Ice Dancing – Olympics 2010 Vancouver – Ice Skating

Congratulations
to Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir of Canada who claimed the Olympic Gold Medal with a beautiful and magical display of ice-dancing.  As a former ice-dancer myself I love watching the Winter Olympics.  This Olympics ice-dancing competition featured many outstanding teams who thrilled the world with their artistry, technical skill, grace, elegance and strength.

The following video, while not of their Olympic performance, is a beautiful montage of Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir skating through the years.

Virtue and Moir delighted us with a wonderful rendition of this year’s compulsory dance, The Tango Romantica.  Then they enthralled us with their Original Dance in true Flamenco style.  They capped it all off with a magnificent Free Dance to Mahler’s Fifth Symphony. Virtue and Moir have it all — great technical skill, wonderful creativity, deep knee-bends and edges, combined with speed that creates that smooth and easy flow over the ice.  They make everything they do look so easy and seamless.  And they have one other distinct advantage which, I believe, set them apart from the other Olympic teams — their chemistry with each other.  While it seems that they are not a couple off ice, they create the illusion on the ice of being a young couple very much in love.  Their chemistry is undeniable.  The gentle reassuring looks and hugs they exchanged before getting on the ice complete the illusion.  They step on the ice and they are like the Romeo and Juliet of the skating world, adorned in beautifully tasteful, yet incredibly glamorous costumes which complement both their skating, and the music to which they are skating.   We are transported with the love that exudes for each other into a world of romance of a bygone era.  A world in which life seemed simple and chivalry was the order of the day,  a world of Ginger Rogers and Fred Astaire.  

There were other teams who also skated their hearts out and thrilled us. 

Meryl Davis and Charlie White
of the US, who took home the Silver Medal, were brilliant.  Their Original Dance in the form of an Indian Folk Dance (somewhat Bollywoodish) was creative and technically loaded. The costumes for this were both exotic and authentic.  Apparently Meryl went shopping with her mum and bought original clothes and fabrics which were adapted into her costume for the number.  The jewelry she wore was the icing on the cake, beautiful and exotic.  Then came their Phantom of the Opera Free Dance where Meryl and Charlie displayed even more of their amazing. artistry, skill, grace, storyline and great technicality.  A stellar performance, with beautiful costumes which supported what they were portraying on ice. 

The following video of Meryl and Charlie while not of their Olympic performance, does have the famous Phantom of the Opera program and is a lovely montage of many of their programs.  

 

Tanith Belbin and Benjamin Agosto
of the US skated very well in outrageous and entertaining costumes.  His was a cross between Saturday Night Fever and Elvis.  They looked relaxed when it was all over.  I thought they were going to take home the Bronze, but the judges for some unknown reason decided that honor should go to Domnina Oksana and Maxim Shablin of the Russian Federation. 

 Emily Samuelson and Evan Bates
also of the US  finished 11th having skated beautifully and are a pair to keep an eye on for future podium placement.  For their Free Dance they skated to Canto Bella Terra sung by Andrea Bocelli and Sarah Brightman.  Lovely, just lovely.  Now I might be a bit biased here as Sarah Brightman is my favorite female singer.  However, they did a great job and had great costumes too.  

Jana Khoklova and Sergei Novitski
of the Russian Federation, who finished 9th, skated a fiery Free Dance to Stravinsky’s Firebird Suite.  Jana’s costume matched the music and enhanced the program tremendously.  Her sleeves had red and orange material strategically draped from them and really gave the look of wings on fire.  Their routine was exciting and well-executed and they displayed many creative "bird" type lifts.  

Sinead  and John Kerr
the British brother and sister team who finished 8th, took a daring move by skating not to the more traditional and conservative music usually favored by skaters for competition but to Linkin Park’s Krwling. I had not heard this song before but was quite taken with it and John and Sinead’s interpretation.   John had one little mishap on a twizzle early in the program, where he put his foot down.  You could see he was very upset with himself.  Still, they skated really well for the rest of the performance and the audience went wild when Sinead displayed her strength and skill by lifting John in one move. 

Nathalie Pechalat and Fabian Bourzat
of France, who finished 7th,  skated  to Requiem for a Dream by Clint Mansell.  Clint, you must be happy your music has been skated to quite a bit by different skaters at this Olympics.  Nathalie and Fabian’s interpretation was of time and was quite haunting.  I kept thinking of the movie (particularly of the fridge moving) and found it vividly surrealistic.  Great skating too.

Isabelle Delobel and Oliver Schoenfelder
another French couple, finished 6th.  What was most impressive to me about this couple was that Isabelle had a baby in October 2009!  Incredible — here she was competing in the Olympics just 4 months later.  That is not only dedication, it’s also a tribute to her athleticism. They are retiring after a wonderful career together and this was their Olympic swan song. 

Federica Faiella and Massimo Scali
of Italy took 5th place skating very well displaying some creative lifts, especially one in which she lifted him and; just like when Sinead  lifted John earlier, the crowd went crazy!  Perhaps this is a new thing in ice-dancing that we will see more of in the future.  And, hey, maybe in the future we’ll have a new category like in the movie Blades of Glory (staring Will Ferrell and Jon Heder)  for ice-dancing or pairs where two men or even two women could be a team.  Really, is it that far out?  They already do that in the bobsled!

Anyway, a fabulous competition and a great thank you and congratulations to all of the competitors.

February 24 , 2010 | | In: Current Events, Sports

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