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Spins as choreography

Discussion in 'The Trash Can' started by gkelly, Feb 7, 2013.

  1. gkelly

    gkelly Well-Known Member

    By their nature, it's often hard to integrate spins into the choreography of a program instead of just sticking them in as technical feats.

    This is probably more true under IJS, since the rewards for adding higher levels are more obvious and reliable than rewards for originality or matching the spins to the music or program theme.

    Can we use this thread to celebrate some examples where the spins are used for those purposes?

    How else can spins contribute to the choreography?

    I'll try to come back later with some of my own.
  2. orbitz

    orbitz Well-Known Member

    I think the same can be said about doubles, triples and quads.

    Paul Wylie flapped his arms during his sit spin to match the beat of the music. A nice fast combo spin to match the fast ending of the music at the end of the program, ie. Todd Eldridge, is always a crowd pleaser.
    gkelly and (deleted member) like this.
  3. zilam98

    zilam98 Well-Known Member

    this season, there's much fuss about v/m's spin in their carmen FD--not the fastest, and has been sloppy on centering, but their movements in that spin certainly added character to the whole program and not just your regulation score-as-much-points-as-you-can kind of CoP dance spin.
  4. Lainerb

    Lainerb New Member

  5. gkelly

    gkelly Well-Known Member

    Last edited: Feb 7, 2013
  6. JJS5056

    JJS5056 Well-Known Member

    A popular choice for similar topics has always been Gusmeroli's 2000 LP. While we could (and have) certainly debate whether back-loading the program so heavily with spins was ideal in terms of a well-balanced program, but I think the general consensus has been that it worked well for that program, particularly with the special emotion added when she skated it so wonderfully at both Euros and Worlds.

    At those same competitions, Slutskaya showed how difficult it is to make spins work choreographically, even before COP. Her layback in the middle of a music change was such a big miss. She was my favorite skater of that era, but I remember my jaw dropping as I watched those Worlds live.
  7. circuscandy

    circuscandy New Member

    I really love the entrance and exit of Meryl and Charlie's FD spin this year. The exit is actually my favorite part. The sudden stop adds a lot.

    I do find that dancers have some great integration of spins. I need to go through my YouTube favorites and pay attention to them all now.
  8. Marco

    Marco Well-Known Member

    Not so much "as choreography", but Kwan used to time her spins so perfectly to the music. At 1998 Nationals, the final combination spin in the short program was timed perfectly to the music, especially the change of foot. This season, Wagner is doing the same with her layback spin, with each change in position matching the music in her free skate.
  9. l'etoile

    l'etoile New Member

    I thought of that program, too! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0FLgexOEvvs

    Actually, many of top ladies do spins to music lately. Mao and Yuna also come to my mind.
  10. orientalplane

    orientalplane Mad for mangelwurzels

  11. sykr

    sykr Guest

    I've always loved Anissina/Peizerat's spins...I know it's pre-COP era and and spins were just introduce to the dance cathegory, but I loved all of them and I think they really paid a lot of attention to them and to make them a part of choreography. I especially love those from their Beethowen free dance http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UcHBnitxwLw The positions, speed, entrance and exit....everything is just perfect (and even more, compared to what their competitors did at time) and I think the spins were one of the highlights of the choreography :swoon:

    And I also agree about D/W's spin this year:)
  12. Kwantumleap

    Kwantumleap Well-Known Member

  13. Aussie Willy

    Aussie Willy Hates both vegemite and peanut butter

    This was the first program I thought of when I saw this thread title. It was really special the way she put all the spins at the end and worked beautifully with the music. It also had some really beautiful choreographic moments such as at the start of the program with the arrow movements to the music.
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2013
  14. aliceanne

    aliceanne Well-Known Member

    I've always found the biggest drawback to using spins in choreography is that unlike footwork and jumps they don't provide any ice coverage, and skaters are judged on how well they use the entire ice surface.
  15. zilam98

    zilam98 Well-Known Member

    if that were the case, then the skating federations shouldn't have made spins a requirement in the skaters' programs ;)
  16. Aussie Willy

    Aussie Willy Hates both vegemite and peanut butter

    Sorry but where did this concept come from? :confused: Ice coverage has nothing to do with how a spin is used. And judging takes into consideration much more than just ice coverage.

    Spins are a required element in a program. So skaters have to do them. They get judged on their own merits for the GOE. But in the GOE guidelines skaters can earn positive GOE for if the element fitting into the musical structure and phrasing. And if the spins work as part of the choreographic structure, that can be considered in the components.

    In fact if consideration is not given to where the spins are placed in the program ie the skater just does them without consideration for the music, then that should be reflected in the CH mark.

    If Gusermoli did that program today, the one thing you would definitely give her credit for is the way the spins were used. They may not have been used throughout the program, but they fitted in with the music so well and made the program what it is. You definitely remember that program for those spins alone. That is why a few of us have mentioned it.
  17. JJS5056

    JJS5056 Well-Known Member

    One thing that's so disappointing about COP has been the lack of creativity on the part of coaches and choreographers, IMO. COP obviously creates a challenge and is fairly restrictive, but I've never understood why, for instance, we haven't seen a 4th spin at the end of a program- a fast scratch spin or classic layback can make such a wonderful statement at the end of a program. It would receive no technical points, but I would have to believe that a Nikodinov-style layback at the end of a LP would have some influence on a judge's CH or PE mark.

