even (great costumes and lots of modern tunes!).

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    Bona Fide Member Spun Silver's Avatar
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    Great review, doublea.
    ETA: Nice pix but FWIW they make Sasha look considerably heavier than she was! I don't know why that happens.

    One other comment about The Golden One: In addition to the jumps and spins, he did some fantastic footwork. A lot of it! I'm tellin' ya, he was ON. Furthermore, he was the only guy who did any footwork to speak of. Now why would that be?
    Last edited by Spun Silver; 04-30-2007 at 01:20 PM.

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