Canadian Ice Dance 2013/2014: General discussion

Discussion in 'The Trash Can' started by geoskate, Aug 31, 2013.

  1. lavenderblue

    lavenderblue Active Member

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    Skate Canada has started rolling out a "My Canadians" series featuring national team members discussing their favorite Nationals experiences and goals for the year. Two for dance so far:

    Orford/Williams
    Paul/Islam
     
  2. girlscouse62

    girlscouse62 Active Member

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    I think it's wonderful how much Tessa and Scott have spurred on the younger skaters, a d ignited a fire in Canadian Ice Dance. Kudos to them
     
  3. Debrah

    Debrah Well-Known Member

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    I have all my fingers and toes crossed for Paul and Islam to make it to Sochi too, hoping they can have 2 amazing and very strong performances at nationals to propel them there. While I do like G&P FD, I much prefer P&I overall this season since they have a great SD as well as a fine FD, and they have improved so much this past year in Detroit, they certainly have the "it" factor; IMO, they are the team with most potential for the next cycle, so I really want them to make it to Sochi for the Olympic experience, Poirier already had Vancouver OLY with Crone, also I can't forget how G & P messed up/fell at last year's worlds, so yeah, a 4th place G&P can likely still go to worlds, along with P&I, since V&M will likely retire after Sochi, so SC can also let the INT judges have a say in who they feel is the better team at this point, since politically most everything will be reset for the new OLY cycle at 2014 worlds in Japan, as many dance teams will likely be retiring right after Worlds, or will have already skated for the last time in Sochi thus clearing the way for new young teams to make their mark...
     
    euterpe and (deleted member) like this.
  4. Emdee

    Emdee Well-Known Member

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    Considering that Paul's foot had to be somewhat reconstructed I think he has come a long way in a short time.
    This match up at Nationals will be one to watch!
     
  5. lavenderblue

    lavenderblue Active Member

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    Paul wasn't injured during their performances at 2013 Worlds.
     
  6. aftershocks

    aftershocks Well-Known Member

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    Weaver/Poje; Gilles/Poirier; and Mitchell/Islam are all great fun to watch, coming up as the heirs to the greatness of Virtue/Moir. Wow, it seems Canada is loaded in ice dance and pairs disciplines. And of course with Patrick Chan in his final season, Canada is a big threat to win Olympic Gold in the team event.

    I was looking at vids of M/I and of G/P's wonderfully different FD this season to Hitchcock. IMO, even tho' many see Gilles as having some drawbacks with her blades/edges, I feel from looking at what these two teams are doing this season, that G/P is clearly more at this point entertaining, sophisticated and mature. That's not a put-down on M/I -- they just need to find more intriguing music and interpretative concept to stand out, and to develop their expressiveness together on the ice. I don't think M/I's programs this season are as impactful as I've seen from them previously.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sSHMDIFL1so G/P

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LH8QNHrgrM8 M/I
     
  7. canadablue

    canadablue New Member

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    I've been a lurker for a very long time, but I really wanted to respond to this, so I hope it's not rude to just jump right in :) The team is actually P/I not M/I (Alexandra Paul and Mitchell Islam).

    JMO, I find G/P's FD concept unique, but not executed in a way that is sophisticated or mature at all. It's overdramatic and gimmick-heavy, the relationship portrayed has been one-dimensional so far despite its originality. P/I's FD relies on their connection when skating, how they can create a subtle change of mood by the way they respond to one another, how they reconnect seamlessly after being apart. They find the nuances of their music, and have a presence of the ice that is grownup, if understated. Entertainment value, on the other hand - I can see how that comes down to a preference for a particular style. I tend to prefer more subtle and abstract dynamics on the ice than an in-your-face storyline. Considering the type of praise that G/P’s FD has received, you’d think that their FD is the abstract one, but it’s told through a lot of gesturing and comes across as obvious to me. P/I’s choreography has much more detail, which may not be obvious at first glance – it’s especially in things like changes of hold, and because of that type of organic movement, it portrays a more complex relationship to me than G/P’s does.

    And all of this is somewhat beside the point when it comes to competitions because the issue of blades and edges IS the main criteria. (I realize scoring may not have been your point aftershocks, if you were talking only about your own preferences). Performance and Choreography are a relatively small percentage of how the score is determined. If Piper’s skating is problematic and P/I’s is not, that should be a disadvantage going into Nationals that would be hard to make up for even if G/P’s FD was indeed artistically superior. P/I have had trouble in the past putting two technically strong performances into one competition, but their skating skills as a team are considerably stronger and they are more than capable of outskating G/P next week barring any major bobbles.
     
  8. Zazy

    Zazy Member

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    I agree. Among Canadian teams, P/I's basic skating is second only to V/M. While Piper has certainly made some improvements, there's still a large gap in skating skills that the national judges have mostly ignored, probably because of G/P's speed.
     