    Same thing with spirals- sure, they aren't required in the SP anymore, but they weren't required in LPs either until COP (of course, the well-balanced program guidelines that were introduced in the 90s recommended moves in the field, but AFAIK, spirals were never explicitly required). Yet, skaters still did them.. Why have we seen so few? I get that it takes time and energy, but a nice CoE spiral should make up for it in CH, PE and/or TR. Oh well, this is a thread on spinning so I'll stick to my first thought.
  18. gkelly

    gkelly Well-Known Member

    IIRC, ca. 2000-2003 the well-balanced program rules required a spiral sequence from ladies and a "field moves" sequence from men, along with a step sequence and at least four spins -- which very quickly became at most for spins (for points) under IJS, and then at most three a few years later.

    As for why skaters and coaches don't put extra elements at the end when they won't gain points, one reason may be that they don't have enough time or energy left after working hard to get as many points as possible on the elements that will earn points.

    The other reason would be just failing to think outside the actual element boxes. :)
  19. VIETgrlTerifa

    VIETgrlTerifa Well-Known Member

    I never understood why under 6.0, the powers that be wanted a spiral sequence in the LP. The SP I understood since it was an element-by-element comparison. I prefer spirals to be isolated and placed where they made sense like in Kwan's Song of the Black Swan LP. I always loved how she placed her spirals there.
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2013
  20. Bosha

    Bosha Active Member

    Thank you for posting those links. It is easy to forget just how lovely Chen Lu's skating really was. The first program was a Toller Cranston, the second a Sandra Bezic. It is interesting to note that both choreographers used the spin, at least in part, as a choreographic element. I haven't noticed Bezic doing that in other skater's programs.

    The second links to an ABC program with Dick Button and Peggy Fleming doing commentary. If you watch to the end, there is a classic Dick and Peggy colloquy: Dick is unhappy with Lulu's leg position in the layback and Peggy starts in about her lovely upper body position. Do I ever miss those two!
  21. aliceanne

    aliceanne Well-Known Member

    I don't know what everyone found so confusing about my comment. I am well aware that spins are required elements in technical competition. I was pointing out that spins take up time but they don't provide ice coverage, which is why you need to use them judiciously even if it is your skater's strong point.

    The title of the thread is spins in choreography not spins and the IJS. I was pointing out a choreographic limitation in using spins.
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2013
  22. Aussie Willy

    Aussie Willy Hates both vegemite and peanut butter

    Well to quote you:

    Going by your comment, it reads that you are suggesting that because spins don't cover the ice, then it affects the way the program is judged. You didn't elaborate any more than that.

    Putting spins into a program comes down the basic concept of program construction and element placement. Same goes for jumps and footwork. If they don't fit with the music the program isn't going to work anyway.
  23. JJS5056

    JJS5056 Well-Known Member

    Thanks for the clarification on the well-balanced rules guidelines. Either way, skaters included spirals in their programs long before they were required. Now, over the course of two programs, we're lucky to get a brief arabesque thrown into the CH sequence. Trust me, I'm not looking for a return to the spirals of 04-10, but with it no longer being a required technical element, I would have imagined we would begin seeing a return to classic positions used as hightlights within programs. Instead, they've all but disappeared.

    I think your second reasoning is closest to the truth- failing to think outside the actual elements. COP has certainly played a huge role in templatizing programs, but choreographers and coaches aren't completely innocent. A select few have taken the challenge and managed to create masterpieces- see Savchenko/Szolkowy's best programs- while others still paint by numbers.

    Totally understand that endurance could be an issue, but skaters performed 4 spins prior to 2009 and seemed to bey okay. Additionally, since a fourth spin wouldn't count, it wouldn't be held to any of the same standards- a 3-rev layback would be just fine (though, again, I would think and hope these elite skaters could handle 8 revs in a classic position :)).

    Anyway, just a few examples of where I wish choreographers would look to put their own spin on what is typically a very rigid and standardized system of rules.
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2013
  24. Aussie Willy

    Aussie Willy Hates both vegemite and peanut butter

    I like the idea of a choreography spin where all spins are a level one and their skater is marked purely on GOE.
  25. Marco

    Marco Well-Known Member

    Travelling camels do provide ice coverage (and some of Slutskaya's spins do too :p)
  26. Impromptu

    Impromptu Well-Known Member

    It's a professional program, I watched it live at World Pros. Over 25 years later, I still remember the spin at the end of it and how perfectly it went with the program.

  27. Aussie Willy

    Aussie Willy Hates both vegemite and peanut butter

    I like the saying "That spin travelled so much you need a passport for it".
  28. DustPuppyOI

    DustPuppyOI Well-Known Member

    Yukina Ota 2003 SP
    The spins and the variety of arm positions went with the music

    Lucinda Ruh 1999 Worlds LP
    Pre IJS but still always loved the musicality

    Aleksandr Fadeev 1994 World Pro Artistic Program
    No way legal under IJS but I've always loved the traveling sit spins at the end.

    Yebin Mok 2003 Nationals SP

    Naomi Nari Nam 1999 LP
    Always loved how the traveling camel spins went with the music near the end.
  29. Vash01

    Vash01 Fan of Yuzuru, Medvedeva, T&M, Shibs, P&C

    Paul Wylie used spins very effectively, as part of the choreography, in his programs- at the right moment, the right kind of spin. Under COP however I don't know if it will work that well.