Skaters' Signature Programs

Miki89

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Recently, I was rewatching many great skating programs from the past and was curious to see what others consider the defining, signature programs of well-known skaters through the years.

Here are some of my choices:

Katarina Witt: Carmen

Gordeeva & Grinkov: Moonlight Sonata

Oksana Baiul: Swan Lake

Lu Chen: Rach Piano Concerto no. 2

Michelle Kwan: Lyra Angelica

Alexei Yaguin: Winter

Sasha Cohen: Dark Eyes

Mao Asada: Nocturne

Daisuke Takahashi: Techno Swan

Yuna Kim: Danse Macabre

Carolina Kostner: Bolero
 

Wyliefan

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Dark Eyes was good, but I'd say Romeo and Juliet was Sasha's signature program.
 

Habs

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Kurt Browning - Casablanca

Bourne & Kraatz - Riverdance (although I would also argue High Society)

Virtue & Moir - Mahler

Elvis Stojko - Dragon
 

Wyliefan

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Jason Brown: Riverdance
Kaetlyn Osmond: Piaf
Satoko Miyahara: Either Star Wars or Song for the Little Sparrow, I can't quite make up my mind!
 

miffy

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Mishkutenok/Dmitriev - Liebestraum

Brian Joubert - The Matrix

The Kerrs - Scottish dance with John’s kilt :D
 

Jeschke

#teamtrainwreck
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It would be interesting to see what you folks in here see as Savchenko's signature program.
I can't decide, likely would go with 'Pina'.
 

ChelleC

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I think Blues for Klook could also be considered a signature program for Daisuke Takahashi.

Hanyu---Seimei
 

Moka-Ananas

Rednecking around with Joe Exotic
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Plushenko - Nijinsky
Slutskaya - her FS at 2005 Worlds
Kulik - Rhapsody in Blue with his iconic and horrible giraffe costume
Lipnitskaya - Schindler's List
 

Taso

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Surya Bonaly - Four Seasons (I've literally spent the last couple days going through every performance of this on youtube in sequence :p)
 

bardtoob

Clichy Competitive Audition Protocol Auditor
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I think the 1991 Worlds SP is Tonya Harding in a nutshell.
Canadian Broadcast

British Broadcast

British Eurosport

US Broadcast


All the English-Language broadcasts of the 1991 World SP had somewhat uptight commentators, and, shockingly, nobody criticized her and actually complimented both her technical ability and presentation. This is in addition to the judges giving her 2nd place marks despite being 3rd in the skating order of 37 skaters.
 
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mjb52

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Surya Bonaly - Four Seasons (I've literally spent the last couple days going through every performance of this on youtube in sequence :p)
I love her Meadow Robin Opera exhibition best - for years, I mistakenly thought it was Metal Robin Opera probably because of the association from her shiny jumpsuit.
 

Taso

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I love her Meadow Robin Opera exhibition best - for years, I mistakenly thought it was Metal Robin Opera probably because of the association from her shiny jumpsuit.
Oh I loved that program as well, so so much.... Here is the program and the costume. Could for sure be her trademark program as well :) This program literally has every aspect of figure skating, from compulsory figures to triple-triples and beyond the boundaries of the conception of the sport itself :respec:
 

aftershocks

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Jeremy Abbott: A Day in the Life; Exogenisis Symphony (Muse); Sing, Sing, Sing, Lilies of the Valley (Pina)

Michelle Kwan: Salome; Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No.3; East of Eden; Fields of Gold; Tosca; Lyra Angelica; Hands;
Dante's Prayer; The Red Violin; A Day in the Life; Winter; Ariane; Carmen Suite; The Feeling Begins; Romanza; etc.


Patrick Chan: Take Five; Dust in the Wind; Hallelujah; The Four Seasons; Phantasia; Mack the Knife

Denis Ten: The Artist; Ambush From Ten Sides; Sing, Sing, Sing; The Lady & the Hooligan; SOS d'un terrien...

