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  1. #1
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    Questions for Peter Oppegard

    Hi all. This is the final thread of three I'm posting tonight in which I'm opening the floor for questions to some of my interviewees! THe PSA COnference is in my hometown this weekend so I'm hoping to get in as many interviews as I can with so much skating greatness in one place.

    Peter Oppegard and I will hopefully get to do one, though his schedule is really tight for the weekend, If not in person, we'll do it by phone soon after.

    FOr quick background on him, his Wikipedia bio:
    Peter Oppegard (born August 23, 1959) is an American retired pair skater and coach. With his partner Jill Watson, he is the 1988 Olympic bronze medalist and a three-time U.S. national champion.
    Oppegard initially paired with Vicki Heasley. He began competing with Watson in 1985. In their career, Watson and Oppegard won three national titles, a world bronze medal, an Olympic bronze medal, and various other medals. During Watson and Oppegard's free skate at the 1988 Olympics, a photographer dropped his camera bag onto the ice and an usher walked onto the ice to pick it up while the pair was performing a death spiral on the other side of the rink.

    Oppegard later skated with Cindy Landry for a short time.

    His skaters have won 10 national singles and pairs titles. The Professional Skaters Association and US Figure Skating has named Oppegard "Choreographer of the Year" and "Coach of the Year".

    Jill Watson and Peter Oppegard were inducted into the U.S. Figure Skating Hall of Fame in 2004.

    He coaches at the East West Ice Palace in southern California. He is married to Karen Kwan, sister of world champion figure skater Michelle Kwan, and they have 2 daughters, Olivia Colett Oppegard and Sophia Oppegard.
    If you have questions, please let me know here. Thanks!
    In my spare time, I like to interview figure skating legends.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by manleywoman View Post


    If you have questions, please let me know here. Thanks!
    I would like to know about the miraculous mandarin for Michelle Kwan. Was it developed to replace her other LP at Worlds? Was Kwan told to dump it?

  3. #3

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    Do his daughters skate? Do they want to compete some day?
    What was coaching Yu Na like? What did his think of her long program that year, which I think was her best. Was he disappointed she never skated it to its full potential?
    Did he and Yu Na part on good terms?
    I heard that Evan is working with Karen Kwan. Is he also involved in Evan's coaching?

  4. #4

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    How focused was he on getting to Albertville?

    What does he think IJS did to pairs?

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    Loved his pairs choreo for Stiegler/ Zimmerman many years ago! Is he planning to do more pairs choreo, or does he work more with singles these days?

    Was it love at first sight when he met Karen, or did they grow on each other?

    I'm sure you will ask about his Olympic bronze medal win with Jill Watson and what that experience was like.

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    What is his suggestion on how to build a lady skater who will dominate figure skating like his sister in law, Michelle Kwan? I am sure USA is waiting for the next American Queen of Figure Skating.
    Prosperity makes friends, adversity tries them. – Publilius Syrus

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    Watson and Oppergard performed one of the most spectacular and dangerous pair lifts I have ever seen. How did the two of them invent "The Swoop?"

    What part did Oppergard play in helping Inoue and Baldwin get the throw triple axel?

    Also, what was it like to work with Naomi Nari Nam? Her short program with Themistocles Leftheris from the 2006 US Nationals was absolutely brilliant.

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    Quote Originally Posted by aftershocks View Post
    Loved his pairs choreo for Stiegler/ Zimmerman many years ago!
    Just a reminder of one of the this genius choreo, one of the best programs ever, IMO.

    "The Sorcerer's Apprentice" - 1997
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Ag8yPacfJA

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    When you began to coach Yu-Na, didn't you feel any kind of pressure from coaching the reigning Olympic champion?
    What did you most focus on while coaching her in terms of technical and artistic aspects?

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    Quote Originally Posted by skatesindreams View Post
    Just a reminder of one of the this genius choreo, one of the best programs ever, IMO.

    "The Sorcerer's Apprentice" - 1997
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Ag8yPacfJA
    Yep! Thanks for posting the vid skatesindreams.

    I was really disappointed when Stephanie injured her shoulder and this team broke up.


    Manleywoman, perhaps you could also ask Peter what the inspiration was for this program, and what it was like working with Stephanie and John (they were both young newbies with great potential). John definitely was such a stand-out in this ... he was on fire!

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