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  1. #121

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    [QUOTE=Mayra;3836898]
    Either you admire Gold's jumping ability, speed, power and potential or you don't [QUOTE]

    Right on, her strengths are quite obvious , no need to make excuses if you don't like her. She also performed the most technically proficient US ladies' program in over 20 years, so that's something else to like, or maybe get even a bit excited about

    I like Liza and Zijun too, and while I agree they are more musical than Gracie, they are much weaker skaters . She makes them look like they are relatively standing still, she's stronger and she covers the rink so much better than they do. That really makes an impression live, while hands and facial gestures really show up more on TV. Which is part of the reason why judges (international and US) give her decent PCS even when she makes mistakes. Really, it's not the 'Gold for Gold' PR machine, her 'All-American' looks, or some vast conspiracy of collusion. For me Adelina is a total package, she's got the skating skills, the jumps, the posture, the artistry and a great need to be voidy and inventive too. But she's a bit of a headcase too. So everybody has something to work on.
    Last edited by FunnyBut; 02-13-2013 at 04:34 AM.

  2. #122

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sasha'sSpins View Post
    I can't decide if the 'ta da' arms are more because of the choreography she's been given thus far?
    perhaps. i guess they are in keeping with the boob shimmy in the sp in terms of being hideous. what is her LP music? I have watched each of her competitions through out the year, and the music has failed to stick to my memory.

  3. #123

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sylvia View Post
    Wagner's tweet on Feb. 7:


    ETA that Maia Shibutani tweeted this female group photo from the Four Continents closing banquet yesterday:
    "I miss these girls already! @christina_gao @agneszawadzki @GraceEGold #4CC2013" http://pic.twitter.com/xx2eYDd4
    What beautiful young ladies, all of them! Agnes looks so much better with her hair down. Is Gracie really so much more tiny than Agnes/Christina, or are the others in higher heels, or perhaps the camera angle?

    I've always thought that if the Olympic contending skater and the Harvard gig didn't work out, Christina could do well as a model. She is so stunningly pretty. Poor thing, so few opportunities in life

  4. #124
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    Gracie Gold's sp music: Hernando's Hideaway; lp music: Life is Beautiful (Jeremy Abbott used this for his lp 2010 - 2011)

    I don't see anything terrible about Gracie's music choices this season. I'm sure she will be challenged with better choreography and perhaps more interesting music choices as her skating continues to develop.

    What music do Gracie's critics think she should skate to?


    Quote Originally Posted by FunnyBut View Post
    What beautiful young ladies, all of them! Agnes looks so much better with her hair down. Is Gracie really so much more tiny than Agnes/Christina, or are the others in higher heels, or perhaps the camera angle?

    I've always thought that if the Olympic contending skater and the Harvard gig didn't work out, Christina could do well as a model. She is so stunningly pretty. Poor thing, so few opportunities in life
    Yes, they all look gorgeous and relaxed in this photo. Agnes has got huge pretty eyes, and a distinctive heart-shaped face.


    ETA:
    Yes, perhaps Agnes is wearing heels and Gracie isn't, because they appear to be about the same height on the podium at the awards ceremony in Omaha.

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/sports...ships/1872461/
    Last edited by aftershocks; 02-13-2013 at 06:04 AM.

  5. #125
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndyWarhol View Post
    perhaps. i guess they are in keeping with the boob shimmy in the sp in terms of being hideous. what is her LP music? I have watched each of her competitions through out the year, and the music has failed to stick to my memory.
    It's from "Life is Beautiful". I've never seen the film but I read about it. I believe it was mentioned a few times on this board that that is where the marching bit (which I can't stand) in Gracie's choreo comes from.

    @aftershocks I don't have a problem with the music choices for Gracie's programs. It's really the choreography which is dreadful imo.

  6. #126
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sylvia View Post
    ETA that Maia Shibutani tweeted this female group photo from the Four Continents closing banquet yesterday:
    "I miss these girls already! @christina_gao @agneszawadzki @GraceEGold #4CC2013" http://pic.twitter.com/xx2eYDd4
    Pretteeee laydeeez!

