Good luck to them!
On a more serious note, I hope Alex reecovers -- I'd like to see that dance done with Alex healthy and not suffering though it. It seems that Alex has had to suffer through FDs (4CC, Worlds, COR).
What I think.
Last year D&W were supposed to skate La Strada and the USFSA didn't like it and made them change it. All a bit last minute and fortunately Zoueva had in her mind a program she wanted them to skate to for a long time that they refused, were not interested. They find themselves in a situation where they are in a way desperate for a new FD and therefore much easier for Marina to sell them a program she has already imagined in her mind. She was right, Die Fledermaus suited them beautifully and made a huge impact with fans. This year at some point they dumped their Sinatra FD and had to start from scratch, it would seem this year Meryl picked the alternative, music she loved and we get Notre Dame.
Last year Tessa got music she loved, Funny Face, which was as well received initially as Notre Dame was for D&W ie..not well. This year they had in mind to use Carmen for the SD but were told by someone in ISU it was unacceptable for the polka. Having already played with the idea and music it is decided to switch it out for their FD. It comes to light this is a program idea Marina has tried to sell them for a number of years which they refused. Just as D&W refused DF. Recent interviews tell us it took all summer to make this program and Marina says she pulled in Jennifer Swan to make it less typical. So I believe it's Swan that gave it the quality we are seeing now, before Swan Marina says it was too typical.
What is the common factor here? In a pinch Marina seems to know what to do to bring her teams up competition. Last year in a pinch she gets D&W to skate DF and this year she gets V&M to do Carmen for a SD which likely made it much easier for them to accept as a FD. In both cases Marina's vision of D&W doing a great DF and Tessa being great as Carmen were correct. I don't think it's so much favouritism (unless she decides to swap years she plays favours in which case 2014 is D&W's turn ) but rather Marina doing well in a pinch.
Perhaps Marina also allowed Swan in because she was swamped with trying to sort out the three teams, at least two of which have program changes through the off season and likely three (something went on with Shibs SD which was supposed to be MaryPoppins??). I suspect Notre Dame, Carman, Shibs SD have/had very little mileage and runthroughs as all were probably ready late, which is why I'm not ready to write off any of them just yet. Now that they have the basic bones of their programs sorted and have gotten feedback on the levels it's practice, practice, practice and I don't think ANY of these teams need Igor around to practice hard. What makes these teams as good as they are is their own work ethic and drive.
Speaking of work ethic, when I read to Shibs' ISU bio to figure out why they were not dressed to skate a Mary Poppins SD and it notes that they train 40 hours a week. That's like a full-time job! And they're going to school too.....they must be good time managers...
In case anyone was wondering V/M work 30-35 hours a week and D/W work 29-31 hours a week. It says Sinitsina/Zhiganshin have work up to 54 hours a week during the summer.
Last edited by Mrs. P; 11-12-2012 at 05:09 PM.
I read elsewhere that Tessa said that after Marina choreographed the program they felt it was too generic so they brought in Swan who had done the Pink Floyd program.
Well, ISU bios are interesting...I highly doubt that Sinitsina/Zhiganshin pull in 50+ hours a week during the summer - if so that means that they are also training full time on the weekends with no rest days...hmmm Mr. Shpilband would doubt this....
I actually like both programs from I/K. The SD is in a better shape than the FD. The FD is a bit raw now I believe in part because of her injury. It has a nice fresh light feel to it. I'll curious to see how it develops over the season. If they're going to experiment why not this year. All the best to them. As per the rivalry with BS I say that's a distraction. The real big picture is the depth of russian ice dance that will erupt soon with S/Z, St/Bu, B/S and I/K..who knows I might be missing a few others. All the best to them I just like ice dancing, it's my favourite discipline.
Was "uneasy" a direct quote from them? That is not a snarky question; I ask because I did not catch the primary reporting on this point.
I did see the video of Shpilband hugging V/M after the SCI medal ceremony, and if the Canadians felt any uneasiness on the inside, they did not show it on the outside.
I recall that V/M wrote in their book that at their first competition after leaving Paul MacIntosh, they felt some initial awkwardness (a totally different nuance than uneasiness). They sounded wistful that they had to skate right past MacIntosh at the boards and break their comfortable habit of turning to him for advice and support.
It did not seem to be a matter of tension, but of separation anxiety (even though it was their choice to change coaches). They missed him.
The good news is that the awkwardness was only temporary, and V/M remain close to MacIntosh.
The book also described how especially Virtue needed time getting used to training in Canton on a permanent basis. (MacIntosh previously had sent V/M to Zoueva for temporary training.) Virtue would have felt disloyal to MacIntosh if she had instantaneously embraced the new arrangement.
If anything, I suspect that V/M were glad that Shpilband needed to be in Windsor too -- so that they would have a chance to see him without going out of their way (i.e., without any risk of ruffling Zoueva's feathers).
Last edited by ice coverage; 11-18-2012 at 11:20 AM.