Deniss Vasiljevs: Puttin' on the Ritz; Adagio for Tron; The Nutcracker

Nathan Chen: Nemesis; Rocket Man

Andrew Torgashev: Bloodstream (Tokio Myers)

Yuzuru Hanyu: Seimei; Romeo & Juliet

Jason Brown: Riverdance; Love Is a Bitch; Writing's on the Wall; The Scent of Love

Matt Savoie: Adagio for Strings; The Mission

Adam Rippon: O (Fly On)/ Arrival of the Birds; Let Me Think About It; Beatles Medley; Who Wants to Live Forever

Paul Wylie: This Is the Moment; Henry V; Schindler's List; JFK; Miss Saigon; On the Waterfront; Carmina Burana

Brian Boitano: Les Patineurs; Napoleon & Josephine

Kurt Browning: Singing in the Rain; Brickhouse

Rudy Galindo: Pachobel's Canon; Swan Lake

Johnny Weir: The Swan; My Way; Rondo Capriccioso; Otonal; Valse Triste; Dr. Zhivago; Poker Face; Love Is War
Also: Ave Maria; Fallen Angel; Nature Boy; Imagine; Sarabande Suite (Fallen Angels) with Gregory/Petukhov

Savchenko/Szolkowy: The Mission; Lilies of the Valley (Pina); The Pink Panther; Send in the Clowns; Casablanca
Honorable Mentions: Lost in Space; Once Upon a Time in Mexico; Angels & Demons; The Nutcracker

Savchenko/Massot: That Man; La terre vue du ciel; Lighthouse

Duhamel/Radford: Hometown Glory; Say Something (exhibition)

Stolbova/Klimov: I Put a Spell on You; The Addams Family; Surrender; Clair de Lune

James/Cipres: The Sound of Silence (Disturbed); Earned It; Say Something; Wicked Game

Sale/Pelletier: Love Story; Tristan & Isolde; (all of their exhibition programs)
 

MsZem

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It would be interesting to see what you folks in here see as Savchenko's signature program.
I can't decide, likely would go with 'Pina'.
It's impossible to pick a signature program for Savchenko, she's one of those skaters who has had more than one distinctive/memorable programs. I couldn't choose a signature program for Virtue/Moir or Papadakis and Cizeron, either, and I'm debating if Berezhnaya/Sikharulidze should be Chaplin or Lady Caliph.

The easiest one in this thread is The Matrix for Joubert :lol:

Not yet mentioned: Ashley Wagner - Moulin Rouge.
 

paskatefan

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Brian Orser - The Story of My Life
Kurt Browning - Casablanca, Singin' in the Rain
Todd Eldredge - First Knight, Il Mare Calmo de la Sera, 1492, The Glory
The Kerrs - their Scottish dance
Paul Wylie - Henry V, JFK, Carmina Burana, Apollo 13
Michelle Kwan - Salome, Winter, East of Eden, Lyra Angelica, Dante's Prayer
The Shibutanis - Fix You
Chock & Bates - their "Snake" Dance, so far ... (I LOVED their "Under pressure" program, too)
Javi Fernandez - Guys & Dolls, Malaguena, Man of La Mancha, Black Betty, his "Aerobics" exhibition
Capellini & LaNotte - Life is Beautiful, their "Dance of the Hours" exhibition
Davis & White - Samson & Delilah
 
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Jeschke

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Kavaguti/Smirnov: Manfred

Arakawa: Turandot

Ando: Cleopatra

Radionova: Jotem

Tuktamysheva: Sandstorm

Pogorilya: Modigliani Suite

Aliev: Masquerade Waltz

Bobrova/Soloviev: Anna Karenina
 
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Weve3

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Some notable signature programs — tip of the iceberg.

Oksana Baiul — every program, tbh. Oksana’s programs did not disappoint and define the very essence of epic.

Ditto Plushy!

Yuna Kim — (SP) OO7 James Bond medley and pretty much everything else.

Carolina Kostner — Bolero

Ashley Wagner's (SP) Hip Hip Chin Chin. Signature Wagner.

Javier Fernández — Malagueña

Anything from Aljona (with Bruno and Robin)

Bobrova & Soloviev — Anna Karenina

Klimova & Ponomarenko ❤ Olympic FD.
Air from Suite No.3 by Bach | Toccata and Fugue in D minor, BWV 565 by Bach, Stokowski.
 