    Gao is going to be so as she gets older.

    And I still can't get over how much Gracie looks like my dear friend Rosie. Absolute doppelgangers. She has my support for this reason.

  7. #127
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    Well, thanks to most for not taking offense to my inquiry; a few people got snippy but that was to be expected . I wasn't being passive-aggressive...I was just curious if perhaps I was missing something others were not.

    As for now Gracie's skating does nothing for me but I do think her jumps are amazing when she nails them. My main thing is I really want her to be a full package skater; not just a jumping bean with a pretty face. It's obvious it's going to take her a few years to get there (assuming she can) so for now I'm just going to have to be patient and curb my annoyance with the media regarding her. The way Phil and the rest go on about her, you'd think she was this well-rounded skater and she's not yet.

    I really do hope she has strong performances at worlds. The judges like her when she hits her jumps so hopefully she'll be able to control her nerves and deliver two decent skates...

    That picture of all four ladies is beautiful! I wonder how close all of the girls are? From what I've seen from backstage video, Ashley and Agnes seem to be really good friends and I think Christina and Mirai are kinda close...I think Christina is also pretty close with Maia too. I'm always curious about how skaters interact with each other when they aren't competing against one another. People used to make a big fuss about Michelle vs Tara back in the day b/c they were so competitive with each other. I haven't sensed a real "rivalry" in US skating in years, though I think that's b/c the top skaters seems to flip flop and shuffle every year.
    Last edited by kwanatic; 02-13-2013 at 04:00 PM.

  8. #128
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    Exactly: there is no time for a rivalry to brew, and thus there isn't one.

  9. #129
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    ^I would just like to add my $.02 re Gracie.

    She's fast and powerful, and her jumps (when she's on) are among the best in the world. Her spins (lots of LV 4s), fw, and even her spiral have improved markedly this year. But since her elements by themselves are so good, it probably stands out even more that her choreography and interpretation are lacking. There's something pageant-y about her skating - 'OK. Smile right now. thrust your arm in the air here. Boob shimmy. check. Rockette kick, check.'

    Now, I see both sides of the argument - Gracie is new to the Senior ranks and she deserves a break. For all of her inconsistencies, she's generally transitioned well into the current pressure cooker of Senior ladies. OTOH, her peers like Adelina and Liza are doing a better job of being a 'presence' on the ice outside of technical maneuvers in many ways. Someone brought up Sasha and the Kween in their teen years. So, a young skater CAN effectively do it. Maybe, Ouriashev is just a good tech coach and she needs outside help on packaging?

  10. #130
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    Quote Originally Posted by olympic View Post
    ^I would just like to add my $.02 re Gracie.

    She's fast and powerful, and her jumps (when she's on) are among the best in the world. Her spins (lots of LV 4s), fw, and even her spiral have improved markedly this year. But since her elements by themselves are so good, it probably stands out even more that her choreography and interpretation are lacking. There's something pageant-y about her skating - 'OK. Smile right now. thrust your arm in the air here. Boob shimmy. check. Rockette kick, check.'

    Now, I see both sides of the argument - Gracie is new to the Senior ranks and she deserves a break. For all of her inconsistencies, she's generally transitioned well into the current pressure cooker of Senior ladies. OTOH, her peers like Adelina and Liza are doing a better job of being a 'presence' on the ice outside of technical maneuvers in many ways. Someone brought up Sasha and the Kween in their teen years. So, a young skater CAN effectively do it. Maybe, Ouriashev is just a good tech coach and she needs outside help on packaging?
    ITA. Gracie is not just a jumping bean. Her spins, for example, are really world class. It's even more amazing if you compare her spins now to the ones she was doing a year ago. My hope is that she will spend the summer working as hard on her choreography as she did with her spins during the previous one. If she can keep her head together, the TES score will be huge, possibly unbeatable. Now she needs to focus on the PCS. I think her team is aware of this, but we'll see.

