Winter Is Coming

Over the past few week I have been watching hours and hours of figure skating (Nebelhorn Trophy, Finlandia Trophy, Skate America, Skata Canada, Cup of China), but I still haven’t found a routine to fall in love with.

Of course the Olympic year is tough and no one wants to reach peak condition six months in advance only to show up tired and spent on the ineffable week. But I’m not complaining about performances (some of which are excellent anyway), I’m complaining about the routines themselves. No Carmen this year, alas, no Pina.

Nevertheless, Berton and Hotarek’s Dracula is first class stuff. I’m ever so proud of this young Italian couple.

I also quite like Julia Lipnitskaia with Schindler’s List. She’s a fabulous skater and she must have been through an awful lot to obtain this perfect timing for the Olympics (being sixteen next year and still so light and petite). Well, most Russian girls must have been through an awful lot for this big Putin celebration. On a lighter note, isn’t the costume lovely? Figure skating has always had a lot to do with knowing how to wear a winter coat.

lipnitskaia

I may not have found my routine this year, but there’s so much to love anyway. All the classical music (typical of the Olympic year), the amazing athletes at various stages of their career (oh, Yuzuru), and the ageing coaches and choreographers that I can remember on the ice ten, twenty, thirty years ago, Orser, Urmanov, Pasquale Camerlengo, and glimpses of their signature style I can sometimes see in their students.

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