Interesting article about Toller Cranston. He also has some interesting views about the music chosen by modern day skaters for their programs and COP/IJS. The article reads:-
Skating has changed dramatically since this skater’s [(i.e. Cranston's)] heyday, and not necessarily for the better. At one time, certain music was associated with certain skaters. No more. “It began with the likes of Elvis Stojko,” [Cranston] says. “This isn’t a criticism: they were more interested in another rotation in the air than choosing music that was a creative launching pad.” Patrick Chan, the 2011 World Champion, is “a million times better than I ever was,” says Cranston, but the music he skates to is completely forgettable. “It seems to me the music now is second to technical abilities on the ice. That’s how you get marked. There’s no reason to be as bent upon being as creative as I was, because there’s no benefit to that. I was lucky enough to be in an age where the actual music you skated to, say for a world championship, was kept secret. It was a big surprise.”
At the heart of the debate yet again is COP/IJS. Its removed a lot of the artistry, musicality, and choreography from skating programs. Accordingly, I agree with Cranston that, as he puts it: "the music now is second to technical abilities on the ice." Skating should not be just about technical ability. The music is integral to a fully rounded and properly packaged program. A skaters artistry and musicality, and their ability to interpret a program, can only be fully realised with good choreography and music. The advent of COP has mean't that programs have been asphyxiated and stifled by an over-abundance of technical content, which has mean't that there far less room for artistry. Result: more monotonous and tedious programs than there used to be (with less choreography, and more and more competitors just skating through programs without paying any attention to the music, or trying to interpret what is behind the program). That in my opinion is why audiences and public interest have fallen, and the reason why TV coverage has dropped off. No doubt the COP supporters will disagree. But, if the spectators are going to return and if TV company's are going to start broadcasting events again, then COP/IJS needs to go. The ISU would have been better off fixing the old 6.0 system, rather than throwing the baby out with the bathwater as it were.
Its an old debate that Toller has reopened. However, with public interest and TV coverage at an all time low, it remains a debate of the utmost importance if the decline in figure skating is to be reversed. Here are a few of the old articles:-