Loved the Lithuanians program to Phantom of the Opera. Super, super cheesy, but really engaging nonetheless.
Fusar-Poli spent the entire warm-up ignoring Margaglio. But after they skated, she dramatically kissed Margaglio on the forehead, apparently restoring him to her good graces. She seems like a piece of work. She has a child; that poor thing will need therapy for years. As for their program, he was literally trembling during at least one or the lifts. I bet she Knows People Who Know People.
The Israeli skaters’ Bolero program has gotten a lot of slack—how dare anyone use the same music as the legendary Torville and Dean! You know, if you want a bolero, why not use a new version, like the one that played over the closing credits in Moulin Rouge? Why deliberately invite the comparison? They did a nice job, but you wouldn’t know it from the commentators, who spent the entire performance comparing them to T&D.
I hate Grushina and Goncharov’s program. What is up with her costume? It’s like she’s channeling Pocohantas as a stripper princess. There is more fabric in her headband than on her entire torso. Their music never really moves and I think they’re really boring to watch. I can’t believe they were on the medal stand.
Navka and Kostamarov skated to Carmen, but instead of a tragic, dramatic program, they did a playful rendition. It reminds me of Debi Thomas’s bronze medal performance in Calgary in 1988; she and Katarina Witt both skated to Carmen, but while Katarina’s Carmen died tragically on the ice, Debi’s triumphed. I don’t think it makes for a particularly compelling program—and I particularly hate the way she “dies” at the end in that really rigid, jerky way, with her skates pointing in the air—but they were solid enough tonight to retain their lead. It wasn’t inspiring, but they did the job. I cringed on that last lift when she grabbed her skate; she cut her hand quite badly doing that at the European Championships.
Denkova and Staviski: They moved so fast and threw themselves into the moves with such energy that I kept worrying they would fling themselves onto the ice. But they stayed upright, and skated what I thought was an energetic and passionate, if not particularly beautiful, program.
Tanith and Ben looked HOTT and skated well. I think her costumes are really well designed; they’re flamboyant without being hideously ugly (I’m talking to you, Stripper Pocohantas.) Their music choice is inspired, with the rhythmic beat moving into the more lushly melodic middle section. They have nice spins, I think, and a fabulous connection with each other. Tanith didn’t seem quite as on as she normally does; their last rotational lift looked slightly uneven and she slid a bit on a twizzle. Wonder if nerves got to her? Interestingly, they are one of the few couples in ice dance who aren’t sleeping with each other; G&G are married. Navka is actually married to former ice dancing champion Sasha Zhulin, who now coaches them. I thought B&A were great and infinitely more entertaining than Navka/Kostamarov, but Tanith did make that tiny mistake. I’m disappointed, but I can see why the standings ended up the way that they did.
Delobel and Schoenfeld have a very interesting and artsy program. Their lifts are elegant and I adore the way that they create masks with their gloves. I've seen this program before and I like it so much better the second time around; they have a lot of intensity and depth and really cast a spell with their music and their choreography. But honestly, this program doesn't connect with a crowd, and Belbin and Agosto are a hard act to follow. I think they should have won bronze; they're so much more complex and artistic than G&G. I'm really disappointed for them.
Also, loved Tanith's shout-out to both winning a medal for the United States AND to her support for the Canadian ice-dancer who seriously injured herself and skipped the free skate. Way to be a dual citizen! Also, I love that Ben just thanked their amazing legal team. Go lawyers!
What do you all think? Which was the ugliest outfit of the evening? Did Tanith and
Ben deserve silver, or should they have been on top of the podium? And were the French robbed?
Tuesday, February 21, 2006
I HEAR THE ICE TINKLE, SEE THE LIGHTS TWINKLE: Here's Gretchen's take on the ice dancing finals:
Posted by Adam at 8:05 AM