The competition runs through Sept. 6, and the live final is slated for Dec. 1 in Washington, D.C. The competitors in the champions division are Yebin Mok, Eliot Halverson, Kate McSwain, Katherine Hill, Stephanie Roth, Nanoha Sato and Justine Kelleher. There is also a "grassroots" division for younger competitors. The top two finishers in each division will compete in the final.
There are five challenges: ethnic dance/global cultures; a program using a piece of cloth; a piece to the song "Oh Earth, Oh Earth, Return;" a mythological person/creature; and a piece to music for a solo instrument from the baroque, classical or romantic periods. All the skaters are instructed to wear basic black practice wear. Each competitor will be assigned a mentor.
Judges include Kurt Browning, Sara Kawahara, Caryn Kadavy, Kim Navarro, Brent Bommentre, Anita Hartshorn, Frank Sweiding, Craig Heath, Scott Williams, Rohene Ward and Dan Hollander.