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Was it Michelle or Lori

Discussion in 'The Trash Can' started by arakwafan2006, May 19, 2011.

  1. bardtoob

    bardtoob Former Choreographer for Anna Maria Tragikova

    I thought it would ;)

    Well Pleb, I assure that many will not remember your 133rd post or 132nd and so on.

    Here are a few other things skaters under the CoP don't seem to do ;)






    Last edited: May 23, 2011
  2. bardtoob

    bardtoob Former Choreographer for Anna Maria Tragikova

    Last edited: May 23, 2011
  3. Proustable

    Proustable New Member

    Your second to last clip doesn't work.

    Love the figures one, though. I'd love to see them bring that back.
  4. bardtoob

    bardtoob Former Choreographer for Anna Maria Tragikova

    It works for me, but you can search "Tonya Harding 1985 National Sports Festival, Ladies SP" and find it right away.
  5. Proustable

    Proustable New Member

    Excellent. Thanks
  6. kwanette

    kwanette Fetalized since 1998

    This made my day, thank you..

    And to the above poster,Aussie Willy, 2000=TRV, 2001=SOTBS
  7. kwanette

    kwanette Fetalized since 1998

    Me, too.
  8. giselle23

    giselle23 Well-Known Member

    I completetly agree. Michelle's performance in terms of "spark" is at least equal to Yu Na's performance in Vancouver. How ironic that Michelle lost the gold in a performance with intricate choreography of the highest order and yet was criticized later in her career for not having enough choreography! It seems like she just couldn't win with her critics, no matter what she did. And for the record, I think Frank was totally out of line with his comments. I sometimes wonder if that uncalled-for and unnecessary remark didn't ultimately poison his relationship with Michelle.
    Last edited: May 23, 2011
  9. pollyanna

    pollyanna In denial

  10. briancoogaert

    briancoogaert Well-Known Member

  11. aftershocks

    aftershocks Well-Known Member

    Yes, thanks! bardtoob had also posted a U.S. Nationals performance by Janet Lynn that I hadn't seen. She was absolutely extraodinary ... Just to watch her performances ... Janet Lynn epitomizes figure skating. Thanks for all your wonderful (some rare) video links, bardtoob!!! Midori Ito is a revelation -- she really should have won Olympics in 1988, IMHO -- i know, except for the dreaded figures she was not good at. But wow, she absolutely flew threw that performance, and she has gorgeous leg position in her layback spin, which is rare.

    Also, thanks to kwanette and skatesindreams. :)

    Some additional 6.0 performances:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GKmUW8wPB0s Michelle Kwan

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZCRaoNfU0r8 Chen Lu

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M3P7wxwMMUU Tonya Harding

    Programs worthy of 6.0:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_aAIs6iqNXI Johnny Weir (under CoP)

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=whV9xrqwwSU Johnny Weir

    I appreciate your vote of confidence for me as a judge, Aussie Willy. Although, as the current system stands, I don't think I would make a very good judge. I do indeed have a passion for figure skating though. :)

    Thanks for your comments, giselle. I agree generally, except I feel that Frank and MK forged an even deeper bond post-1998 Olympics that began to break down circa 2000 -2001 when TPTB seemed to want the Russian ladies to beat MK, and Frank was not that supportive of Kwan's desire to go to college during that period. Frank's comment re "spark" also may have been his way of coming to terms with MK not winning Olympic gold, as it may have recalled his disappointment with Linda Fratianne not winning in 1980 when she should have. Frank probably wanted to refrain from saying anything negative about the judging, but ended up maybe thinking about Kwan's Nats performance vs the Olympic one, which IMO, doesn't have any bearing.

