RE: Russian ice dance
Russian ice dance needs to change with the rest of the world. Back when Russian dancers seemed invincible, many teams adapted their style to suit the Russian style of dance. Sure, there were unique teams (Rakhamo/Kokko, Torvill/Dean), but they were still somewhat influenced by the style. The first North American dancers to win worlds "Russified" their style.
I like B/S, but watching their FD, I felt like I was watching an old Soviet FD. I didn't dislike it, but they seem behind the times somewhat.
B/S were just boring though. So boring. The music was a snooze. I mean two seasons ago they had that opera and were not even watchable. I forgot their biggest problem which is that his twizzles are done but are so bad.
Last edited by gmyers; 05-23-2011 at 06:40 PM.
Dance is going to be interesting with Faiella/Scali back. I think the frontrunners will be V/M and D/W still, and V/M may take their world title back if they can train at full capacity and do more competitions before worlds this season. It'll be interesting to see who will take bronze at worlds, and I think it will be a fight between Faiella/Scali and Pechalat/Bourzat. I really hope P/B can finally get a world medal since they've been knocking at the door so long and that fall was kind of a freak accident at this year's worlds. I think with F/S back and if P/B are in their best form, the Shibutanis will not medal again at the worlds, but will stay in the top 5 probably. I'm hoping W/P can stay in the top 5, or even medal (I don't think so though for the medal), but they've got close competition with Ilinykh/Katsalapov and Bobrova/Soloviev, and possibly Crone/Poirier if they skate better and Samuelson/Bates if they come back at top notch and qualify for the worlds. Oh yeah, Russia will also have three spots so Riazanova/Tkachenko will probably be in there too, unless Khokhlova and Andreev get sent instead. It's going to be interesting to see what S/B are like and if they will be able to tkae a worlds spot back from Chock/Zuerlein (I'm thinking they probably can).
In the context of PCS, when you look back at the last Olympic cycle and examine the growth of PCS scores by D/W and V/M both within and across seasons, there was marked improvement each year. They were on par with more senior teams in TES almost from the beginning, so as their PCS improved and the their elements became cleaner and more difficult, they caught up to and eventually surpassed their rivals. Given that Marina and Igor are so meticulous in their training, I expect similar growth from the Shibs.
Back to the 80's
I think the Shibs should be looked at through a slightly different prism. Three teams from way back that no one has mentioned who could serve as really good role models for the Shibs were Wilson/McCall, Blumberg/Seibert and early Klimova/Ponomarenko. They did not traffic in explicitly romantic dances (even K/P pre-88 as newlyweds), but used cheekiness, humor, energy, excitement and absolute technical brilliance to make themselves stand out amongst all the high drama of T/D and B/B. Tracy and Rob were excellent technically but more for their actual blades on the ice skating and less for their dramatic lifts. Marina and Sergei were so good, you never had to worry that they would fail to deliver an excellent skate. In fact, the chief criticism of them for years was that they should have actually tapped their off-ice marriage to inject more heat into their dances. Still, their quality was so undeniably good, that they were either 1st or 2nd at worlds for and astounding 8 years. Judy and Michael perhaps resembled the Shibs the most of these teams. They had smooth as butter edges, flow for days and an ease that just made you smile. I think Alex and Maia could very well mold themselves in that way in order to develop a long term senior style.
No one can accurately claim that W/McC or B/S ever skated a truly romantic dance, for somewhat obvious reasons. Yet they creatively choreographed their routines to maximize their strengths and minimize their weaknesses. I think the Shibs can definitely tap that well to their own advantage. Remember, not all dancing has to be super sexy or raunchy to be good. This is not Dancing with the Stars. (I write this as my jaw is on the floor b/c Mark Ballas and his partner COMPLETELY RIPPED OFF V/M's opening to their free dance for their samba during tonight's finals. Down to the costumes.)
See examples of my points below.
