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Thread: All COI Pics/Backstage/MK Reports go here!

  1. Default

    thanks for the review and photos. Keep those reviews and photos coming. Next stop was Providence today?

  2. #652
    Join Date
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    pookybear, where were your seats? I love the ones of Michelle just waiting before going out = ) Thanks so much for sharing them! Just wanted to add that I loved the curls that she added in her hair... how cute! She rarely does that!

  3. #653

    Default COI Reading

    It's taken longer than I had hoped, but the rest of my photos from Reading are now up: www.musicbyrachel.com
    Someone suggested I run an MKF special, and since that seemed like an excellent idea, if you are interested let me know and I will let you know the details.
    I don't expect any more photos this year--enjoy!
    Rachel

  4. Default

    Great pictures Rachel. I loved them. Thanks

  5. Default went to my first COI!

    hey guys!

    I went to COI in East Rutherford, NJ yesterday for the 2pm show (anyone else there?) It was my first COI and I was very excited. The show started out with Evan Lysack skating and I didn't even know it was him until he was introduced!!
    I think it was kind of cool to see how as one skater was introducted the next one was already at rinkside waiting for the spotlight to shine on them and be introduced. When I saw MK at the side of the rink...i was soo excited!! I told my husband..its her!! (haha..him being not a big skating fan). I was happy to see MK in the beginning but I noticed that she was not a part of the opening dance when all the skaters were on the ice. I think she is really limiting her skating this year in COI. This was the same for the finale in which MK only skated her part and not in the group numbers as much. Nonetheless I was soo happy to be in the same arena as her.
    I think the skaters with the biggest reception were Evgeni (who is amazing)..Sasha (audience loved her and she was beautiful) and of course MK who came out last. Irina was very charming in her skate. TT&MM had a wonderful skate as well. I wondered what happened to Tanith & Ben's Paris Hlton program because they skated to something else...
    My husband not being a skating fan really enjoyed the hula hoop girl and the acrobats. The acrobats were introduced as "the world's fastest acrobats" but their act this year was sooo slow...but I really appreciate what they do because it looks very risky....
    Nice show overall just wished it was longer..it was rather short and simplistic imo.

    My husband took some pics but they were rather blurry..he also shot some short clips with our camera (opps..hehe) they will be posted soon. =)
    2nd Keeper of both Lyra Angelica dresses

  6. #656

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    Grace - I sat in section 112, row 7 in the closest seat right where the skaters come out. (Like the corner of the rink) Great view of the skaters stretching out their arms before taking the ice. Tanith, Michelle and Evan popped out of the tunnel to watch other skaters perform from time to time. It was so wonderful to see them supporting each other; they were smiling, chatting and applauding. It must be lots of fun touring together and being one big happy skating family!

    I have a clip of Michelle's entire opening number, but I'm not sure if I should post it since someone else has already posted her opening and closing number. Any thoughts Grace?

    ~pookybear19

  7. Default

    pookybear, i went to East Rutherford, NJ show yesterday too...i'm so jealous of your seats! and u got nice pictures! My pics came out very blurry. I loved your pics of the skaters in the tunnel I wanted to be seated somewhere over there but I was at section 117 row 20. My seat wasn't that great..next time i know better and should get seats a bit closer!
    2nd Keeper of both Lyra Angelica dresses

  8. #658

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    Pookybear, thanks for posting the behind the ice pictures or alley pictures (don't quite know appropriate term). Love the one of Michelle and Gwendal (love his ice dancing). I got 3 months to go before seeing COI live.

  9. #659
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
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    East Brunswick, NJ / sunny Los Angeles, CA :)
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    Gorgeous-ness! Hmm it is indeed rare that she curls her hair -- it looks so nice on her! Apparently, she was in NY for something on Friday night so maybe that's what the curls were for, but I don't know what event it was?
    Michelle Kwan: The Only Star That Shines Forever!!

  10. #660

    Default

    I was at the 2pm NJ show as well. My whole row stood for her.

    I went backstage again. When I saw her backstage, she came right over and hugged me, aww! She's the best! I don't really think I said much this time. I meant to thank her for the videos, to tell her everyone on the forum loved them, but of course I forgot. I was pretty happy just being there. There were several other MKFers around me, so I think I was just naturally hanging back more, I don't know. Her hair was beautiful, it was curly, as was already mentioned (I didn't notice it during the show, until I had looked at my pictures!) I was happy to have a pic for her to sign this time (I printed some from the Philly COI show), but I couldn't decide which one out of about 3 or 4. So I figured I'd asked her. I showed her some of my pics and I said, I couldn't decide, pick one, and she pointed to one and said "THIS one!" Hee, I don't think anyone else had picked that one when I asked for opinions, so there you go. I meant to give her the others, but again, forgot. I didn't get a picture with her, and my friend and I realized that as she was at the next person. She promised she would come back when she finished down the line, and she did! When she came back, I got my MKF bear signed (in my Philly report I mentioned I was going to get that signed, but didn't bring it. This time, I took the shirt off the bear and brought that, lol.) Also when she came back, there was about 8 of us Michelle fans there, and the ushers were rushing everyone out, so we did one group picture. It was cute. I don't think any of us really like our picture online, so I've just cropped it so you see Michelle (the pink shirt next to Michelle is me though, haha.)

