In ice dance, as in competitive ballroom dancing, I always hear that the role of the man is to "present" the woman in all her glory. Presumably this means that the man is supposed to stay in the background and not call too much attention to himself.
To me, some couples do this and some don't. Which dance and pairs teams would you say fit into the following categories?
(a) The man presents the woman, while not calling inappropriate attention to himself.
(b) It is an equal partnership.
(c) The man is the stronger partner and attracts a lot of attention in his own right.
(d) One or the other steals the show from his/her partner.
In category (d) I would put Fusar-Poli and Margaglio. Barbara F-P pretty much presents herself without much help from her partner.
In category (c), do you think Torville and Dean were like this? Certainly Christopher Dean is regarded as the creative genius behind this partnership. Did that show on the ice?
For people in competiton now, I would say that Benjamin Agosto is more the focal point than Tanith Belbin. But that might be only because he was deliberately the center of attention in their Elvis routine last year (especially in the exhibition version).
Another example is Chait and Sakhnovsky. Sakhnovsky has such a striking physical presence that he draws the eye more than his partner does, IMO.
For category (b), the equal partnership, I think of pair skaters Bereshnaya and Sikharulidze. Also of my personal favorites, Watanabe and Kido.
In category (a), the traditional "man presents the woman," I would say Sale and Pelletier, Bourne and Kraatz, and Punsalan and Swallow. Also perhaps Shen and Zhou. What a great moment when he gallantly stood back and applauded his partner at the end of their Worlds free skate!