'86 Worlds (3rd)
'88 Olympics OSP and FD (3rd)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o6ffI31sMTw (an example of how to do a tango NOT meant to smolder)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GWO4eG_EwG8 (such a happy memory...RIP Rob)
'85 Worlds (2nd)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E_vE5sCkPac (A clinic on the multi-rhythm format of ice dance)
'86 Worlds (2nd)
'87 Worlds (2nd)
'88 Olympics (2nd)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=acXA7...eature=related (even though Uncle Dick presents this dance in a romantic framework, it could easily be slightly re-choreographed to suit a bro/sis team like the Shibs)
Maybe some of us are underrating the Shibutanis but I think it is way over the top to call them locked into a medal from now on or fighting with V/M and D/W on top already. Even if their scores improve alot that would at best put them on par with a normal P/B considering P/B would have blown them away by about 8 points this year without their disaester.
Pogue , I love it when you start one of these ! You've got it all so nicely organized , it helps keep me on track...sometimes I need that... I saw this this morning and have been wanting to get a chance to respond all day.It's been a wild ride in Ice Dance this year, but I don't see things letting up for next year ( although I hope we won't see so many wrinkles due to injury )It's like we bought a roll of tickets and don't even have to get off the rollercoaster in between.
I'm going to begin with the Canadians, since they happen to be in my thoughts at the moment.
V/M -If they are really fully back ( crossing all appendages ), we've seen how they can knock a Latin theme out of the park , and I'm expecting a FD that is nothing less than spectacular from them. ( Friendship is a wonderful thing , but Scott freely admits to preferring the top of the podium )I expect the ante will be upped.
W/P-I agree , must be enjoying a phenomenal boost in confidence.They achieved their goal , which their detractors wrote off as unrealistic . They must know that many observers felt they should have been placed above the Shibs in the SD , and if they had been.... well ,it must be thrilling and inspiring to know how close they came to being on the podium. I'm sure they'll continue to work hard. I hope some very serious thought will go into their new programs , particularly the FD.( I don't think Latin will be a problem for them ) I really think they have to be considered Canada's de facto second team , in spite of last year's national results, since the World placement was no squeaker between them and C/P...as has already been pointed out.
C/P-Must still be in shock , and I don't know what they'll do. I, too ,think a coaching change is in order, but don't know if that will be recognized. They still have the same problems in carriage and posture ( not to mention packaging ) that they had when they came up from Juniors ( problems shared by L/R's two next most visible teams ,R/H and O/H ) and in 2 yrs. there's been little or no improvement. So although I used to hope for it , I don't think this school is going to buckle down and make the necessary changes to their regimen in order to be able to live up to their own PR ( Ice Dance Elite ) . Or , even if the shock they recieved at this year's Nationals ( in R/H 's finish ) and World's ( in C/P's finish) is finally enough to make them see the light , their skaters have had 2 yrs. of their careers slip by without progressing. And a major change in their regimen will pay off over time, not instantly. If C/P and R/H had started to get the help they obviously needed two years ago..we could be looking at a different situation . But in the short time between now and next season ? Without a coaching change ? No.
P/I - last fall I would have predicted ( in fact , I think I did ) that they might be able to pass C/P in 2 yrs. ,unless C/P failed to progress. But now ,I think all bets are off.Because this team does not stand still.They have no major flaw to overcome. They seem to be able to identify what they need to work on and how to go about getting the help they need. They were already knocking on the door ,technically speaking , last year, and are equally promising in the performance aspects. I'm eager to see what programs they come up with. If they have a good GP, I think C/P are in serious trouble come the 2012 nationals. The door will be open.I don't think Skate Canada will want to seem to be so firmly in any of these team's corner from the outset ,as they did this year.
( Always excepting ,of course , VM.)
Colleen - Your dislike of C/P is endless and nauseating. They did have some great results this season, but unfortunatley had some problems at the finish. The bonus of their unfortunate worlds though, has been that your constant criticism of them diminished when your favs W/P passed them at the end of the season. However, if you cannot see an mprovement in their carriage, posture , toe point then you really cannot see past your biases. C/P are by far a much more dynamic team than W/P. They have stretched themselves each year, tried different avenues and not relied on the lovey dovey theme that is so popular.
As a team W/P are 2 years older and with the male partner being 3 and 1/2 years older, they should carry and display a lot more maturity on the ice than C/P. W/P floundered for 3 years before coming on strong this year, and their so called connection and maturity was not evident. Packaging wise, C/P present a clean, polished look. Costuming preferences are as varied as there are fans. What is not to ones taste may be to anothers.