    Thanks to BigB0882 for your original DoD post which led to a great thread, and to this one as an offshoot.
  12. IceJunkie

    IceJunkie Well-Known Member

    On your first point, I remember an ESPN biography on MK around SLC, where Lori Nichol said that Michelle wasn't training anywhere near where she was pre-1998. Michelle also reached her peak popularity and success between 1998-2002 (some may disagree, but she had 3/4 world titles and 4/4 nat titles that quad, and was raking in the most endorsements at that point) and on top of all that, was in college and had a boyfriend. I don't doubt her commitment to skating, but clearly she had plenty of other distractions, so it was incredible she was able to still skate so well and keep her consistency when she wasn't, by Lori's own admission, training nearly what she use to. I think that by itself attests to Kwan's natural talents.

    As for Frank's attitude about Nagano, I think it was 1/2 him realizing that Tara did skate lights out and deserved to win, and 1/2 not wanting to be bitter like he had been 18 years earlier, and it turn make Kwan bitter like Linda had been for so many years.
    Last edited: May 27, 2011
  13. aftershocks

    aftershocks Well-Known Member

    Sure, IceJunkie, I don't completely disagree, as some of your thougths echo a bit of what I said. However, what I recall Frank saying in a more recent interview is that he disagreed with MK's parents decision to shelter her during the '98 Olympic experience. Frank said in the interview that he felt Michelle needed to enjoy more of the Olympics (but was in a hotel with her parents, rather than in the Olympic village). Whereas, Tara soaked up everything (and the media was more hyping Tara too, as I recall).

    The other distinction is that Tara's programs, altho' skated extremely well, were immature and her choreo and music did not have as much depth and intricacy as Michelle's programs. Also, Michelle skated first in the lp, and Tara last -- they both skated well. Its just a lot of people remember MK breaking out in tears after her lp skate while Tara had this joyous look. Tara, IMHO, learned a great deal from watching MK's skates at Nats -- Tara even copped some of MK's arm and hand movements. Sandra Bezic, who did Tara's choreo had tried to convince Tara not to use Disney music, but Tara was adamant, so Bezic gave in but was not happy with the choice. I think it was ok b/c Tara was after all 15 -- but definitely, her music and choreo are not as memorable as Michelle's. What people remember most about Tara's lp skate are her 3loop/3loop and her effervescence and her scream in the kiss 'n cry, not her actual program. What people fail to remember about Michelle's lp skate, is that she skated as well or better than Tara, certainly MK's was the more mature skate from a more polished skater. MK's tears afterward were probably tears of relief, so indeed, she might have been better off being allowed to fully engage in the Olympic experience, and maybe have less pent-up emotions.

    Also, the decision that went Tara's way was extremely close and controversial, which people also forget. As far as Frank not wanting MK to be bitter, I beg to differ. MK is a very different person from most people in general, let alone different from Linda Fratianne. In fact, if you will recall, MK after winning silver turned to Tara at a post press conference and declared, "I like you Tara." Very sincere and perhaps an effort to defuse the press trying to get her to say something negative about Tara winning. Therefore, Frank did not need to say or do anything to have MK not be "bitter." Being bitter is not in MK's nature. Frank, I believe, based on his recent interview, may have been more upset with MK's parents cloistering her, and that may be partly what was behind the "spark" remark, as again, Tara was shown everywhere, soaking up everything about the Olympic experience. Still, Michelle definitely had plenty of spark when she skated, so Frank was wrong about that. MK's lp music was soft and subtle, but take the performance at face value, and don't try to compare it with her out-of-body skates at Nationals (again, which Tara truly learned from --even Tara's father referenced the fact that "skaters learn from each other," after Tara won Olympic gold).

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sNRxEp3f7vc Kwan

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hsxdjv-NGTc Lipinski

    IMHO, Tara's 3loop/ 3loop, and other jumps (particularly 2axel which has no height) have nothing on MK's iconic spiral, MK's camel spin in both directions, and MK's overall lyricism and body line, plus MK's jumps not too shabby either. ;)
  14. Coco

    Coco Well-Known Member

    Lyra Angelica was an unique program, but I don't think it was intricate. She had 8 jumping passes. It was full of crossovers. I loved the part at the beginning of the slow section that we saw at Skate America, but they took that out.
  15. aftershocks

    aftershocks Well-Known Member

    Well, I do think MK's program was more intricate in how it was put together, and the music had more depth and subtlety, although it also had a light, soft feeling which was a risk for the Olympics.

