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  1. #21

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    The article had this line:

    (Women are strictly referred to as "ladies"; the word women only appears once in the USFS rulebook.)
    In reality, in the US, female skaters are still referred to as "girls" and males as "boys" by a lot of people in the sport, no matter how old the competitor is. The culture in USFS is a bit old fashioned. It wasn't that long ago that, in order to get into the big figure skating clubs, you had to formally apply, go to an interview with your parents, for which you wore a suit and, if female, gloves. That "looking just so" even if one wasn't "just so" attitude still exists.
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  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by GarrAarghHrumph View Post
    At his age, the classes in my area are normally 50/50 boys and girls.
    I agree- I taught toddlers skating (ages 2-5) and they were pretty much equal boy/girl in the class. In the older kids classes, it was maybe 40/60 for boy/girl until basic 5. After basic 5, the boys became more rare. Although our rink has a decent number of boys in freestyle, for the most part boys wanted to learn to skate, not figure skate.

    In reality, in the US, female skaters are still referred to as "girls" and males as "boys" by a lot of people in the sport, no matter how old the competitor is.
    Really? I've never heard girls and boys, except in the case of juvenile and below. Once they get to intermediate they are ladies and men. (But NOT women! )
    Last edited by Skittl1321; 01-31-2014 at 03:03 PM.

  3. #23

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    Recently on TV, I've heard both Ryan Bradley and Johnny Weir refer to male competitors as "boys." They've said things like: "The other boys in this competition are all doing quads." Or something like that. It's definitely a little jarring, to my ear, anyhow. I prefer "men".

  4. #24
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    Here's an interview with Frank Carroll where he also uses the "boys" and "girls" terminology to refer to skaters who are clearly adults:

    https://sites.google.com/site/reutsk...ws/2011carroll

  5. #25

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    I've noticed it, too, particularly with older coaches, and particularly when discussing pair or dance teams. They'll refer to what the "boy" or the "girl" is doing.

  6. #26

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    Yes, we've been having these discussions for years on this board.
    However, "middle America" may actually read -- and learn something from -- the article.

    It struck a good balance between "general interest" and "academic", IMO.

  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ziggy
    As for traditional ideas of masculinity being preferred in male skaters, the article mentions it many times throughout.
    But the author didn’t elaborate on why it’s unhealthy to keep traditional ideas of masculinity regardless of one’s sexual orientation. It’s a disservice to constantly reinforce the idea that less masculine is gay, when it’s not. And even if it is, there's nothing wrong with feathers and sparkles as another poster mentioned.

    Vash01 raised an excellent point. How come all this homophobia and gender issue talk isn’t that much of an issue in other countries? We have had plenty of sequence-costume Russian male skaters in years past who have won many titles. The Asian male skaters have been gaining ground too. Heck, even the Russian tween female skaters are beating us. At the end of the day, it comes down to delivering the goods consistently...and not about one's sexual orientation.

    I wouldn’t think BB be under marked had he come out during his eligible days, the same for Johnny. Likewise, I don’t think their programs would be less or more “masculine”.
    Last edited by Fan123; 01-31-2014 at 04:55 PM.

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by reese View Post
    I was amazed by this statement:
    Figure skating judges offer input on costumes, personal life, hair and makeup, music choice. With so much interaction, impartiality becomes increasingly challenging.

    The remark about not using "strange edgy" music because the judges are conservative, finally solved the question I have been asking myself for years. WHY do all skaters use the same classical music thousands of times over? How many more Scheherezade or Carmen routines do we have to see? (On the other hand, the Irish music Jason Brown used is definitely out of the ordinary and he seems to be gaining good scores and great popularity)

    Speaking as someone who lives in Europe I think Europeans are every bit as homophobic as Americans (maybe with the excluson of Scandanavia) and definitely, in Italy at least, men's skating is considered a gay sport and not even very "athletic" (!!!)
    Last edited by ItalianFan; 01-31-2014 at 06:57 PM.

  9. #29
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    Riverdance is totally overused.
    Congratulations 2014 World Ice Dance Champions Anna Cappellini & Luca Lanotte!!!

  10. #30

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    Quote Originally Posted by reese View Post
    Hey, Johnny makes the cover of Newsweek!!! I'm not too happy about the big "HATE" superimposed on the photo but it's JOHNNY WEIR on the COVER of NEWSWEEK. Wooohoooo!
    Dick Button Historical Quote of the Month: "Good for you, Lucinda Ruh!"

  11. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlueRidge View Post
    Riverdance is totally overused.
    Really? I never heard it used before.

  12. #32

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    I think part of the music choices is pandering to the judges. One of my skaters tried "cutting edge" music for a test and the (older) judges HATED it and wrote on the sheets volumes about how much they disliked it (it was Joe Satriani for crying out loud). In ice dance I always refer to the guy's and the girls steps. Never thought that it was degrading but I am from the older generation!
    "awwww....shades of Janet Lynn" - Dick Button on anyone who makes more than one mistake in their program.