  11. #131
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    ^^Her spins are nicely centered and fast, though I would like to see her work on her extension a little more. And please, please someone make her do a classic layback! I really hate how the US ladies are getting lazy with the layback like the Russians. But then again if you can get the points without doing a classic position (which is tougher), why bother? Meh.

    Who is Gracie's choreographer? It's not her coach is it? I'd like to see Gracie work with Lori, but NOT in terms of choreography. She needs to find someone else for that b/c with the exception of Carolina and Mao, Lori's choreography is pretty blah now. But Lori could teach Gracie about listening to the music, flowing with it and feeling it...that whole ooze thing.

    Aside from consistency and some more mature choreography, that's all Gracie's missing at this point.

  12. #132

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    Gold's choreographer is Scott Brown. He also choreographed for Agnes Zawadzki (FS), Angela Wang (SP), and Ashley Cain this season. ETA: Brown choreographed Mariah Bell's programs before this season (I consider her one of the more naturally musical skaters).
    Last edited by Sylvia; 02-13-2013 at 04:19 PM.
    "Randy [Starkman (1960-April 16, 2012)] lived by the same motto as the rest of us. The Olympics isn’t every four years, it’s every single day. He just got it." --Canadian Olympic kayaker Adam van Koeverden

  13. #133
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    'Life is Beautiful' is a powerful movie, very emotional. It makes me cry to watch it even as a repeat. For those who don't know, it's the story of a father who uses games to shield his young son from the horrors of the holocaust, even while in a concentration camp.

    It's a real stretch for a very dramatic, expressive skater to interpret. Not sure what Team Gracie were thinking when they took it on. I wonder if she had seen it. She's not ready for that type of music.Oh well, Maybe she can watch it in London the night before her LP and it will draw some emotion from her. That would help her PCS a bit, seriously.
    Last edited by olympic; 02-13-2013 at 04:30 PM.

  14. #134
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    Quote Originally Posted by olympic View Post
    ^I would just like to add my $.02 re Gracie.

    She's fast and powerful, and her jumps (when she's on) are among the best in the world. Her spins (lots of LV 4s), fw, and even her spiral have improved markedly this year. But since her elements by themselves are so good, it probably stands out even more that her choreography and interpretation are lacking. There's something pageant-y about her skating - 'OK. Smile right now. thrust your arm in the air here. Boob shimmy. check. Rockette kick, check.'

    Now, I see both sides of the argument - Gracie is new to the Senior ranks and she deserves a break. For all of her inconsistencies, she's generally transitioned well into the current pressure cooker of Senior ladies. OTOH, her peers like Adelina and Liza are doing a better job of being a 'presence' on the ice outside of technical maneuvers in many ways. Someone brought up Sasha and the Kween in their teen years. So, a young skater CAN effectively do it. Maybe, Ouriashev is just a good tech coach and she needs outside help on packaging?
    I think a good deal of Oksana, Sasha, Michelle, Adelina, and Liza's performance -and artistic qualities are innate imo rather than acquired. Some qualities simply can't be taught but I do think with lots of hard work one can markedly improve especially in expression, line, extension, toe point and so on.

  15. #135
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sasha'sSpins View Post
    I think a good deal of Oksana, Sasha, Michelle, Adelina, and Liza's performance -and artistic qualities are innate imo rather than acquired. Some qualities simply can't be taught but I do think with lots of hard work one can markedly improve especially in expression, line, extension, toe point and so on.
    Still, I think a simple, genuine interest in artistry can go a long way, even if a skater is not 'artistic' at the moment. It may be that he or she hasn't had any decent exposure to art?

    This may sound silly but using myself as an example - I never though about Opera, but once I met my current BF and he took me to several, I got the meaning of Opera and could feel its passion coursing through me during any performance. I don't know how that would translate to a skater, but maybe not having exposure to art might hinder artistic growth. Gracie has nice extension and is very capable of good toe point and acquiring great line, so maybe she needs people around her that 'handle' her less (that's what it looks like anyway) and allow her room to 'feel' music by letting her experience it personally.

    But, Worlds is in less than a month, so short term, she just needs to bring together all that she has in her arsenal at this point, hope the PCS gets carried along somewhat by a Nationals-like performance in both the SP and LP!