    Yes, and crossovers are just so horrible, eh? Did not Tara have crossovers in her program too? Neither program (thank god) was constructed in the era of frenetic, points-grabbing CoP programs. Yes God, Toller Cranston too skated crossovers! I could watch Toller skating crossovers all day. ;)


    And yes, even Janet Lynn skates some crossovers, or you might call them etchings on the ice of a majestic work of art.

  16. Coco

    Coco Well-Known Member


    Some skaters crossovers are beautiful to watch, but that wasn't the point of my post. (You've picked two good ones, and let me add Gordeeva to the list!)

    Intricate usually means doing really difficult things with your feet. Patrick Chan's programs are intricate.

    Lyra was the more artistically mature program, but I wouldn't use the word intricate to describe it.

    You are hardly the first person to use that word about Lyra. I just don't see it.

    To use COP lingo, there weren't a ton of transitions in Lyra, so I've never understood the use of the word "intricate" about that program.

    She had a really nice smaller spiral (RBO?) into one of her spins, but that's probably the most significant transition in the program.
  17. aftershocks

    aftershocks Well-Known Member

    Okay Coco, to each his own. :)

    As far as your description of "intricate" as applied to skating programs, I wouldn't say that it means "doing really difficult things with your feet." Ah, Patrick Chan has superb edges, but that doesn't mean "intricate" -- he has just learned from great teachers how to properly position his skate blades, which allows him to have great ice coverage and speed. Having great edges is more related to good technique rather than having an intricate program. It is choreography that can be described as being "intricate." Perhaps MK's Lyra Angelica is not as intricate as some programs, but I feel it was more intricate than Tara's program, and MK's music had more depth as well.

    BTW, dictionary definition of intricate: "Having many interrelated parts or facets; having many complexly arranged elements." So, okay, MK's Lyra Angelica had a variety of elements that were arranged in a more intricate fashion than Tara's program, IMHO. But sure, Lyra Angelica was not as intricate as some programs. The Miraculous Mandarin, for instance, or Lament D'Ariane. Lyra was much more fluid, mature and artistic than Tara's lp. Also, MK's Rachmaninoff sp was also more fluid, artistic, mature and complexly arranged than Tara's sp. Again, neither Tara nor MK skated in 1998 under the CoP system. ;)

    You seem to be more of a CoP-centric fan, Coco. As for me, I don't view everything in skating through the lens or lingo of CoP.
  18. Triple Butz

    Triple Butz Well-Known Member

    Wonderful post! I miss the old days :wuzrobbed
  19. t.mann

    t.mann Member

    Michelle is mesmerizing but is trueLutzless and hardjumpless. ;)
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2011
  20. bardtoob

    bardtoob Former Choreographer for Anna Maria Tragikova

    ;) . . .:p . . . :rofl: . . . newby . . . probably never even saw Kwan at her best and wouldn't even know what to look for . . . too cute.
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2011
  21. skatesindreams

    skatesindreams Well-Known Member

    The new member should at least watch some of her programs before posting.
  22. Vash01

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

    I have often thought that Mao should try Lori for her choreographer. She may bring out Mao's emotions the way she did in Michelle's case. When Michelle was just 15, Lori was able to create the Salome program for her, and at that young age Michelle was able to interpret that music because (from what I read) that was the music she liked. Michelle was truly a master of musical interpretation, but without a choreographer like Lori it is hard to say how far she would have progressed at a young age. After turning pro many of the technical skaters developed their artistry but you watch programs like Salome, Taj Mahal, Song of the black swan, and Lyra Angelica, and you see how unique Michelle's artistry was. It's a shame that she did not get the OGM in her illustrious career.