  9. NorthernDancers

    NorthernDancers New Member

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    First of all, I also admire that G/P are trying to be innovative and are playing to their strengths (ie. personality, pizazz, unique tricks, etc.) They do not capture romance, passion and connection the way V/M, W/P, P/I can do. I don't think its in them. But they are fun, dramatic, and entertaining, which makes what they do unique.

    But this is not what decides ice dance. Personal or audience style or music preferences do not, or should not, matter to the end score. It's about executing synchronized twizzles, a bunch of lifts, quality step sequences, and quality spins. It's about variety of holds, depth of edges, matching lines, etc. PCS components like skating skills don't mention at all style of music or the audience reaction. Even choreography and interpretation PCS components don't favour 1 style or music choice over another. Scoring is about the quality of movement and skills through the elements, and weaving those through quality choreography and interpretation that matches the particular style and music chosen by the team.

    In the case of G/P, too often judges have been mesmerized by the entertainment value, and forgotten about the criteria, at least in Canada. It's the only explanation why they were as close to V/M as they were last year at Canadians. It was insulting. At Worlds, the judges were not so confused. I'm hoping this year we will see some fair, consistent and clear judging, regardless of music choice and style, regardless of who the team is at Canadians and Worlds. I'd like to see judging that applies all the criteria of PCS, and not just some popular favourite (ie. speed, speed, speed...).
     
  10. euterpe

    euterpe Well-Known Member

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    Wow! 184 words in one sentence!
     
  11. girlscouse62

    girlscouse62 Active Member

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    Wow, counting words :)
     
  12. Pratfall

    Pratfall Active Member

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    canadablue and NorthernDancers have pretty much said it all for me.. :)

    While I freely admit to preferring P/I's style , you can see Piper has worked hard trying to catch up...but she's not there yet..and while I like GP's FD, and it seems to be a bit less "dashing madly from one highlight to the next" than their past two , something of that aura still lingers about this program.

    P/I have much more subtlety , beautiful lines and posture, lovely edges and seem to have progressed in speed, projecting while keeping it natural, and in confidence.
     
  13. clarie

    clarie Well-Known Member

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    ^ This. I think they are wonderful, and hope the judging is fair.
     
  14. Marta24

    Marta24 Member

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    I hope too,that P/I will at least have the chance to get that 3rd spot and that the Canadian judges haven't already decided that it will go to G/P.
    What I like about P/I this year is how determined they are. In interviews they make clear that their goal is to get into the Olympic team and for me it's the first time that I can see their determination on the ice. The FD at Skate Canada was just fabulous.

    IMO, the 3rd spot is between P/I and G/P. No other team came close to their points, at least not in the international assignments. The question will be, which style the judges prefer, since they couldn't be anymore different.
     
  15. spikydurian

    spikydurian Well-Known Member

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  16. pani

    pani Well-Known Member

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    I love GP FD. Thats why i wish to see it at OG and WCh.
    As for PI. Dont care about there programs and dont like that they try to be VM clons, but didnt have there chemistry and dance ability. Plus i think they need to be more creative and try to work with outside choreograher.
    But of couse Alexandra lines is die for. But Paul lines look amazing too. PI need a little more personality.
    Good luck to both teams at Nationals.
     
  17. lavenderblue

    lavenderblue Active Member

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    You mean like the four outside choreographers they worked with while still in Barrie (Dubreuil/Lauzon, Romain Haguenauer, and David Wilson, as well as Jeff Buttle for their "In Your Eyes" exhibition)? They've arguably had more diversity in that respect than V/M have.

    P/I and G/P do indeed prefer and utilize different performance styles, but that's certainly not the only difference between the teams, nor should the judges adopt that perspective. G/P have made improvements this year and I give them credit there -- there's more effort to use hold, skate in and out of elements, and Piper's edgework has become slightly more stable. But they're not at P/I's skating level, as P/I have also improved tremendously over the course of their time at DSC, and their ability to skate interdependently, maintaining good edges and drawing momentum from the blades up, is what should separate the teams, and that's no value judgment. Speed is also not quite in G/P's favor this season; with a greater effort to skate more than pose, they've also lost some steam, while P/I are capable at this point of covering a lot of ice in quick order.

    Judges will surely have their style preferences, but any judge who uses style to guide a decision over and against what's laid out in the rulebook is judging quite improperly.
     
  18. pani

    pani Well-Known Member

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  19. Jeanne7

    Jeanne7 Member

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    Well said. G/P have a lot to admire & I like the uniqueness of their program but am hoping P/I skate clean since in my eyes, they are the superior team - subtle, with gorgeous lines and skating skills. She's so lyrical. Can't wait for the Nationals; wish I could be there in person.:(
     
  20. puglover

    puglover Active Member

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    My husband and I were discussing the Olympic team selection and I had to admit my heart always breaks for the dance and pairs teams that don't get to go. It has been so close in the past - please, please let the judging be accurate and fair. At least, this time, W&P are secure as #2. I have my preference, but really hope they all skate great, no unexpected slips, and they can all hold their heads up having fought a good fight.
     