    Here are my pictures. I didn't take as many as in Philly, and I didn't get as many good ones either. But I like my backstage pics better, so I guess there's the trade off. All the skaters seemed in a better mood backstage this time. (My Philly pics are at this same link, so if you missed them, you can see them now, haha.)

    http://heatherw.com/mk/reports/coi/coi06_pic.htm

  11. Default

    thank you so much Heather! Michelle is amazing!
    plus, I wonder how long Evan hasn't shaved
    Last edited by heartMK; May 1st, 2006 at 05:45 AM.

  12. #662

    Default

    i was at the NJ 2pm show Saturday. it was my first time seeing coi and i really really really enjoyed it. it was very entertaining - wish it could be longer. i was in the upper section and i think if i go again, i'll spend more $ and buy lower section seats.

    i think all skaters did a good job. i was hoo-wahh-yeaaa and clapping like crazy whenever michelle was introduced and also during and after she finished her performances... (since no one around me stood up, i didn't either but cheered as loud as i could).

    i didn't take any pictures. one cuz i was tooo far away to take good pics. two, i just want to enjoy and focus the performances since it's my first COI.

    look forward to other people's report for other stops!
    Last edited by serendipity; May 1st, 2006 at 09:27 AM.
    "I'm a bit of the past, a bit of the present and, hopefully, some of the future." -- Michelle Kwan, April 2006


  13. #663
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
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    St. Peters, MO
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    41
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    Quote Originally Posted by Heather
    I was at the 2pm NJ show as well. My whole row stood for her.

    I went backstage again. When I saw her backstage, she came right over and hugged me, aww! She's the best! I don't really think I said much this time. I meant to thank her for the videos, to tell her everyone on the forum loved them, but of course I forgot. I was pretty happy just being there. There were several other MKFers around me, so I think I was just naturally hanging back more, I don't know. Her hair was beautiful, it was curly, as was already mentioned (I didn't notice it during the show, until I had looked at my pictures!) I was happy to have a pic for her to sign this time (I printed some from the Philly COI show), but I couldn't decide which one out of about 3 or 4. So I figured I'd asked her. I showed her some of my pics and I said, I couldn't decide, pick one, and she pointed to one and said "THIS one!" Hee, I don't think anyone else had picked that one when I asked for opinions, so there you go. I meant to give her the others, but again, forgot. I didn't get a picture with her, and my friend and I realized that as she was at the next person. She promised she would come back when she finished down the line, and she did! When she came back, I got my MKF bear signed (in my Philly report I mentioned I was going to get that signed, but didn't bring it. This time, I took the shirt off the bear and brought that, lol.) Also when she came back, there was about 8 of us Michelle fans there, and the ushers were rushing everyone out, so we did one group picture. It was cute. I don't think any of us really like our picture online, so I've just cropped it so you see Michelle (the pink shirt next to Michelle is me though, haha.)

    Here are my pictures. I didn't take as many as in Philly, and I didn't get as many good ones either. But I like my backstage pics better, so I guess there's the trade off. All the skaters seemed in a better mood backstage this time. (My Philly pics are at this same link, so if you missed them, you can see them now, haha.)

    http://heatherw.com/mk/reports/coi/coi06_pic.htm
    HOW DO YOU DO IT, HEATHER, HOW?? How do you get backstage to every show you go to?? I am soooo jealous!! I thought you had to be a skater to do that and I thought I heard you're not! Did you rub a genie lamp and ask for backstage passes to every skating event? Luck you!!
    Katy

    Keeper of Michelle's final pose/fist pump at the end of 2001 Worlds LP


    In a galaxy filled with phenoms, with comets, and shooting stars.
    The dominant fixture by which all others are measured... the star for young skaters to wish upon. -Jim McKay

  14. #664

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    Is Evan trying to look like Ben?

  15. #665

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    Wow Heather! Your pictures are so awesome! I wish I could take great skating shots like that! I guess I don't have a steady hand. The absolutely love the pictures of her backstage! She's so beautiful in them! Wish I knew how to get backstage! I would love to meet and speak to her! (I have met her before at other events, but each time I was too blown away to say anything except for "hi" and "thank you"... after all it was *the* MICHELLE KWAN!)