By the way, as you say that so many people thought W/P should have been ahead of S/S, so many of the audience in Russia thought that C/P were greatly undermarked.
Last edited by tangos; 05-24-2011 at 02:51 AM.
It's really going to be an interesting year in dance next year.
I've heard that it is likely that it is going to be made more difficult to get level 4 in lifts. Also the required not touching sequence, I think in the SD?, is going to be circular. It is going to be fascinating to see how the teams do that, and it will add interest in an area when some of the step sequences have gotten rather generic in order to get all the different turns in to achieve level 4. I expect all of the top Z&S teams to arrive with really great circular not touching steps right out of the box.
Anything that makes lifts harder favors teams with a height difference-and that includes the Shibs. D&W and V&M have proved very, very strong in lifts for years now, so I don't expect them to have trouble, with this requirement, at least by Worlds. On the other hand, teams like F&S and I&K and C&L, where lifts have been a problem in the past, or where the gentleman has had back problems, may have more difficulty in adjusting to the new rule, if indeed said rule passes.
US, Russia & Canada are all going to have really amazing National competitions. Even with all 3 countries having three spots at Worlds, Euros and 4CC's, there are just so many really talented teams in all 3 countries!
Colleen just covered the situation in Canada, but she left out Harvey/Gagnon and Ralph/Hill, both of whom are worthy and talented teams. With V&M, W&P and C&P, not to mention P&I, all having a lot of success this last year, it might be hard for the younge/lower rankedr teams to stay focussed and keep working on their weaknesses. However, injuries happen, and retirements happen. I hope R/H and H/G will keep working, because both teams are really good, and really worth watching.
As to which 2 teams of W/P, C/P, and P/I finish 2nd and 3rd at Canadian Nationals, I would hesitate to predict. P/I will be at a disadvantage to W/P and C/P, because having not gone to Worlds this year, they may only get one GP, and that would be Skate Canada. In fact, it will be interesting to see which teams Skate Canada uses for their 2nd and 3rd picks. It might be smart to send W/P and C/P to non Skate Canada events instead, so that they can get a G/P score for 2 of R/H, H/G and P/I.
In the US, it's also going to be a fabulous nationals. D&W, the Shibs, and C&Z all placed top 10 in the World this year, and S&B placed top ten last year. However, it's hard to ignore that Lichtman&Copely (also a Z&S team) just won Junior Worlds, and will be in Seniors, and Kriengkrairut and Giuletti-Schmitt were wonderful at US Nationals, and except for some mistakes could have passed C&Z for third place. And I still like Cannuscio and Lorello (whose year-high point was a great SD at TEB), and Cannuscio and McManus, who did quite well in juniors and will be in Seniors this year. So there will be some great skating there at Nationals. The most interesting things to me will be what do S&B look like after a year off, and as a Z&S team, and what will C&Z come up with. I expect them to do great things with a Latin SD.
Also at Russian Nationals, there will be B&S, I&K, R&T, and K&A, and newly up from juniors, Monko & Khaliavin and Rushkash and Guerreiro, again a strong field with competition high for all 3 spots. I&K may struggle with new lift rules. M&K had some serious (and largely ignored) timing issues this year that may catch up with them in seniors, especially in the SD. I expect to see Khokhlova trying to win the I'm the hottest contest in the SD, for sure. There are probably some other teams going to seniors that are also strong. It will be a wonderful Nationals competition, too. I hope to see B&S get some really worthy choreo this year. I really do. And I hope I&K will do really well with Morosov, although changing a coach to change your results is something that does not always work.
As KKonas said, the rhumba CD is not a particularly sexy CD.
Torvill & Dean 1984 Olympics
Bestemianova & Bukin 1984 Olympics
Blumberg & Siebert 1984 Olympics
Klimova & Ponomarenko 1984 Olympics
Fox & Dalley 1984 Olympics 6th
Even Usova & Zhulin couldn't inject a lot of steaminess into the rhumba CD
Consequently, teams that don't do steaminess, can match up the rhumba with the merengue, and be just fine.
That would include D&W, C&P, and the Shibs.