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Wyliefan

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I think La La Land might have become Ashley's signature program if she had gone with it from the beginning of the season, rather than switching away from it and then switching back to it at Nationals. I'm still sorry she didn't.
 

AngieNikodinovLove

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Angela Nikodinov - "Just For You," "No One Gives Up On Love"
Michelle Kwan - "Lyra Angelica" (Runner Ups): "Fields Of Gold," "Dante's Prayer," "East Of Eden"
Sasha Cohen - "Dark Eyes"
Shizuka Arakawa - "Swan Lake (techno)" - she got more mileage out of this program than anyone ever
Oksana Baiul - "Carnival Of The Animals - The Swan"
Carolina Kostner -"Ave Maria"
SHOUTOUT: Manta & Johnson - "Sweet Dreams"
Mishkutenok & Dmitriev - "Lieberstaum"
Brasseur & Eisler - "Tears in Heaven"
Javier Fernandez - "Chaplin"
 
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aftershocks

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I forgot to mention how much I enjoyed watching Xue Shen/ Hongbo Zhao. I love so many of their performances, which is about the intensity of their connection and their passion for the sport.

Their most memorable and iconic program of course is the Turandot fp at 2003 Worlds when Xue was injured and they skated with such courage and passion! I also loved their Pas de Deux from The Nutcracker (2003-04) and music from Madame Butterfly (2005-06) -- all choreographed by Lea Ann Miller. Turandot was choreographed by Miller, Renee Roca & Gorsha Sur!

In addition, there are other iconic performances and music selections by Nathan and Hanyu, but the ones mentioned are those they will probably always be the most associated with. I love Nathan's junior programs: MJ medley (Smile + Smooth Criminal); Piano Concerto # 1 in E minor; and practically all of his senior programs. Besides the two already mentioned in my earlier post, I enjoy: Le Corsaire; Caravan/ Moliendo Cafe; Land of All (Woodkid); La Boheme; Mao's Last Dancer/ The Rite of Spring. I forgot that Rocketman (mentioned in my earlier post) is part of a medley of Elton John songs that includes Goodbye Yellow Brick Road and Bennie & the Jets. Nathan was so wonderful in Shae Lynn Bourne's edgy choreo to Benjamin Clementine's Nemesis, that I'd love to see Nathan perform to more of Clementine's work.

Hanyu will certainly always be associated with the jazzy and bravura Let's Go Crazy, along with Seimei and music from the DiCaprio film version of Romeo & Juliet: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aK3MJxS_--E vintage Hanyu (crazy uber-talented at age 17). Of course, he needed to slow down a tad and feel the music more, but what he's doing in this program is amazing, especially with his asthmatic condition. The fall was just a stumble on nothing so that didn't really matter -- he was winded, but he got back up and flew right into his signature triple axel with loads of speed, superb technique and out-of-this-world rotational ability. He was getting tired but he continued pulling out the landings, which is a testament to his singular drive and focus. I've always taken issue with a few things about Hanyu's skating (he needs more awareness of stretch, posture & carriage, and pointing of his feet, as well as feeling the music more and projecting more to the audience instead of looking down so much). Still, he's an incredible athlete/performer/technician. His soft knees and the consistent technical precision on his jumps is legendary.
 

VGThuy

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I think one of Raf’s mistakes as a coach was advising Ashley to or taking a hands-off approach with allowing her to decide to go back to her Moulin Rouge LP for the fall season prior to the Olympics. Even she seemed bored of it at the GP. Then she skated to La La Land at Nationals and there was that spark again. It provided her a different look and she looked great with it.
 

aftershocks

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^^ Yeah, it's been talked about a lot, but who knows what the real reason is for Ashley shying away from La La Land? Maybe she took some of the negative fan complaints about the music too much to heart and lost self-belief in her choice. Or did U.S. fed voice any issues with the program at Champs Camp? Sometimes program obstacles need to be worked through.

