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Thread: Are the most artistic skaters naturally inclined?

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    Are the most artistic skaters naturally inclined?

    Are skaters who are known as the most musical and artistic just naturally born that way or was it learnt via ballet? eg. Oksana Baiul, Lu Chen, Yu-Na Kim, Michelle Kwan, Alissa Czizny. Personally, I think they all had a natural grace to their skating. Ballet may have enhanced their naturalness. I think skaters who don't have it naturally can take ballet, but still their movements don't look natural. In really bad cases, it's like you take ballet? (eg. Mira Leung)

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    Beliver in Sasha's Perfect Program Tinymavy15's Avatar
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    Well it's pretty much you have it or you don't. Michelle Kwan was not really atistic when she was a 15-year old kid at her first nationals, but she had a good strong pressence on the ice and had nice fluidity. With the help of Lori Nichol and some makeup she was transformed into the sensual Salome. through the years she grew in making her skating more expressive and relating to the chreogaphy and music. Other skaters such as Sasha Cohen and Naomi nari Nam are clearly born with the gift of performing. True, they may have taken dance class from childhood but they express the music without trying and and perform down to the tips of thier toes. Bottom line, artistry can be improved upon and bettered by dance training and working with good chrographers, but for it to really show, to be truly artistic you have to be that way from within.

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    Custom Title Joesitz's Avatar
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    I don't see why it has to be ballet to enhance a gifted child. When the Russian maestro,Ballanchine left St.Petes and eventually came to the US, he instituted the School of the American Ballet, and told his students to study Tap Dancing to get some rhythm.

    IMO, Nam never had rhythm and Sasha finally got it in Torino.

    The youngster Kwan had the rhythm and then developed style and later still nuances which others have copied. She was unique.

    Joe

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    Michelle Kwan was not really atistic when she was a 15-year old kid at her first nationals, but she had a good strong pressence on the ice and had nice fluidity.
    Michelle certainly was artistic at 15, when she bested the reigning WC, Lulu at Worlds. I agree that at 13, 14 she was more jumping bean, but still had the "star" quality, that "it" factor that drew her audience to her.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MKFSfan View Post
    Michelle certainly was artistic at 15, when she bested the reigning WC, Lulu at Worlds. I agree that at 13, 14 she was more jumping bean, but still had the "star" quality, that "it" factor that drew her audience to her.
    It's pretty interesting that you saw the it factor in her when she was just 13 and 14. I didn't. I thought she was a thorough, methodical, and disciplined skater back then. However, I didn't see even the tiniest spark of artistry.

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    Quote Originally Posted by krenseby View Post
    It's pretty interesting that you saw the it factor in her when she was just 13 and 14. I didn't. I thought she was a thorough, methodical, and disciplined skater back then. However, I didn't see even the tiniest spark of artistry.

    Which makes it all the more exciting to see young skaters that do have the "it" factor like Caroline Zhang or Mirai Nagasu. Caroline in particular, has it naturally.

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    Custom Title Joesitz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by krenseby View Post
    It's pretty interesting that you saw the it factor in her when she was just 13 and 14. I didn't. I thought she was a thorough, methodical, and disciplined skater back then. However, I didn't see even the tiniest spark of artistry.
    The way you put it, is that artistry can only be defined by you. Nothing wrong with that, everhyone has an opinion, but I would change the word artistry to the word taste in your case. The word artistry is tossed around so much in the forum when the poster really means opinion.

    In my case, and I am not perfect, I hesitate to use the word artistry. I do see budding artistry in Yu Na, Caroline Z, and a few other tykes and awaiting to see how well they fared when they will have reached 20.

    For the young Kwan, I saw a crude skater with great stroking and rhythm who later developed into a first rate artistic skater.

    Joe

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    Custom Title dwiggin3's Avatar
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    I guess I'm in the minority....I never felt Sasha's expression or grace was natural - I felt it was learned and contrived at times. Yes, she is flexible but I felt her artistic side was more acting that natural talent. Oh well.

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    Forum translator Ptichka's Avatar
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    I think it often takes a gifted coach/ choreographer to bring out the person's natural artistry. Take Yagudin - his style is unique and comes from inside. However, until he came to Tarasova, he was was known for jumping, not for artistry. It took TT to help him dig deep inside and bring out the artistry.

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    Custom Title Joesitz's Avatar
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    Well said and I agree.

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    I think you have to be born with the ability to really hear music to become a great artist. Ballet and other dance training will help you to express music, but in order to express it, you have to be able to hear it in the first place. By "hearing" I mean hearing all the little nuances that are usually in great pieces of music.
    Last edited by all that; 07-11-2007 at 10:54 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Joesitz View Post
    The way you put it, is that artistry can only be defined by you. Nothing wrong with that, everhyone has an opinion, but I would change the word artistry to the word taste in your case. The word artistry is tossed around so much in the forum when the poster really means opinion.

    In my case, and I am not perfect, I hesitate to use the word artistry. I do see budding artistry in Yu Na, Caroline Z, and a few other tykes and awaiting to see how well they fared when they will have reached 20.

    For the young Kwan, I saw a crude skater with great stroking and rhythm who later developed into a first rate artistic skater.

    Joe

    I think the word "Artistry" comes from international judgers.
    Absolutely the "taste" depends to personal, but the artistry is not. The judgers can see it and love it unanimously. Anyway, it would be better to have the feel to discern the differences.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Joesitz View Post
    The way you put it, is that artistry can only be defined by you. Nothing wrong with that, everhyone has an opinion, but I would change the word artistry to the word taste in your case. The word artistry is tossed around so much in the forum when the poster really means opinion.

    In my case, and I am not perfect, I hesitate to use the word artistry. I do see budding artistry in Yu Na, Caroline Z, and a few other tykes and awaiting to see how well they fared when they will have reached 20.

    For the young Kwan, I saw a crude skater with great stroking and rhythm who later developed into a first rate artistic skater.

    Joe
    Well, obviously what I see as artistry as dependent on my point of view... But still, just because the presence or absence of artistry of any given skater is in the eyes of the beholder, it doesn't mean that I am not entitled to share my opinion about Kwan's artistry at a young age. So you do agree that young Kwan was a crude skater?

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    Beliver in Sasha's Perfect Program Tinymavy15's Avatar
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    I would not say that Kwan was "crude" as a girl. She was certainly no worse than any of the other ladies of that time. Musical interpritation had not reached the extent of today in competition... besides Lu Chen i can't think of any other lady then or beofre that really was so much better in artisty. michelle was not what she was later, she skated like a very good 14 year old.

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    Custom Title Joesitz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by beritaz View Post
    I think the word "Artistry" comes from international judgers.
    Absolutely the "taste" depends to personal, but the artistry is not. The judgers can see it and love it unanimously. Anyway, it would be better to have the feel to discern the differences.
    I have never read where judges speak of artistry. If one does, I would question it anyway, and it is not an every day description of little boys and girls. Da Vinci was a talented boy who later became a great artist among other things. I can not put a figure skater in that same light. Sorry. For some reason, fans enjoy tossing around this adverb as if were divinely inspired, and not just personal taste.

    Joe

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