Could a Solo Dance/Artistic Event be a good option for future major championships?
A common remark made by commentators about artistic skaters who struggle with jumps regularly in competition is that 'if they were able to skate a program with no jumps, they will be world champions etc.'
Imagine if the ISU began purting purely artistic disciplines like these in major championships.
From my understanding, there are artistic skating championships, however, they are never highlighted that much.
Dance is a universally popular activity enjoyed by many people globally which continuously evolves and changes like all other artistic forms and mediums. I would love to see all forms of dance translated onto the ice and having events where skaters can give our artistically minded skaters an opportunity to perform at their best.
In an ideal world, it would be great but in reality, chances are it is not realistic financially but figure skating needs to change and evolve in the face of decline in North America and Europe and all ideas need to be explored and considered.
What are your thoughts?
Who are some skaters today that would be world champions if they were able to just present an artistic program?
It's really hard to judge artistic performances. Certainly it would not be a good Olympic event as people watch for the elements and the judges would just have a field day. The reason skating is in the Olympics and worth watching is the elements. Purely artistic competitions are fine on a local level but not nationally/internationally, IMO.
There are events that showcase artistry. They are called galas or shows.
Originally Posted by GF2445
Originally Posted by CanadianSkaterGuy
Bona Fide Member
KKonas, at the club level there must be a lot of little girls who want to learn ice dancing but don't have a partner. Are there competitions in solo dance at this level?
they go through testing, I'm not sure about competitions (I'm not KKonas, but I still felt like answering lol)
Originally Posted by Mathman
The US has a solo dance program, with a national championship, beginning a few years ago:
Looks like the UK has had a national solo championship at least since 2002:
Not sure about other countries.
For free dance, or OD/short dance, ordinal judging is probably too subjective. If it's just judges choosing who they find most entertaining, it's not a sport -- even if that might be more fun for casual audiences to watch.
Some kind of code of points with some required elements, levels, point values, and GOEs would make it more objective and keep athletic and technical accomplishment important, to keep it in the realm of sport. At least to the same degree as SD and FD by couples. And then PCS can also reward choreography, music interpretation, performance, etc.
Obviously there can't be any lifts with solo dance, but other elements can be similar to what couples do. See p. 7 here for the current senior solo free dance requirements.
Right now it doesn't attract many skaters who are aiming for international competition, because it isn't offered internationally.
I would love to see the ISU jump on the bandwagon and offer senior and junior internationals in this discipline, to increase the popularity, attract stronger athletes, eventually leading to a world championship.
It can't be anything goes and still be a competition, but I think it will be more oriented toward coherent choreography than disciplines that are focused on triple jumps.
The rules linked above allow jumps only up to half a revolution in the step sequences and don't say anything about jumps as transitions.
I'd like to see jumps of up to 1.5 revolutions allowed -- and maybe rewarded with point values in some way, or at least rewarded in PCS if used effectively and not penalized. Double, triple, or quad jumps (or backflips) could be illegal elements with penalties.
I think this will appeal to people who like ice dancing, except for those whose main interest is in the relationship between partners, which wouldn't be relevant. Instead it would be about the relationship between the skater and the ice and/or music and/or audience.
Wicked Yankee Girl
Solo dance is competed at all skill levels at Lake Placid IDC every year. However, it is, as yet, not part of regionals and so forth. Does anyone know whether there is any effort to incorporate solo dance at nationals?
In the US?
So far, it has its own nationals in September, which skaters qualify for by entering solo dance events at various club competitions during the spring and summer -- of which the Lake Placid IDC is probably the most prominent.
Right now in the US the discipline is still in it's infancy. I don't know how much further it has developed in Britain, or what other countries (Canada?) offer something similar.
There are some skaters competing solo dance who are also looking for ice dance partners with whom to qualify for Nationals and hopefully eventually internationals. And others who would never make it to that level in any discipline -- perhaps because their body type is not conducive to triple jumps or lifts even if they are just as good skaters as others who can do those moves, and better at skating to music.
As long as it's a less popular discipline, girls who focus there have at least as much chance as getting to a national championship at some level as boys in the standard disciplines. If the popularity grows, it will become that much more competitive.
What would it take to get some top athletes choosing solo dance over singles freestyle or partnered dance (or pairs)? It's kind of a chicken-or-egg thing. If there are events offered with equal prestige to the standard disciplines, internationally as well as nationally, it will attract stronger athletes. But until there are more high-level athletes participating, there's no point in holding a world championship.
Still, I wish the ISU would try to set up a system that will lead toward one sooner than later. Make it appealing to existing international-level athletes with the opportunity to compete in more than one discipline aiming toward multiple medals. Also good for high-level freestylers who need to take a temporary or permanent break from intense jumping but who can still push themselves in other skills, or who always liked the on-ice and performing aspects of skating better than the jumps, or dancers between partners. (Although with the restrictions on country switching a dancer looking for a new partner might prefer to sit out a year than to compete solo internationally.)
What made me come to this thought is that at times it seems that there is a world of music or dance styles out there that skaters have not explored yet. This is especially evident in the short dance when they are only sticking to More traditional ballroom dace rhythms and patterns. They tried incorperating hip hop rhythms into the junior SP's last season- a nice step but more can be done.
Being a classical musician, i know that there are thousands of great pieces of music- symphonies, concertos, sonatas, solo works etc. that can make great programs bit no one has thought of skating to.
Beethoven wrote more works than moonlight sonata.
Rimsky-korsokov in my opinion composed better works than his Scherherazade.
Rackmanninov (forgive the spelling) didnt just write his second piano concerto in c minor.
And all the contemporary music out there. And there are skaters who do explore and do something differant and its famtastic. I love it when teams/skaters go outside the box with their program- its fresh!
Back to the point, a world of possibilities can be opened if something in competitive skating changed. Its just an idea- im not saying that it should be an actual thing to look at but the fact is that skating needs to refresh itself because it's dying and the ISU is sitting on its hands and are not willing to address ways to improve the sport in a way that would make a significant difference to the sports popularity.
I actually wonder if you could sell something like that on TV.
Many artistic sports be it diving, figure skating or gymnastics suffer under the "what - why - how effect". People on TV don't understand why someone received more points than the other (unless its very obvious). Yes there are people who know a lot about the sport, we have those here at the forum and at other places - but the general audience just watches sports and hopes that a commentator tells them what to think about what they just saw.
As more complex and less obvious sport is, as more work must be done by the media representatives and it seems like most TV Stations either don't have the people for it or just don't see the benefit in it.
Plus, you must love the sport to report about it. I sometimes see TV commentators that would prefer having a second breakfast than actually reporting about what just happens and if you have something like Dance, then this is deadly for every type of viewer that might have zapped in.