This is an article in a personal blog, “The life style of mizumizu” in Japan.
Translated from Japanese.
A masterpiece of Miki Ando, the exhibition program, “Concierto de Aranjuez”
August 15th, 2010 JST
As for the exhibition program of Miki Ando, "Requiem" in last season was splendid, too, but "Concierto de Aranjuez" which is one of the exhibition programs in this season is wonderful still more.
It is the masterpiece which not only has an athletic forcefulness but also is full of womanly feeling.
The TV commentator, who may be aiming at livening up the audience, is apt to admire saying, “This player is evolving year by year” easily, but, in fact, for example, if a player made a impressive program in a certain season, it is difficult that the player makes the program which is same or more impressive than it in the next season.
However, the expressive power of Ando is undoubtedly increasing mellowness every year. The feminine beauty which she originally has, including the fascinating body shape, and then the attractiveness as athlete which is derived from the high athletic ability. Such an advantage in each part is being combined excellently in the program of this season.
If talking of Miki Ando, there is an image as the player with the dynamic jump, but in this program, the audience will forget that she has not jumped except a double Axel. While adopting many elements of the ice dance, it is the performance by Miki Ando, which nobody can perform except Miki Ando and which possesses a fascination which Ice Dance does not have. It is only one performance in the world. It is really splendid.
It is very novel while the design of the costume, too, introduces classical elements. As for the costume of Ando, we was surprised all the time in last season, but the fully worked-out design, too, in this time is worth seeing. Specifically, the contrast of the feel of a material is chic.
As for the collar, it draws a curve to the chest from the standing collar, but the material there gives off glossy brilliance and is somewhat solemn. But then arranging the race of the delicate pattern boldly so as to become a form of triangle from the under part of the widely opened back to the front part of the body, it is creating a light atmosphere.
The skirt of the see-through material consists of two colors with an irregular cut. The inside of the collar and the under part of the skirt are red. Then, the point putting red also in the hair ornament indirectly is smart. The cutting of the skirt which lengthened the backside makes her look like an adult more and is beautiful.
Because, moreover, she shows a thigh till the considerable upper part by the high-leg-cutting, the leg with a sexual feeling can see like a more long leg, is a good balance and is very beautiful, such as when she rotated a spin.
When Ando gathers hair up tightly, parting her hair in the middle or at the side, her Oriental features look attractive.
I felt so when she acted as a model of VOGUE but the hairstyle also of this time suits Ando well.
"Concierto de Aranjuez" is Takeshi Honda's magnum opus program and it is difficult to forget Yukina Oota's program, too, but “Concierto de Aranjuez” of Miki Ando develops in the freer world where was released from the restriction of the program for the competition.
The word of "Mon Amour" is repeated persistently. The performance of Miki Ando dyes those same phrases to a different color respectively.
Ando is skillful especially at the emotion expression being as if she craves something to someone. But, in this " Concierto de Aranjuez", Miki Ando is full of an adult attractiveness and confidence with attempting to tempt also herself while seeking love. There is no player who is wonderful like Ando when performing "woman" itself, but the charm of Miki Ando is not only that. The movement etc which she moves a shoulder with big back and forth according to the rhythm looks like the first indications itself of the energy which the life which transcended ones like the emotion and the feelings, has.
Nevertheless, a smiling face which she now and then shows is even artless and innocent, as if it is not one which was turned toward someone but one which a girl who enjoys the world of only her own, shows. For performing such a body expression which the lively youthfulness and the matured composure intermingle strangely, the teens have not sufficient experience yet. Even if saying so, but if they are its second half even if being their twenties, the tint will come different also. It may be the "taste" which she can flavor because the generation of present Ando is the first half of her twenties. I am sure that present Miki Ando has the self-confidence to herself, which she could not have even if wanting to have it in her teen ages.