    I feel that Mao has a lot to give to the sport that has not been discovered. However, I agree that the COP may make it harder to do. Michelle had total freedom to interpret the music because of the 6.0 system. I do believe she lost some of the uniqueness after she left Lori and skated to more traditional skating music. I still loved her programs and the interpretation but the programs were not as intricate as Lori's.
  23. giselle23

    giselle23 Well-Known Member

    Didn't Mao use Lori while she was working with Artunian? I thought Lori did Mao's beautiful Nocturne short program. I could be wrong.

  24. skfan

    skfan Member


    i think part of the reason lori and michelle parted ways is because lori's choreography for michelle had become stale, had lost a lot of its old magic. lori's inspiration went _elsewhere_. which came first, the egg or the chicken--michelle's leaving, or lori's sending the message, i'm burning the midnight oil for somebody else?

    long before michelle started skating to war horses, some of michelle's programs by philip mills and sara kawahara moved me far more than some of lori's lesser creations. not all lori's creations were uniformly great. of course dante's prayers and the red violin (exhibition version) and the programs you mentioned were among lori's most successful--i would say that lori is the choreographer with whom michelle achieved the greatest heights.

    lori did indeed create nocturne for mao, and lori created liebestraum last season. forgive me, perhaps i misconstrued your words, but were you in fact hypothesizing that if mao had lori in the 'formative' years, mao would have been... more michelle-ish, more masterful in interpreting choreography and music at an early age?

    i also see great untapped potential in mao's skating. i wonder if you, perhaps, think that it is already 'too late' for mao--because lori wasn't able to contribute as much to mao's training when mao was younger? i would like to think that it is not too late, because i like mao's skating very much, and this season we've had reason to celebrate several late bloomers, including the current ladies world champion and US champion. also, lori is not the only choreographer capable of bringing out great interpretation--i was deeply impressed with dickson's work for yukina ota--especially picasso dance (03-04 season, IIRC). did dickson contribute as much to yukina's awesome skill in musical interpretation? i don't know--i'm asking you and the other learned people--IMO you could as easily say that it was yukina who had the unique spunk and sass, an ear for how to synchronize her movements with the musical highlights, and with any other skilled choreographer she would have flourished.

    anyway, back to lori and michelle. i'm thankful for those really good years--i now have a lot of skating i can watch and re-watch :)

    P.S. intricacy isn't essential to my enjoyment of a program--what's critical is the choreography's suitability for the music--i love dante's prayer, rachmaninov 98, red violin, but i also love programs like dorothy hamill's pia jesu and paquita, programs which emphasize flow and grandeur rather than complicated fuss, because there is not much in the music to be accented with intricate choreography. grand and epic war horses, i enjoy also :)
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2011
  25. Jarrett

    Jarrett Firebird for worlds!

    I agree it is not too late for Mao. She just needs like someone to click with just like Angela Nikodnov.
  26. miki88

    miki88 Active Member

    Lori has been one of Mao's main choreograhers over the years and generally their programs have been enjoyable. Mao's Nocturne SP has been of the rare gems in Lori's catalogue in recent years.
  27. Sandy

    Sandy New Member

    Is it okay to ask if there ever was a reason given as to the split between Michelle and Frank? They were together for such a long time?
  28. t.mann

    t.mann Member

    Was it Michelle or Lori?


    But I think Michelle was greatly lucky to meet Lori while Lori was at her peak.
    Michell is of course the supreme skater!
    But Lori makes her skaters look like having more artistry than the artistry 'they each have inside'. (Look at the past season's Caro's beautiful LP.)

    Lori is really great.
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2011
  29. TheIronLady

    TheIronLady Well-Known Member

    Why does Lori make a hack of herself so often by doing programs for musical pieces she has already done? She has not done anyone, except perhaps Rachael, any favors with these rehashings of old Kwan programs. Do the skaters come to her with these famous Kwan selections and ask for a program? Or does Lori pick them?

    To name just a few:

    Kostner- SOTBS
    Yoshie Onda - Red Violin
    Rachael Flatt- East of Eden
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2011
  30. VIETgrlTerifa

    VIETgrlTerifa Well-Known Member

    Wait...Yoshie Onda skated to the Red Violin?