Skating is art, if you let it be.
SP - East of Eden (2001)
LP - Aranjuez (2003)
Exhibition - Fields of Gold (2002), specifically at the Olympics
After watching her fantastic performances at Ice All Stars, I think that it's a good time to join the Michelle Kwan gush thread
SP: 1998 Rachmaninoff at US Nationals; 2005 Spartacus at US Nationals (mainly because of the spiral sequence there)
LP: Salome at 1996 Worlds; the Red Violin at 2000 Worlds
EX: Fields of Gold at 2002 Olympics, for obvious reasons
She is truly amazing! I love her Carmina Burana and Winter Song!
Her best Free
Salome 96 Worlds LP
Lyra Angelica 98 US Nationals LP
Ariane 98 World Pros LP
The Red Violin 00' Worlds LP
Song of the Black Swan 01 Worlds LP
Scheherazade 02 US Nationals
Aranjuez 03' Worlds and Nationals
Tosca 04' US Nationals
For the SP
Romanza: Worlds 96
Rachmaninoff Nationals 98
Carmen 99 US Nationals
East of Eden 01 US Nationals and Worlds
The Feeling Begins 03' Worlds and Nationals
Sparctacus 05' US Nationals
Song of the Black Swan, 2001 Worlds, is the one that stays with me most, for some reason.
Black Swan, indeed
Song of the Black Swan is a favorite of mine both for the skating and the music. The Dvorak trio that makes up most of it is a gorgeous piece, both joyous and mysterious. The made-in-Heaven blend of Lori Nichol's choreography and Michelle's technique and interpretation brings me right into the music. The fact that she did the only triple-triple among the top ladies and took the gold that day is almost incidental in comparison to the effect the skating has on me!
Another piece I hadn't seen for awhile and looked up the other day is the Lament of Ariane.I don't love the music quite as deeply, but Michelle's skating is a marvel to behold. She makes everyone else look half-finished by comparison. Isn't it interesting that we remember nearly all her pieces by the music instead of "the 2001 Worlds long program"? That says something about what Kwan did for skating.
And I agree with those of you who said that the piece she just skated is a favorite...for its own sake and for the joy of seeing her skating again!
Gotta Have Music
Competitively - Salome - 1996 Worlds, but I also love Lyra Angelica (1998 Nationals)
East of Eden, Winter, Hands, Dante's Prayer, and Pocahontas - love them all!
Last edited by iluvtodd; 09-17-2009 at 05:54 AM.
I love every long program from 96-01, and she nailed them all at least one, so it's hard to pick just one. The Red Violin from 99 Skate Canada wins artistically, hands down. So many nuances, such haunting music.
Hmmm, for best overall performance, I'll go with 2000 and 2001 Worlds. They were both power-Kwan performances.
For the short program? 2002 Skate America, The Feeling Begins. Another powerful skate, her jumps looked a bit bigger than usually, it was fresh, she moved with greater freedom than before. Pure awesomeness.
Mr. Michelle Kwan
Fields of Gold, 2002 Olympics exhibition. Lovely in so many ways.
Thank God for Stephane Lambiel and Matt Savoie!
1998 US Nationals LP.
Also loved her Dream of Desdamona SP from the 96 Ultimate Four (her best performance to her best short program ever, IMO), D'Arianne LP from 1998 World Pros, and The Red Violin from 1999 Skate America. I really loved most of her stuff from 1996 to 2001.
Last edited by shine; 09-15-2009 at 10:30 PM.
Figure Skating Is A Dangerous Sport
I have a video of her at 12 or 13 I think, possibly even younger with long skinny legs and arms. Every now and then I put the tape in to watch this child that looks like a little colt trying to take its' first steps...and then I put a later tape in and it is just awesome to see how beautiful this child grew into an artist.
Originally Posted by Kwanford Wife
I know, right? She had sparkle even then... And that's why I struggle so much with the newbies... none have that sparkle that demands being watched.
Originally Posted by Dee4707
And this isn't a Kwan gush (well, with me its always a Kwan gush fest...) - Sasha had that quality, NNN did as well. BeBe had it and still does - but rooting for her has become too painful.
Who since then? They are either jumping machines, bendy straws or have interesting back stories that doesn't match up with the actual skating. Or they shine for half a season and then its all over...
Oh well. I'm probably just spoiled *shrugs*
I agree that we were spoiled during those years. Of course I'm biased toward Kwan, but I also have to mention the longevity of several other skaters, including Slutskaya and Cohen. The result was that we got to see several instances of the creative arc of kids becoming mature artists, which is always a pleasure and which doesn't regularly occur in singles skating, especially ladies' singles.
Kwan's work particularly stays in our mind like the works of great artists in other fields. Every Fred Astaire fan can cite favorite dances: the Dancing in the Dark duet with Cyd Charisse, Let's Face the Music and Dance with Ginger, the jazz clarinet version of Begin the Beguine with Eleanor Powell. The same is true in ballet. In skating, this is less common. Other skaters whom I associate with this are Kurt Browning and Torville and Dean. But with most other skaters, what we remember is the medals they won, not what they skated to in order to win them.
I know that a lot of you (I as well) can supply the names of other skaters of whom this is true. The point is that if you make a list of such names, you'd have to put Michelle's on it, whether you're an uber-fan of hers or not. That's quite a legacy to leave!