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    Personally, I'd rather not have a repeat of her Nationals SP at worlds.

  17. #137
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    Quote Originally Posted by RD View Post
    Personally, I'd rather not have a repeat of her Nationals SP at worlds.
    erm yes. I was writing too fast. I meant to say well executed performances in the SP and LP, with the LP like at Nationals

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sasha'sSpins View Post
    I think a good deal of Oksana, Sasha, Michelle, Adelina, and Liza's performance -and artistic qualities are innate imo rather than acquired. Some qualities simply can't be taught but I do think with lots of hard work one can markedly improve especially in expression, line, extension, toe point and so on.
    That's very true. Look at Irina. She made improvements to her presentation but Irina was not a graceful or lyrical skater. Whenever she tried it came off looking forced and disingenuous. Eventually she gave up trying and played to her strengths which, to me, was much better than her pretending to be something she was not.

    It's possible that Gracie won't be a very lyrical or expressive skater. As of now I don't see any innate artistic qualities about her. If that's the case, she and her team will have to develop a style of skating that works for her.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kwanatic View Post
    Well, thanks to most for not taking offense to my inquiry; a few people got snippy but that was to be expected . I wasn't being passive-aggressive...I was just curious if perhaps I was missing something others were not.

    As for now Gracie's skating does nothing for me but I do think her jumps are amazing when she nails them. My main thing is I really want her to be a full package skater; not just a jumping bean with a pretty face. It's obvious it's going to take her a few years to get there (assuming she can) so for now I'm just going to have to be patient and curb my annoyance with the media regarding her. The way Phil and the rest go on about her, you'd think she was this well-rounded skater and she's not yet.

    I really do hope she has strong performances at worlds. The judges like her when she hits her jumps so hopefully she'll be able to control her nerves and deliver two decent skates...

    That picture of all four ladies is beautiful! I wonder how close all of the girls are? From what I've seen from backstage video, Ashley and Agnes seem to be really good friends and I think Christina and Mirai are kinda close...I think Christina is also pretty close with Maia too. I'm always curious about how skaters interact with each other when they aren't competing against one another. People used to make a big fuss about Michelle vs Tara back in the day b/c they were so competitive with each other. I haven't sensed a real "rivalry" in US skating in years, though I think that's b/c the top skaters seems to flip flop and shuffle every year.

    Well from your comments, I guess you kinda do like Gracie, really like her. Sounds as if you're frustrated with the media hyping her. Yes, better to ignore that, and indeed, practice patience. Figure skating is never a slam dunk.

    From your last paragraph, sounds like you're eager for a rivalry to bloom. On-ice rivalries are great, but off the ice they're just so not necessary and IMHO, detrimental.
    Last edited by aftershocks; 02-13-2013 at 06:39 PM.

  20. #140
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    Quote Originally Posted by aftershocks View Post
    Well from your comments, I guess you kinda do like Gracie, really like her. Sounds as if you're frustrated with the media hyping her. Yes, better to ignore that, and indeed, practice patience. Figure skating is never a slam dunk.

    From your last paragraph, sounds like you're eager for a rivalry to bloom. On-ice rivalries are great, but off the ice they're just so not necessary and IMHO, detrimental.
    I do like Gracie! I never said I didn't! I'm annoyed with the hype simply b/c she's a strong jumper but not much else even though the media is hailing her like she's ready to beat the best in the world even though she hasn't really accomplished much yet. Given her high level of technical content it would suck if she never developed the artistic side of her skating. I love a balance of both and right now she's all technical. But, patience is a virtue...we'll just have to see.

    I'd love a rivalry! Not the ugly side of it...I want the competitive side. The reason the ladies field is so deep in Russia and Japan right now is b/c of the level of skating at home. The competition in the US is getting tougher, but think about what the competition would be like if the girls from Russia had to compete against the US girls...

    Their technical level is much more demanding which means in order to move up, those skaters have to produce the goods. We need a rivalry/competitive atmosphere like that in the US.

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