Surya Bonaly

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I don't think she changed the sport at all. Surya's acrobat-on-ice skating style was not appreciated by the powers that be at all, imo, and the judges were not interested in rewarding her for more than the basic scores for the completed jumps. I did not see a change in this attitude at any time during her amateur skating career so don't see how she could be said to have changed the sport.

Not that you asked but, personally, I thought Surya was very entertaining and could do amazing leaps from a standing start. However, I didn't really think of her performances as anywhere close to being what I look for from my favourite figure skaters. Yes I want to see technical difficulty but I also want to see beautiful glide and flow. I want to feel that I am being transported somewhere special to the point that the technical elements are fully integrated and I almost don't notice them happening. To me that is the essence of what makes figure skating unique and special among sports. Count me as one who would rather watch a Patrick Chan stroking around the ice that a Alina Zagitova doing a 5-triple-jump combo if I can't have both the artistry and integrated technical ability.

My first impressions of her were that Surya employed way too many hops into jumps and toe pushes for propulsion and that she skated a lot on the flat of her skate blades rather than the edges, giving her a very awkward look. To be fair Surya worked on those drawbacks and was able to improve a great deal but never managed to eradicate them. As they say about first impressions being the strongest, I was always able to see at least echoes of those issues and couldn't get past them when watching her. Perhaps if I had never witnessed those earlier performances I would have seen more merit in her later efforts and disagreed with the judges.
 

LarrySK8

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Does anyone recall a professional number of hers to Spanish-style music? I can't recall the year, but in that program she showed she obviously worked with a good choreographer. There were edges, good body movement and some flow.
 

taf2002

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Surya could probably been the greatest of all time if her mother would have let go of her strangle-hold on Surya. She needed a real coach. I hated her flat-footed gliding, her toe-pick pushing, & the general ugliness of her skating. No jumps could have made up for her lack of real edges.

However I saw Surya in person about 5 yrs after she became a pro. Her edges & stroking were gorgeous. She had actually learned how to skate correctly.
 

LarrySK8

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My favorite LP : Four Seasons 1993 Worlds. She skated so well there, I think that this performance is the closest to the Gold medal among her 3 silvers. And, JMHO, she should have won it...
I agree! Especially the last section with the 3F+2t; 3 lutz and 3t + 2F and the ending. It's one of her best sections and performances.
 

Tinami Amori

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Does anyone recall a professional number of hers to Spanish-style music? I can't recall the year, but in that program she showed she obviously worked with a good choreographer. There were edges, good body movement and some flow.
Spanish-style is hard for me figure out, as "spanish" style overlaps with african and latin music..
Few in that category that come to mind...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3ZO-_K1p7lo
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MnONbnB1v00
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x_cdx2KsIwI
 

Tony Wheeler

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Does anyone recall a professional number of hers to Spanish-style music? I can't recall the year, but in that program she showed she obviously worked with a good choreographer. There were edges, good body movement and some flow.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7fnJZUaP8c0&t=1605s

That would be my guess for said program, but IIRC she changed the choreography of it every time.

BTW- the music cuts out at points probably because of a copyright issue, but it's Sarah Brightman's version of Tu Quieres Volver
 
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Tinami Amori

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Fiero425

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Does anyone recall a professional number of hers to Spanish-style music? I can't recall the year, but in that program she showed she obviously worked with a good choreographer. There were edges, good body movement and some flow.
It was probably one of her exhibition #'s! She may have worn her Christian Lacroix dress from '92 Olympics and I remember hearing castanets! :rolleyes: :COP: :irina1: :oksana1: :sasha1: :sarah1: :violin: :cheer2:
 

Tinami Amori

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Fiero425

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I am sure in 1992 Oly exhibition she skated to Chio-Chio-San, but not sure 100%
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8io08qHg1MU

But! since we're are talking about her competitive years, and not "professional years" (as i understood), then it is THIS ONE! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lrqZQsVCIXQ :cheer2:
Just saying she took the dress out of mothballs and used in some exhibitions later; '95 on! I didn't even see her performance in '92! The 1st exhibition I remember of hers was '94 wearing a dark bodysuit with birds tweeting and not much else in the way of music! We're talking about 25 years ago! It's a wonder I can recall even that at my age! :rolleyes: :oksana1:
 

