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Thread: Skating as art

  1. #106
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    I don't care for either, but Bezic is worse. But honestly, given what all three contributed to the sport, it's a minor complaint.

  2. #107
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    Quote Originally Posted by ImaginaryPogue View Post
    I don't care for either, but Bezic is worse. But honestly, given what all three contributed to the sport, it's a minor complaint.
    Geez, I might be the only poster here who likes Dick, Scott and Sandra.

    I love so many of the programs Sandra created and when the day comes that I believe I know MORE about skating than Dick, Scott or Sandra I will, as is my nature feel free to criticize them.

    But I know that day is not coming anytime soon.

    I think skating like most other things has a few problems that need some fixing.
    On my list of priorities of what would be best for skating Scott and Sandra's commentrary would be far, far down on the list.

  3. #108
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    actually very few here do not worship at the House of the Rusty Hoot...

  4. #109
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    Well, it is possible to criticize someone's skills as a television broadcaster, no matter how much they know about skating. Sandy Koufax was the worst baseball commentator of all time -- he didn't have the gift of gab.

    Toni, yes, Dick Button is getting more and more crotchety and forgetful. So am I. You will have to wait your turn.

    What I like about Scott Hamilton's commentary is the same thing that I don't like. He is so exuberant that he doesn't really give the audience the benefit of his critical knowledge like he could. It's all -- oh, wow, that was the greatest triple toe in the history of skating!

    Buit that's nit-picking. He loves skaters and skating, cheers when they do well, gives support when they don't. "OK, this skater was in last place after the short program, but if she can just hit this triple...awwww. Well, here she goes for her double....awwww...AWWWWWW."

    Listening to Sandra Bezik's commentary was my first introduction to choreography. She had more to say about music and the type of movement that it calls for than any of the others.

  5. #110
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tonichelle View Post
    NBC did the 88 games... pretty sure anyway... Pretty sure it was their group of commentators that covered the Jamacian Bobsled Team... and 88 was when the current NBC Olympic theme was born.


    (I'm not a fan of Button, the older he gets the meaner he gets - for no good reason - and I get tired of him flubbing on jump calls and being abusive with words to his collegues when they dare to disagree)
    Toni, the reason I think ABC did the 88 Olympics is a small smidge of interview that I remember, and I could certainly be wrong. But after Debi Thomas kind of fell apart during the long program and didn't even get the silver, she got the bronze, it fell to Peggy to interview her. I remember Debi just barely holding it together, and saying with a wounded attempt at flippancy, "Anyone want to trade an Olympic pin for a bronze medal?" Peggy's job was obviously to ask her questions off the order of "What was going through your mind when...."--but instead, she just put her microphone aside and gave Debi a hug. You couldn't pay me to criticize Peggy after that classy response to Debi's obvious anguish.

    I don't remember who talked about the Jamaican bobsled team, so your memory could easily be much more accurate than mine on this point. But I'm sticking with ABC on the strength of what I recall about the post-competition interview of Debi.

  6. #111
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    Toni, yes, Dick Button is getting more and more crotchety and forgetful. So am I. You will have to wait your turn.
    Tearing down the skaters is one thing - most actually like his critical eye, though only admit it years later in their book - it's when he beats up on his fellow "experts" because they dared to speak before him, or differently than him. Peggy Flemming once said she was scared of him, but she still sounds so intimidated several decades later. Kurt Browning is the only one I can think of that let Dick do his little berating and then basically continued with his own expert analysis. The others just seem to go, oh, yeah, well, okay. I remember standing up and applauding during Skate America when Kurt didn't back down to Mr. Button, but was very gracious and respectful at the same time.

    In all honesty I like Kurt's style... it reminds me, in some ways, of Button's in terms of what we see on the ice. It's knowledgeable on both sides (technical and presentation) and he doesn't mince words either, but he LOVES skating you can tell. He cheers for skaters, but not overly so. It's a good balance. I wish NBC would allow him another chance.

  7. #112
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    Olympia - I stand corrected. I looked it up. The Winter games were on ABC... NBC had the Summer games (where the current theme came from, John Williams [star wars, indiana jones, jurassic park, schindler's list, harry potter...] composed it). But for some reason I still have the NBC team talking about the Jamacian team... I don't know where that comes from

  8. #113
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tonichelle View Post
    In all honesty I like Kurt's style... it reminds me, in some ways, of Button's in terms of what we see on the ice. It's knowledgeable on both sides (technical and presentation) and he doesn't mince words either, but he LOVES skating you can tell. He cheers for skaters, but not overly so. It's a good balance. I wish NBC would allow him another chance.
    You know how I feel about Kurt, in every aspect of his skating life. I think you're right that he's growing more and more assured as a commentator. It would be great to see him more often, and that could certainly happen in the future.

  9. #114
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    Art or sport? Why not mix them up?