I probably shouldn't be tempted this late at night, but...
Once again.. I do not dislike C/P. When they first came on the scene, I thought they were full of promise. As I've said before , I still see much to appreciate in their skating. I feel they have been held back unnecessarily by poor choices made by their coaches. Instead of being completely objective about what the team needed to succeed , they seemed to take a defensive attitude and try to make up the difference with PR, and mainly looking for ways to disguise the problems.
I've been a dancer and a dance teacher.I know from close personal observation what can be done to correct a fault over the course of 2 yrs. As I've said before, I have seen some improvement in C/P's posture ,etc., but not enough to convince me that it's been a major focus. Either not enough help has been given , or it was given by someone without enough expertise to get results... But since you seem to want to believe I dislike C/P , you don't have to take my word for it, just think 'pairs' for a moment and compare what has been achieved with Meaghan Duhamel over the last 2 yrs. It's simply stunning. Do you believe she has greater talent , a better proportioned body, a greater will to succeed than C/P ?..I don't . And please don't say "they're just kids" again, because it's actually easier to make these corrections the younger the athlete /dancer is.The bad habit will have had less time to become set. The only reason Vanessa, Kharis and Kelly all have problems with high shoulders ( just for example) , is poor training in this regard, and there's simply no excuse for it at this level.
W/P are not my favourites...my favourites are V/M. But I've felt it quite unfair that so many people have not wanted to admit that W/P were anywhere near as good a team as C/P ,based on some very small margins of difference in their marks. So I've argued that they should be given credit for being very close in ability. I make no secret of the fact that I prefer more dancerly teams over more athletic ones..that's just a matter of taste. But it doesn't mean I can't recognise when an athletic team is as good or clearly better.
I'm just saying that after World's, I don't think W/P will automatically be percieved to be the third team in Canada . According to the results, the world now considers them our second team , for the moment, and C/P will have to work hard and make some progress if they want to change that. In Canada, if they have a close competition ,I don't think C/P can trust that they'll come out on the winning side. Unless we hear of a coaching change , or some very serious dance training , I don't feel confident that they'll be able to do it. This does not make me happy. I think it would be a shame if they could not remain competitive.
Is something going on with C/Z? Are they still together....?
tangos, I'm gonna argue that the attitude you present is exactly the attitude C/P with their team need to avoid.
doris, I actually think that P/I are all right for two spots. The way the cut off works actually works doesn't hurt them as much thanks to a strong SB. They'll be fifth in line for a second one, should SC give them a first chance.
Could they find another choreographer? If they want to stay in "happy Canton" after all, what happened at WCh - OK, but why they couldnt made something without Zueva-Shpilband? I think they could skate perfectly C-P this year FD. Why they didnt work with Dean? But we dont know will they skate next season or no. Maybe they dont want to lose to there friends again next year.
As for next season.
1. Shibs will beat D-W in technik at Nationals again and will be very close to them at Nationals.
2. P-B will win there first WCh medal. Dont know, who will not, but this must be P-B year. If this two will not made this next year - they will never won WCh medal.
3. Russian team will Europian champoions next season. Now look, like B-S more close to do this.
4. Weaver-Poje will be higher, then C-P all next season. And if V-M will retier - they will become number one team in Canada.
5. P-I will beat C-P at Nationals or will be very close to them.
My wish list:
1. Samuelson-Bates will return and will have greate results at Nationals (i know, Shibs will be higher, but i wish S-B become number 1 team in USA - i really love there balletic lines - oposites to new World champions
2. V-M will skate one more season and will win one more gold with masterpies program from Dean And without Zueva-Shpilband, who since 2008 made all for V-M lose to D-W.
And i cant understand all this 10 in component score. Especially for D-W. I thought 10 - marks for perfection. Hope next season we will have less 10th in components score and less levels 4. I wish requirements for level 4 for all elements become more stronger. I think champions must show something unique in technik too.
But according this ISU wish to kill ice dance
The music does not have an uplifting effect (Free
Dance): - 1.0 to - 2.0
Last edited by npa; 05-24-2011 at 12:42 PM.
What are you talking about?And without Zueva-Shpilband, who since 2008 made all for V-M lose to D-W.