Tinami Amori

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Yeah, her music and clothes are confusing.... Because the 92 Oly FS was "black/red dress", by Christian Lacroix
(i had this jack, from his 1990 collection https://farm9.staticflickr.com/8283/7596838922_0e2ba03101_b.jpg so i recognize it). But... the music was not "spanish like", but Leyenda/Asturias #5 from Espanola Suite.
But it does match the description.... anyho..... She still gives us something to wonder about....:40beers:
 

taf2002

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My favorite SP : Cries of Beirut ! Especially at 1994 Worlds, she skated it greatly !
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XQ5xtRfI_ZA

My favorite LP : Four Seasons 1993 Worlds. She skated so well there, I think that this performance is the closest to the Gold medal among her 3 silvers. And, JMHO, she should have won it...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NL2Jlg-O_lU
I would agree with you because IMO Oksana Beiul never should have won any eligible titles because her technical merit was so bad but sadly IMO I felt the same about Surya, her artistic merit was so bad. And her jump landings were often bad too. She would muscle thru them & then couldn't control the landing.
 

Fiero425

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My two favorite programs are:
1989 Worlds LP

https://youtu.be/3PgHh10XWS0

And 1998 Olympic SP

https://youtu.be/HFrzG9p_Xs0

Because it shows how much she improved in skating skills over a decade.
I think Surya was working with the support of Elvis Stojko and his team around that time in '98! The camera focused on him cheering her on getting thru that short program! IIRC she had been using that costume, music ('Caravan'), and jump pattern, keeping it simple with a 3T/3T instead of 3Lutz combo the whole past season! That kept her in the last group of 6 for the LP @ the Olympics in Nagano to feature her illegal backflip! It was her "kiss off" to the judges and commentators who undermined her skating her whole career! :rolleyes: :COP: :judge: :oksana1: :sarah1: :sasha1:
 
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DreamSkates

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I remember her as a top skater of her era. Never held my breathe wondering if there would be a splat fest (she wouldn't land a jump). Also thought her programs were unique. I'd give her a thumbs up for those aspects of her skating.
 

WillyElliot

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My two favorite programs are:
1989 Worlds LP

https://youtu.be/3PgHh10XWS0
Seeing Surya skate to Malaguena cracks me up, because it reminds me of that up close and personal with Yamaguchi and the making of her Oly LP. They show her and her mother going through like a thousand pieces of music, and what did they finally settle on? Surya Binary's (F* spellcheck!!!) Maleguena music with almost identical cuts!!! Kristi was just a warhorse type of gal in her competitive days. Probably why I wasn't quite the fan of hers. (I preferred Jill and Midori and also Tonya to her)
 

bardtoob

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Maleguena music with almost identical cuts!!! Kristi was just a warhorse type of gal in her competitive days. Probably why I wasn't quite the fan of hers. (I preferred Jill and Midori and also Tonya to her)
Who cares if she was not totally original. Kristi was a champion in pairs and singles.
 

taf2002

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That kept her in the last group of 6 for the LP @ the Olympics in Nagano to feature her illegal backflip! It was her "kiss off" to the judges and commentators who undermined her skating her whole career! :rolleyes: :COP: :judge: :oksana1: :sarah1: :sasha1:
She was "undermined" because her costumes were bad, her skating was bad, & her attitude was bad. Most of that wasn't her fault - her mother was a horror who was determined to be the one who taught Surya. But when you watch skating now don't you notice the flaws? Do you give a pass to skaters who cheat jumps or have bad posture? Even Surya's jump content was never perfect. She regularly had stumbling landings.

But her 3lz was one of her best jumps. Too bad she had been injured & couldn't do it in 1998. That's why she did 3T/3T in her SP. She knew she wasn't competitive for a medal which was no one's fault but she gave a big FU to the skating community anyway. I thought it was disgusting.
 

Tony Wheeler

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She knew she wasn't competitive for a medal which was no one's fault but she gave a big FU to the skating community anyway. I thought it was disgusting.
I don’t get reactions like this. Did people have the same feeling when Misha Ge used lyrics before they were allowed? Because it’s on the same level.

Surya knew she wasn’t going to medal, she was having difficulty in that very skate, and wanted to get the crowd back into the performance. It’s a 0.1 deduction. If the ISU really didn’t want such things/took it *that* seriously, they would’ve made the rule state that it’s an automatic disqualification.
 

bardtoob

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She knew she wasn't competitive for a medal which was no one's fault but she gave a big FU to the skating community anyway. I thought it was disgusting.
Go ahead. I thought it was hilarious, especially that here free leg curled up with attitude and virtuosity as she spiraled out of the backflip on the left outside edge.
 

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