  10. #115
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    Quote Originally Posted by Olympia View Post
    You know how I feel about Kurt, in every aspect of his skating life. I think you're right that he's growing more and more assured as a commentator. It would be great to see him more often, and that could certainly happen in the future.
    I dunno, IF NBCSports ever forgives him for the "flub" in 94 we might see him... for now he's all Canada's...

    I loved it when he did nationals in 2006, he was HYSTERICAL during warm ups and commercial breaks. He spotted Scott Hamilton in the audience at one of the practice sessions and started screaming "Scooter!!!!" Scott was really annoyed because a huge group of young girls went straight for where he was in the crowd. Kurt sold him out!

    Kurt also would start teh WAVE around the arena waiting for the commercial breaks to end. Total clown. Loved it!

  11. #116
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    I grew up with skating since the late 40s and I have never cared what network was covering the Olympics. It was never an issue - but the skating was. News of Button's triumph at wherever the Olympics were and his subsequent winning two of the European Championships were fascinating in newspapers.

    I reiterate that competitive skating in America became more popular when 1) the Big Shows were declining; and 2) the advent of TV's World Wide of Sports showed how competitive skating was a Sport. It was covered in newspapers and magazines as Sport. Those giddy immature competitions on TV Sunday afternoons didn't go over well in the sports world, and competitive skating took a back seat in sports in the print media. Praise to be for Hersch for hanging around.

    However, Dick Button kept the sport alive with his commentary on Worlds and Olys. If he is retired or retiring, it will be a great loss.

  12. #117
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    The number of rotations is in the mind of the beholder. I went to a local club show featuring performers of all ages and skill levels. I took copious notes of each element, the swifter to rush back to my keyboard and shoot off a report to Golden Skate. Almost all of the higher level performers did outstanding double Axels.

    The next poster wrote, dear Mathman, no one in that show did a double Axel. They were all singles. Expect headliner Yuka Sato, who, by the way, did a double toe loop as her other jump, not a triple flip. (My excuse in the case of Sato -- my eyes were all teary from having been overborn by the strains of Amazing Grace.)
    Which is why the casual viewer finds it hard to get heavily into the technical judgments, in my view; for most, even the "simplest" calls happen faster than the eye can catch, at the time it actually happens.

    Off tpic: May I say, that was beautifully paragraphed?
    Thanks, Mathman. I try to live by the credo that good form is not limited to skating (but, like skaters, only with partial success. The act of strapping thin pieces of metal to your feet, in an attempt to be Wonder Woman and Gelsey Kirkland rolled into one, seems to me fertile ground for extracting moral homilies (only a few of which are printable). I've thought about writing a self-help book, maybe with Kristi Yamaguchi as co-author, titled: "Getting Off Your Butt: How To Make Failure Work For You").

    Such a trivial matter, and yet...(When you mention both epistemology and metaphysics in the same sentence, that paragraph had better be only one sentence long. )
    I hear ya, but it's hard when the words are entire paragraphs by themselves .

    One tiny detail to add about what most viewers are able to see and evaluate on the technical side -- falling down is a negative.
    Yes, there is that. I was trying to accentuate the positive aspects of "obviously spectacular to the naked eye in real time".

    OK, one more tiny detail. I think in the case of truly jaw-dropping spinners, like Stephane Lambiel, the audience can notice that something out of the ordinary is going on. In my opinion, this can't happen any more. Under CoP the skaters are too busy counting how many revolutions they are doing on each edge of each foot in how many ungainly positions.

    I don't know what I think about that. Gkelly has convinced me that this makes the sport more sporty because only the best technicians can do it.
    I'm also of two minds on the multi-position spins. I understand the argument from athletic difficulty, but, on the other hand, it often has a labored, perfunctory feel, like being forced to recite the multiplication tables in front of the class. You've done all the sevens, now on to the eights and nines...

  13. #118
    she takes the audience on her journey of emotions Layfan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hernando View Post
    Geez, I might be the only poster here who likes Dick, Scott and Sandra.

    I love so many of the programs Sandra created and when the day comes that I believe I know MORE about skating than Dick, Scott or Sandra I will, as is my nature feel free to criticize them.

    But I know that day is not coming anytime soon.

    I think skating like most other things has a few problems that need some fixing.
    On my list of priorities of what would be best for skating Scott and Sandra's commentrary would be far, far down on the list.
    No, I like them too Scott definitely goes over the top in this enthisiam sometimes and overall I preferred the Dick/Peggy team... both had their good and bad moments. But overall I appreciate all four for the same reasons you do.

    It's great whenever I get to hear Kurt's commentary. I wish I could more often I agree he has presence, insight sympathy and credibility without any over the top gushing.

  14. #119
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    Generally speaking, the problem with some of the TV commentators is they often don't read the research, don't know the rules, depend too much on the element sheets, and don't watch the practices.

  15. #120
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    Quote Originally Posted by KKonas View Post
    Generally speaking, the problem with some of the TV commentators is they often don't read the research, don't know the rules, depend too much on the element sheets, and don't watch the practices.
    I've been to US Nationals and Scott Hamilton's there through the whole thing, most days.

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