Didn't U.S. fed voice some doubts about Johnny Weir skating to the TAT-choreographed Liebestraume? Or was it simply that Johnny didn't like the music, or he allowed himself to be swayed by critiques? I was disappointed to never see Johnny skate to Liebestraume. That's why it was so satisfying and rewarding to see Jason Brown skate to Liebestraume years later (when he was still competing as a Junior internationally). Choosing music and constructing programs is usually a mixed bag, and generally not a piece-of-cake. But when it works out well, the struggles are worth every effort!

Ashley Wagner's (SP) Hip Hip Chin Chin. Signature Wagner.
^^ For real. Ash had that short program down pat, wearing Marissa Castelli's gorgerous black dress. :cheer2: Another signature Ash Wagner program is of course, Black Swan, years before Kaetlyn Osmond skated her World champion-winning version. :)
 
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nuge

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A/P Olympic OD Flamenco
D/STAS Handel
G/P Libertango and ArabianFD
D/SHAB in a bad way Olympic OD:eek:
B/K Riverdance
D/SHOEN Frieda
 

aftershocks

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Todd Eldredge - Gettysburg soundtrack 1995

Todd Eldredge - First Knight soundtrack 1996

Looking back, Todd was very workmanlike. Sort of a no-frills blue collar skater who got the job done. He was a consistent jumper with a catlike ability to land jumps even those that were a bit off in mid-air. At 1995 Worlds, Todd's flukey, uncharacteristic fall on an attempted 3-axel probably lost him the World crown, despite the fact he landed a successful 3-axel at the end of his program. In 1996, Todd was flawless and determined (after Rudy Galindo had inspiringly taken away the U.S. National championship title). With his great athleticism and focused determination, Todd would surely have been a successful quadster had he been born a bit later, in the era of quads becoming king, and the must-have tech element to win gold at the end of the rainbow. The best thing about Todd is his sweet personality and his genuine kindness that I once experienced in-person. For me, the most memorable moment in Todd's career was when he placed his gold medal around his mother's neck at rinkside after the victory ceremony at 1996 Worlds -- the same year Michelle Kwan won her first World title. :saint:


John Misha Petkevich - Rachmaninoff's Piano Concerto No. 2 1971 U.S. Nationals
JMP on executing a flying open axel sit-spin: "I do it with natural feeling rather than with conscious effort."

JMP - On the Waterfront 1970 Worlds
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=40ay4nLJf0U
So JMP performed to On the Waterfront years prior to the versions by Mark Mitchell and Paul Wylie (in exhibition)

JMP - Espana Cani 1972 Worlds

Toller Cranston brought his signature moves and bravura style to everything he skated to; he particularly shined in exhibition and show performances:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gvP0m7AOC3w 1973 Worlds exhibition
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AYjmVYFCihg 1974 Worlds exhibition
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7cf_zI9Xo9o Firebird 1983 pro competition in Landover, MD
This 1971 performance by Toller at Canadian Nationals looks like Toller was influenced by John Misha Petkevich's skating, or vice versa, eh! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jC7fizOwrDI

Toller's sp and lp performances at 1974 Worlds in Munich, with Toller's reflections: "It was just an intellectual idea that was acclaimed, and I was the vehicle... I remember saying [to myself]... just go out there and it will either be very good or very bad, but I'm going to sock it to them, and I don't care anymore... I thought that the way I would immediately get them into my hands was to start with lightning speed, like a firecracker." :respec:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y7AZboQ0R08 [Someone please name the familiar music!]
I read on Wiki that Toller experienced Osgood Schlatter's disease when he was a teenager, and he was told by doctors he would never skate again (probably because the disease was little understood at the time). Coming back from that was no small feat, especially in those times!
Thanks to @floskate and to @skatesindreams for many of these old videos :saint: ♥

John Curry - Don Quixote 1976 Olympics
Here's an interesting phenomenon I hadn't heard about: Balbir Singh Dance Company was inspired by Curry's 1976 performance to Don Quixote to create a Flashmob performance to the music. The below video features Curry's complete performance and then the interesting dance moves inspired by and performed by the dance company in honor of Curry's 70th birthday anniversary (at 2019 Billingham International World Festival of Dance):
 
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