  21. clarie

    clarie Well-Known Member

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    I never hope for anyone to fall or slip, but it anyone is, then I really hope it's not P/I.
     
  22. puglover

    puglover Active Member

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    I second that - clarie.
     
  23. geoskate

    geoskate Well-Known Member

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    Congratulations to Kharis Ralph/Asher Hill on establishing new ISU personal bests in the short dance, free dance and overall at the 4CC competition.

    Their skating there moved them up to 28th on the current season's best listing. They will likely move down a bit after the Olympic and World scores are added, so that probably won't be enough to get them on the Grand Prix circuit. If that happens, I hope that Skate Canada will continue to send them to Senior B events (as they did this season with assignments to Coupe de Nice and NRW), since IMO they are continuing to improve and could make the Grand Prix circuit with one more season of continued development.

    However, they once again did not make the short dance technical minimum for Worlds, missing it by 1.79 points, so they cannot be sent to Worlds if a spot were to open up there. Orford/Williams are in the same position, having missed the technical minimum by 0.78 points.

    Hopefully that won't matter, of course, because even if Virtue/Moir retire there should still be three strong teams to send (Weaver/Poje, Paul/Islam and Gilles/Poirier).
     
  24. princeton123

    princeton123 New Member

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    Have Weaver/Poje said if they're going to retire after Sochi? I think they could fill the V/M shaped hole in Canadian ice dancing for a few years and grab a couple of national titles but the other teams are younger and improving very quickly and I don't see them holding on much longer.

    Paul/Islam are real contenders for 2018 if they remain injury free - they've really improved in the past two years. I still don't know about Gilles/Poirier, I just don't think their basic skating skills are very good at all - they lack polish. Ralph/Hill remain stagnant and never seem to improve season to season which I don't understand. They're going to drop off the radar soon if they don't get their act together. Orford/Williams remain completely average and whatever - boring, uninteresting skaters. They seem totally personality and charisma free off ice too.
     
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2014
  25. blueglass

    blueglass New Member

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    I much preferred the performance at Canadians of R&H to that of G/P. They had a wonderful FP. I hope I'm wrong, but I think the judging is the problem. I wonder if they moved to some 'name' coach if that would help give them a new lease on life. It worked for W/P who were stagnating before they went to Detroit. I think P&I are way overdue and IMO will overtake W/P sooner than later.
     
  26. aka_gerbil

    aka_gerbil Rooting for the Underdogs

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    I think for R/H, the problem isn't as much the judging as it is they've stagnated technically and need more help than Carol Lane is able to give them.
     
  27. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I

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    Ralph/Hill have not been Lane's #1 team, ever. That isn't to say a coach can't do a great job with more than one team, even more than one team at the same level, but that doesn't mean they'll be treated equally. G/P had a wonderful program with an impeccable theatrical performance quality, but I thought Ralph/Hill moved and dance much better overall, especially in the FD.

    I love Paul/Islam, but I'm not sure I see them overtaking Weaver/Poje. I hope Krylova/Camerlengo give them range-extending programs over the next two years.
     
  28. valyrian

    valyrian New Member

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    I would love R/H to get another coach. They're good dancers and Asher especially is such a charmer but their programs never seem to bring out their best. Carmelengo and Krylova might be a good fit but their stable is probably a little full right now.
     
  29. geoskate

    geoskate Well-Known Member

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    The whole point of my post was that the judges (at least) think they HAVE improved, since they had personal bests in all segments of the competition. Having said that, kwanfan 1818 may have a point. They may be getting the second-best programs from the coaching staff, which could be affecting their overall results. Like some of the other posters, I wouldn't mind seeing them move to another coach, just to see what would happen.
     
  30. NorthernDancers

    NorthernDancers New Member

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    I think that R/H had wonderful programs a couple of years ago, and were well rewarded for it at Worlds. They should have been 3rd at Nationals that year, and they had a strong debut at Worlds. But their material the last 2 seasons has been just horrendous. Really awful. And they are not making the technical improvements they need to progress nationally and internationally. R/H are definitely better than O/W, but their programs have definitely held them back nationally in my opinion. And for some reason which I can't figure out SC seems to prefer O/W, even though they have not done that terribly well internationally. I think R/H need to either move to new coaches (preferred), or the Lane team needs to expand its horizons and pull in experts for targeted work on packaging/music/technical refinement. I've never really understood why more of these elite coaches don't work together to complete the circle with their students, at least on targeted areas. It would help all of them.