At the time before the Turin Olympics when the media had been inciting her, saying, "the quadruple jump!, the quadruple jump!", she used to say, "I intend to retire from eligible skater in about 20 years old because I think that I can not win to Mao or Yu-Na Kim after 4 years".
In those days, saying honestly, I had not imagined at all that such a girl who was good at the jumps becomes a fascinating adult performer like this. Because the fact like this happens, it is difficult to know the figure skating. The player sometimes achieves the transformation which exceeded the expectation of the fan. Of course, it sometimes becomes a result which disappoints one's expectations, too, in fact there are much more such cases than the good cases, but as for Miki Ando, the flower bloomed bigly in the direction where a lot of Japanese fans didn't expect.
Most of the general fans are thinking at heart that the figure skating is not pleasant, if there is not a jump. However an expert says, "The jump is no more than a part of the figure skating ", the jump is most splendid flower in the figure skating after all. However, the most of what crosses our mind is not always a jump, but a slight movement, a gesture, a blink-of-an-eye pose, etc, when imagining "the impressive scene" of the past able skater who went down in history of the figure skating after the time passes. Miki Ando who had been famous as the genius jumper, too, is going to take part in the family of such the able skaters. By this exhibition program, Ando showed to the audience that she has such ability.
Because the coach who made the charm of Miki Ando flower, was not a Japanese but Nikolai Morozov who came from Russia, I have complicated feelings a little. However, it is not a very active feelings.
If the Japanese has raised Ando while taking a leading part in the project without Morozov, she may have been remaining the player of the natural ability of jumps who is challenging the quadruple Salchow as ever.
I become such a feelings all the more, when I remember an attitude of the media. They ask her a question, saying, "Do you attempt the quad jump in the free skating?", every time doing an interview, and they had made only the story of the big skill like the quad an article still, without losing interest, although the rule of ISU had been laying siege to the jumper.
As the performer to express with the body, including the charming looks, Ando emits the feeling of the one and only existence. As for her, there is nothing to complain of as far as the expressive power is concerned, but there is somewhat dissatisfied part, too, yet as for "the skating skill" of the basics.
For example, in the first part, she is coming skating all along in the spiral position of the one leg, then replaces a leg and enters spin.
This part is just part which can appreciate "the skating skill".
Of course, it is stunning even to be only able to perform such an element, but I feel uneasy because the blade is unstable somewhat when she is skating with the spiral.
The commentator sometimes praises well, saying, "He is skating relaxedly as if he is being united with the ice" as for the skating of the Takahashi or Kozuka, but I wish that she mastered a skating skill to catch ice tightly like that.
In case of the competition program, it may be to satisfy the requirement of the element but her body is often apt to become a posture leaned forward extremely in the spiral, but, as for this exhibition program, there is not such the defect at all and the posture and the pose are very beautiful.
I can recognize that she is skating to the music politely, but, if, as for the part where she is merely skating, she had a suitable contrast moreover in the speed as well as her blade was stable, I had nothing to say...
However, it may be too demanding somewhat. As for the basic technique of such a skating, it is not always the one "to make progress if training for a long time". As for the player who is good at a basic skating, mostly the skill is pretty complete already in about 17 years old. No, actually, it may be younger. It may be just similar to the technique of the musical instrument like a violin that "the technical peak" is early.
The taste may deepen if playing the violin for many years, but, if there is a gap between the basic techniques, it may not close even if any year spends. As for the figure skating, too, it may be the same.
Of course, I don't aim at discussing that Miki Ando who had won the Worlds Champion is poor at the basic skill. In some cases, the part which is not at the textbook becomes taste, too, and Miki Ando is greeting a ripening stage as Miki Ando. A lot of persons may think that there is not any kind of problem as for Ando's skating. Even as for the part of the very basic skating however, I think that she still may be able to improve herself, because she has the ability to have polished the quality of various elements so far.
Miki Ando; Concierto de Aranjuez
Ａ masterpiece of Miki Ando, the exhibition program "Concierto de Aranjez"