  13. #33
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    It is impossible to say exactly how many elite figure skaters are gay, since so few have come out publicly. Former figure skater and judge Jon Jackson wrote in a 2006 piece for The Advocate, "at least seven of the 14 male Olympic figure skating medalists from the past 20 years are known in certain circles to be interested in other men. In fact, in at least five countries the entire men's singles figure skating team is made up of gay men (albeit some 'teams' are exactly one man)." That same year, figure skating expert Lorrie Kim wrote, "Unofficial insider estimates range from 25 percent to nearly 50 percent. But unbelievably, in 2006, Galindo remains the only top-level skater to have come out while Olympic-eligible."
    And yet some like to pretend that the gays are rare.

  14. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by ItalianFan View Post
    Really? I never heard it used before.
    It may have been a few years, but it was popular for a while.

    Riverdance programs I remember:

    Bourne & Kraatz 1998 FD
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nduwt9lgSks

    Chengjiang Li - 1999 FS
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GRGSznX0qcc

    Robinson & Breen 1997 FD
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qUxAqUm7uZU



    And there was an Elvis Stojko tour in 1998 or 1999 where there was a big Riverdance number (he had a nice solo to the slower music - more flowing edges than he usually had).

  15. #35
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    Riverdance has been used many times and it tends to always draw kind of stereotypic green costumes and similiar movements. Its not a good example of something new and different.

    I don't happen to think that the issue of music has anything to do with homophobia or gender issues in skating.

    People use the same music because skating is a sporting competition not an art form and certain pieces of music lend themselves very well to competitive programs.
    Congratulations 2014 World Ice Dance Champions Anna Cappellini & Luca Lanotte!!!

  16. #36

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sk8tn View Post
    It may have been a few years, but it was popular for a while.

    Riverdance programs I remember:

    Bourne & Kraatz 1998 FD
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nduwt9lgSks

    Chengjiang Li - 1999 FS
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GRGSznX0qcc

    Robinson & Breen 1997 FD
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qUxAqUm7uZU

    And there was an Elvis Stojko tour in 1998 or 1999 where there was a big Riverdance number (he had a nice solo to the slower music - more flowing edges than he usually had).
    Takeshi Honda also had a Riverdance LP back in the day -- with a quad, it earned him the bronze at 2003 Worlds. Of course, his spins and footwork pale compared to Jason Brown's -- and since this was under 6.0 judging, the transitions are spare as well. But his final step sequence got the crowd going (despite it not being very difficult, but it definitely was energetic).

    Quote Originally Posted by BlueRidge View Post
    Riverdance has been used many times and it tends to always draw kind of stereotypic green costumes and similiar movements. Its not a good example of something new and different.
    At least Takeshi avoided the stereotypic green costume.
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  17. #37

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    Quote Originally Posted by BlueRidge View Post
    Riverdance has been used many times and it tends to always draw kind of stereotypic green costumes and similiar movements. Its not a good example of something new and different.
    What I liked about Moniotte & Lavanchy's version was they dared to go for more river, less dance.

  18. #38
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    There's also a class aspect: ballet is an aristocratic art that stems from the court of Louis XIV. At least in NA, aristocratic men are often seen as effete, except when they're serving in the military or at war. The Russian schools of ballet have imperial backgrounds that survived Communism intact apart from a few happy endings tacked on. (And even there, Prince Siegfried doesn't repent and become a peasant worker or free his tenant farmers.) Urmanov came from those traditions.

    Effete is considered unmasculine, gay or not. In many of the Fred Astaire movies, he's a rude jerk, ie American man of his times. He get's the girl away from the beautifully dressed man with the thin mustasche, the guy who is a prince to her.
    "The team doesn't get automatic capacity because management is mad" -- Greg Smith, agile guy

  19. #39

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vash01 View Post
    Very interesting article. It seems to deal mainly with American skaters though. I am curious about how FS is viewed in other parts of world- particularly Europe.
    In Australia the attitude is much the same as the US. I came home from Skate DownUnder and excitedly showed my Dad the photos I had taken with Brendan Kerry and David Kranjec and the Dodds boys - and his immediate reaction was, "Yeah, but how many of them are real men?" *facepalm*

    Although we do have an odd sort of sporting mishmash. Footballers are considered tough manly men except when they're off the field since that's when they commit bad behaviour (though there are some, naturally, who condone that sort of thing); cricketers are considered tough manly men but in a totally different way. I think via cricket there's possibly a bit more of an opening to make Australians stop and think about the athleticism and attitudes towards figure skating.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ziggy View Post
    Since that skater liked rock and metal music, I suggested picking it for their programs, mentioning instrumental arrangements of Metallica, for example. They immediately objected saying it would be too 'out there' and the judges and the federation really wouldn't like it.
    You will be happy to see Brendan Kerry's short program though. Though it is not the rock-metal kind.

  20. #40

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fan123 View Post
    How come all this homophobia and gender issue talk isn’t that much of an issue in other countries? We have had plenty of sequence-costume Russian male skaters in years past who have won many titles...
    As I'd mentioned before related specifically to Russia, in certain other countries, a man who does ballet, or dances in general, or does figure skating, is not considered to be un-macho. Those things are considered masculine for a man to do. It is completely appropriate in such cultures for a man to dance tango, or to dance ballet, or to figure skate - it is considered manly to do so. There isn't this "figure skating is gay" thing at all.
    Use Yah Blinkah!

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