    I added a few more pics to my album... I tried to fix the ones that were too dark, but my adobe photoshop skills aren't that good haha! Enjoy them nonetheless!


    (Heather, I sent you 2 PMs. )

    ~pookybear19

  16. #666
    Join Date
    Apr 1999
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    southeastern massachusetts
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    i was at the Providence show yesterday. it was good. it's weird though, cause i haven't been to COI in about 3 or 4 years. there are lot's less in terms of skaters - which is both good & bad as we all have our favorites ;-)

    for me, the standout performances were Johnny, T&M, Sasha & Michelle. as much as this comment may seem mean to some, i'm going to say it anyway just because it affected my enjoyment in terms of distraction:

    i was in one of the bottom sections - just a few rows from the ice really - towards the middle of the rink. the seats were the best i've had at any event in a while. however, above me to me left was a group of mentally disabled teens. you can tell one in particuloar really loved Sasha & Michelle because she screamed/moaned throughout - especially for Michelle. i tried to zone out but didn't really until about the final minute. it's not their fault & they should ABSOLUTELY be there, but we were REALLY distracted. obviously, being the uber fan that i am, i'm a little disappointed. always happy to even see Michelle though, so no harm ;-)

    that said, ending number was cute even w/o Michelle. i'm just so sad that there were so many empty seats. Providence is only a stop during Olys years anyway, but it was rather sad. even if we hadn't had great seats - i believe we could have moved & gotten some.

    oh yeah, forgot to mention that i stood behind Ilia Kulig in line for a beer. we're about the same height - which is funny to me becuase i always thought he was taller. he's still cute ;-)~
    "forgive me for rude. my english is, .......not so good"

  17. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by br0kendr3ams
    hey guys!

    I went to COI in East Rutherford, NJ yesterday for the 2pm show (anyone else there?) It was my first COI and I was very excited. The show started out with Evan Lysack skating and I didn't even know it was him until he was introduced!!
    I think it was kind of cool to see how as one skater was introducted the next one was already at rinkside waiting for the spotlight to shine on them and be introduced. When I saw MK at the side of the rink...i was soo excited!! I told my husband..its her!! (haha..him being not a big skating fan). I was happy to see MK in the beginning but I noticed that she was not a part of the opening dance when all the skaters were on the ice. I think she is really limiting her skating this year in COI. This was the same for the finale in which MK only skated her part and not in the group numbers as much. Nonetheless I was soo happy to be in the same arena as her.
    I think the skaters with the biggest reception were Evgeni (who is amazing)..Sasha (audience loved her and she was beautiful) and of course MK who came out last. Irina was very charming in her skate. TT&MM had a wonderful skate as well. I wondered what happened to Tanith & Ben's Paris Hlton program because they skated to something else...
    My husband not being a skating fan really enjoyed the hula hoop girl and the acrobats. The acrobats were introduced as "the world's fastest acrobats" but their act this year was sooo slow...but I really appreciate what they do because it looks very risky....
    Nice show overall just wished it was longer..it was rather short and simplistic imo.

    My husband took some pics but they were rather blurry..he also shot some short clips with our camera (opps..hehe) they will be posted soon. =)
    I was there @ the 2 pm show too w/my hubby. We were in Sect. 120 third row from the ice. It was so awesome being my first time going to COI.

    unique

  18. Default

    Heather could you pleeeeease create a special section of the website devoted to How to Take Pictures at Champions on Ice? Yours always come out so amazingly well. Mine were CRAP. It was better before I went digital. I only got good pics of SOME skaters right before they started moving. Oh and Sasha--for some reason hers always come out. But Michelle's--not even worth uploading lol! (Except for the very end when they were taking bows).

  19. #669
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
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    I can't wait to see the show. I am going to this weekend's COI in Cleveland, and I am going to get to meet Michelle there. I am so excited!!! (to stop everyone from asking, I had a connection with COI that hooked me up).. What exactly does MK do with the closing number? nothing at all? fill me in!

    Thanks everyone for your great reviews!
    "I used to want to skate like Michelle Kwan. Now I want to live like her."

  20. Default

    Thanks for the beautiful photos of Michelle. I suspect that we have
    some professional photographers on this board. Some of the photos
    are magazine quality.

