Thursday, November 7, 2013
Twizzle double standard
These are from youtube's aWaltzFlower
I encourage everyone to watch these. I especially appreciate that the videos have their own musical score (like a well-edited montage) which helps make it easy to watch many twizzles and numerous teams. The close editing is also a plus, each example starting and ending at the actual twizzle entrances and exits.
The material is, needless to emphasize, illuminating. :)
(ETA - I have just noticed, belatedly, that DW's twizzles are aptly scored with You Should be Dancing (yeah, too bad they're not) and VM's twizzles with The Best Things Happen When You're Dancing. :)
The videos fly by and instead of everything blurring, when somebody's twizzles aren't so hot it just jumps at you, when a team has grown, it jumps immediately. It's a great way to get information fast.
Let's note how fans are making the effort to scrutinize the figure skating and to notice if ice dance is actually being judged with integrity.
Looking at how "journalists" write about figure skating, and the mindset revealed in the figure skating marketing and commentary, and guided by the behavior of ice dance's biggest stars (Virtue and Moir) - figure skating in general and ice dance in particular is merely a delivery system for romantic fantasy, or material for relationship voyeurs. Those fans exist but what is accomplished by marketing as if those fans define the public interested in figure skating? They don't.
Virtue and Moir are the sport's greatest skaters, and they're just not interested in talking about their skating. They concentrate on whoring out their (fake) relationship, using the chemistry as a teaser, playing around and baiting, even though at the end of the day, every time, the public is led down a road to nowhere.
I would say to them and to the sport in general - stopping kidding yourselves. There's plenty out there other than figure skating to satisfy the public's romantic fantasies. They don't need to suffer through your bullshit. Although many fans haven't learned about/deconstructed technique, it's still skating they're appreciating. If Virtue and Moir were ordinary skaters nobody would give a shit about their chemistry or her looks.
And as to twizzles specifically, I don't think variety in the actual twizzle type done in whatever sequence (even the same sequence) is as important as the twizzle sequence continuing to keep pace with the highest standard of difficulty (which DW's do NOT do, something the ISU rulebook resolutely ignores, defying principles of motion in the process), and as long as the ice dancers show control of their blades and control of their twizzles by demonstrating they can vary the rhythm in clear relationship to the program music and as long as the style and character of their movement is appropriate to the dance style they're presumably doing in the program. This can actually be accomplished with the same twizzle sequence from program to program - the variation lying in rhythm and in the character/style of the skaters' movement, carriage, phrasing, etc. And of course, execute them as strong twizzles technically - fast rotation, substantial ice coverage, synchronized with your partner, in unison with your partner.
At their best, C/L are a good example of introducing variation in the execution of their twizzles while continuing with the same (three set) sequence. These variations go to skating skills and dance skills, which is the sport being judged here, after all. It's quite remarkable how differently CL manage to phrase their twizzles using rhythm and character of movement.
I do not think that the same twizzles executed the same way season after season, and program to program, with unvarying rhythm, unvarying character of movement, and, most importantly, unvarying level of difficulty for Christ's sake (somehow DW's twizzles magically meet the requirements for each season's highest base value without the twizzles themselves ever evolving) are twizzles that should be competitive for Olympic gold - or World gold.
Yes, you've had five years to drill them so they're rote. I expect them to be more or less clean and polished at this point (IOW, no wobbling), but there are skaters out there with gorgeous double axels that sail like a dream and those jumps don't rate like an imperfect, but rotated and landed, triple axel. Not to mention the supposed speed of DW's twizzles don't stand up to scrutiny in the second set, when everything slows down; the rotation around their axis and their travel across the ice.
Posted by oycanada at 10:07 AM