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  1. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by geena View Post
    Quick correction-- Rick Gentile (and the Nagano Olympics) were part of CBS' coverage, not ABC.

    In that particular case, what I think he was saying was that the CBS crew had invested more time in Michelle (as the gold medal favorite) than Tara-- via fluff pieces, research, etc.-- so the natural inclination was for the CBS crew to root the one they felt they "knew" better. But at the end of the day, the producer's job is to tell the story that unfolded-- whatever it happens to be. I think Gentile feels they he did that successfully. And the director's job is to present each skater's program in the best light, regardless of who it is (I should add that Bob Fishman, who directed in '98, made no mention of having a favorite. To be honest, he directs SO many different sporting things in a year I don't think he has time to pick favorites!)

    As for Meg Streeter-- while she clearly formed opinions of certain skaters as she went along, I think she by and large she kept those opinions to herself (at least at the time). The one she was more concerned with was Dick Button-- remember that she once talked to him about toning down his comments so as not to hurt the skaters' feelings... even though she later felt that she'd made a mistake!

    You make a really good point about the whole idea of broadcasters getting so invested in the skaters! With so many of them admittedly in love with this sport, I guess it's fair to call it a job hazard at times
    Sorry Rick! I guess the point everyone was trying to make is that it is very much an "insider" sport. Controlled by a relatively small group of people who know each other.

    Television and media on the other hand need to be constantly re-inventing themselves to stay relevant. Skating can't change that fast.

  2. #22

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    Skaters are always being criticized for "not thinking outside the box" when it comes to programs. Maybe the television producers should follow their own advice. How about having skaters audition for skating shows?

  3. #23
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    Which sort of skating shows did you mean... the Disson-types? Kind of the only "shows" remaining for now (in the U.S. anyway), as "Skating w/the Stars" was cancelled...

  4. #24

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    Sounds like manleywoman's skatecast interview with Doug Wilson would tie in nicely with this book. Congrats!

  5. #25

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    Quote Originally Posted by geena View Post
    Which sort of skating shows did you mean... the Disson-types? Kind of the only "shows" remaining for now (in the U.S. anyway), as "Skating w/the Stars" was cancelled...
    I was thinking more along the lines of the shows Toller Cranston and John Curry used to do. They didn't pick the skaters for their competition credentials but rather for their performing ability.

    Stephanie Rosenthal was quite innovative with her hip-hop numbers, or in the more classic mode Denis Petchukov's Fallen Angels with Johnny and Melissa...

    I would think if you auditioned people you could find more skaters like that out there and you wouldn't have to pay them six figure salaries.

  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by LilJen View Post
    Sounds like manleywoman's skatecast interview with Doug Wilson would tie in nicely with this book. Congrats!
    In case anyone wants a direct link to the Doug Wilson podcast, SkateCast #16.
    In my spare time, I like to interview figure skating legends.

  7. #27
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    Manleywoman, do you remember the date of your Doug Wilson interview? I did the first of several with him in spring 2008, and I think I remember him saying at the start of one of them that he'd just been on the phone with you...

  8. #28
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    It was posted June 2008, so it wouldn't have been too long before then. It usually say in the interview the exact date, but can't listen right now to get it for you.
    In my spare time, I like to interview figure skating legends.

  9. #29

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    manleywoman, I checked for you:
    Mr Wilson was interviewed on May 16, 2008.

  10. #30
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    Yep, that was right around the time I started talking to him for [I]Skating on Air[I]. Mr. Wilson had just retired a couple months ahead of that (with Worlds 2008, the last Worlds shown on ABC/ESPN).

    Such a great guy with a wealth of stories!

  11. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by skatesindreams View Post
    manleywoman, I checked for you:
    Mr Wilson was interviewed on May 16, 2008.
    Thanks.
    In my spare time, I like to interview figure skating legends.

  12. #32
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    This book is for anyone whose heart used to beat faster at the words, "Spanning the globe to bring you the constant variety of sport...the thrill of victory, and the agony of defeat". Some of my favorite parts were learning about the innovations the ABC, CBS, and NBC broadcast teams invented to cover figure skating, why the coverage of annual skating at Nationals and Worlds and the Olympics changed from one network to another, and how various broadcasters began their jobs. This book also really clarifies why skating coverage has waned on television. The many tidbits from Susie Wynne, Traci Wilson, Janet Lynn, Terry Gannon (just a few of a huge cast of characters) were great, as well as all the Dick Button anecdotes. This book isn't overly gossipy and certainly is about broadcasting as much as skating. It is exceptionally well written and I found it fascinating.

  13. #33
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    Oh Nashville Dancer, you make me so happy

    If you ever feel like copying/pasting what you wrote here to SOA's Amazon page, you have my blessing! (It is still looking for its first review last time I checked.)

    Thanks for sharing!!

    geena, AKA Kelli Lawrence (the author)

  14. #34

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    I received my copy and read it. It's an extraordinarily well-written and fascinating tome, especially for us 'old timers' who were glued to our TV sets watching ABC WWS skating coverage since the Peggy Fleming/Kauffmans/Tim Wood era. Thank you, Ms Lawrence!
    Dick Button Historical Quote of the Month: "Good for you, Lucinda Ruh!"

  15. #35
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    Thank YOU Frau Muller!

    By the way, enormous credit goes to those who agreed to be interviewed for Skating on Air... every one of them had interesting stories to share!

  16. #36
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    Done! (last night)

    Quote Originally Posted by geena View Post
    Oh Nashville Dancer, you make me so happy

    If you ever feel like copying/pasting what you wrote here to SOA's Amazon page, you have my blessing! (It is still looking for its first review last time I checked.)

    Thanks for sharing!!

    geena, AKA Kelli Lawrence (the author)

  17. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by geena View Post
    Thank YOU Frau Muller!

    By the way, enormous credit goes to those who agreed to be interviewed for Skating on Air... every one of them had interesting stories to share!
    I've tried several times to get Terry Gannon on my podcast. I even was given his cell phone number, and it was him o the VM. But he has never returned a call or email. So kudos to you for getting him!
    In my spare time, I like to interview figure skating legends.

  18. #38

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    I'm awaiting delivery of the book; and am looking forward to reading it,

  19. #39
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    Nashville Dancer: Saw it!! Thank you!!

    Manleywoman: Terry was not easy to pin down for an interview, and in fact we were supposed to do a follow-up that never materialized. He was very nice and easy to talk to when it DID work out, though...

  20. #40
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    Signing copies of "Skating on Air" at Indy Challenge!

    Hi all--

    For anyone that is attending the Indy Challenge tomorrow (Saturday)... just wanted to let you know that I will have a table there on behalf of this book, and will sign copies if you like. Please drop by and say hello!

    And let me know how the pairs are doing out on the ice; I was hoping to cover the event for my State of the Skate blog but seems unlikely now :-(

    Thanks!

    Kelli Lawrence
    Author of "Skating on Air"

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