  21. #671
    Join Date
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    Quote Originally Posted by Googoo
    Heather could you pleeeeease create a special section of the website devoted to How to Take Pictures at Champions on Ice? Yours always come out so amazingly well. Mine were CRAP. It was better before I went digital. I only got good pics of SOME skaters right before they started moving. Oh and Sasha--for some reason hers always come out. But Michelle's--not even worth uploading lol! (Except for the very end when they were taking bows).
    GOoOo... can you tell me what camera you are using? Even though my photos turned out crappy at the last COI, I'm pretty sure I know what was wrong - and I couldn't set my camera any higher than ISO400, so if I wanted sharp photos, I had to set the shutter speed high, only problem was there was not enough light to capture the movement. Show lighting for skating is one of the hardest to capture - from what I have been reading on photography. With spotlights on the skater, and contrast in lighting, as well as the quick movement - haha, all very good challenges.

    Heather, your pics are really well exposed =) As I told you before, Michelle should change the color of her outfit to a lighter color for ASFY just so we photo gurus or, as my MKF So-Cal friends like to call me "Gracerazzi" (oh dear)... could capture a better picture. Dark on dark is so difficult.

    Yes, give us tips Heather - actually, I'd appreciate it if any of you who have posted photos to give us tips. Shutter priority? What shutter speed? What ISO? mm? Obviously the lower the aperture, the better, so that pretty much depends on the camera (or lense) How to set white balance? Exposure - plus or minus by how much? Details details.. Haha, I think I'm getting greedy! How do you "grab" that photo - do you guys spot focus and just wait for the skater to pass you by or autofocus? Anticipate the skater's moves? LOL, as you said once Heather - I think I need to memorize the program.

    Goo, I loved your Totentanz photos =)

  22. #672
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    Starrysky, about the ending of COI, this is what happened in Richmond:

    Michelle is the last to skate her program. When she finishes her bows, other skaters come skating out with these arch things (Michelle skates off). They are wearing colorful costumes and skate around for a while to some upbeat music.

    After a while, some skaters come out in white - I think Johnny Weir is one of them and A&P. Don't remember what they skated to. Then, after they finish, Michelle just appeared at center ice, skating to Around the World in 80 Days. I think after a minute or so, B&A skate out and do their thing (Michelle leaves), and then Sasha finishes the song.

    Various groupings come out and skate the final part, but Michelle doesn't come out again until the We are the Champions skate around and final bow.

    So basicly she doesn't skate in the group numbers but has a small solo part in the middle of the finale (in an awesomely stunning white costume).

  23. #673
    Join Date
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grace
    Yes, give us tips Heather - actually, I'd appreciate it if any of you who have posted photos to give us tips. Shutter priority? What shutter speed? What ISO? mm? Obviously the lower the aperture, the better, so that pretty much depends on the camera (or lense) How to set white balance? Exposure - plus or minus by how much? Details details.. Haha, I think I'm getting greedy! How do you "grab" that photo - do you guys spot focus and just wait for the skater to pass you by or autofocus? Anticipate the skater's moves? LOL, as you said once Heather - I think I need to memorize the program.

    Goo, I loved your Totentanz photos =)
    I know from experience how difficult it is to get good photos under these lighting conditions. A big round of applause to Heather and all the others of us who got some really nice shots.

    I got my compact Fuji S5200 because it is small enough to satisfy arena and show officials who don't want us bringing in big pro-type cameras, but has enough zoom for good image scale. For about $350 it gives me 10x zoom range and has a full set of auto and manual modes. The flash can be turned off. 256MB memory cards are under $40 each.

    I set the camera at ISO 800, shutter priority auto exposure, shutter speed 1/250 sec. I locked the focus at center ice, and the focus was decent all over the rink. The auto focus can handle a spinning skater, but it will miss if my aim is a little off, and it could slow down the response of the shutter release. I erred on the side of underexposure because I can get phenomenal recovery with my PaintShopPro software. If severely overexposed, which can happen on faces under spotlights with a dark background, the blocked-up highlights are lost forever.

    I could have bracketed like mad and gotten some better exposures, but the distraction of doing that would have spoiled my enjoyment of the show. I chose to gamble on the exposure and watch normally with both eyes, without having to think about the camera settings. To make that possible, I made a simple sport finder from a pair of red LED light bulbs and some scrap circuit board material which I mounted on top of the camera. With a little practice on TV skating shows it works like a charm.

    If I had it to do over I would simulate the scene with spotlighted miniature figures in a dark room, and take test shots with different amounts of exposure bias and metering patterns.
    Last edited by KeithB; May 1st, 2006 at 07:29 PM.

  24. #674

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    Thanks for posting pictures. I actually prefer the pictures that haven't been crop off just to show one skater. So, pookybear, I found your pictures the most interesting since it was of skaters getting ready to take the ice or getting off the ice. Love seeing Gwendal, Rudy, Sasha, others in the same photos with Michelle. It just tells a story more.

  25. Default

    Did anyone go to Providence and can write a review or photos? Who is going to Rochester tomorrow?

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