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Thread: 2005 COI Reviews&Pics Thread - please post them here!

  1. #76
    usagi2003 Guest

    Default COI - Chicago

    OK, here is my COI Chicago review.

    I just went to COI this afternoon. To be honest, it was really a drag. I had to endure a lot of really, really bad and boring performances in order to get to a few ones I like.

    By the time I got to the intermission, my ears almost bleeded hearing all the awful music.

    I prefer SOI 20 times over COI. I do feel that the people who put together COI really did not put much hearts thoughts in the show.

    I just wanted to share a few highlights. They are only based on my personal experience so please don't get mad at me.

    There were a lot of empty seats in the lower section. I wonder why 'cos the "best" tickets I managed to get were on the 200 level. The show obvious didn't sell well as it did in the past years.

    1) Michelle by far got the biggest applauses. No one else came close. I think she was the biggest reason many people came to the show. The reception to the rest of the cast in the opening was overall pretty good but once Michelle came out all the cameras started flashing and the whole arena was lighed up. If Michelle had any fear or worry that her popularity may drop just because she lost Worlds, she should relax. She was by far the biggest star of the show.

    2) Michelle skated a really good choregraphed program to Josh Groban's "You Raised Me Up". Excellent program with very secure and beautiful edging. I forgot the different jumps she did but she landed all of them clean. Seeing Michelle doing her spiral with the change of edge alone was simply priceless. Extremely loud crowd reaction to every move she did.

    3) Phillp's and Elvis' programs bored me to tears. Thankfully Phillip didn't take off his shirt. He skated to some martial art music and spent at least 2 minutes flirting with some girl in the front row. He picked another girl and sat in her lap for about 1 minute. Sigh... Elvis was just was bad. His program had zero content and lack any creativitiy. He just came out and skated to some rock-n-roll music here there. Then, spent a big deal of time flirting with girls here and there.

    3) Viktor did some nice jumps but his program was plain boring. The song with the lyrics, "can you sleep with me tonight" was kind of annoying 'cos COI is supposed to be a family show.

    4) Sasha did a nice program to "My Fair Lady". She dressed up like a country girl in the beginning and turned into a lady and skated a delightful program. Crowd reaction was great but obviously not even comparable to that of Michelle's. For some reason, she looked better on TV then in person. I think it was because she's so tiny and I sat so far away.

    5) Plushy - Skated to some very loud rock-n-roll music. His stroking and the power in his skate was head-and-shoulder about every other male skaters. It was really apparent when he skated shortly after Timmy G. The crowed loved him and he looked like he had a great time. This guy just has natural star quality.

    6) Shen & Zhou - They got the 2nd loudest reception of the night. They skated the same program as in World exibition. To be honest, their program was only OK. They had better exibition numbers in the past. Their crossovers were extremely fast that came close to the speed of that of B&S. However, their unision really needs some work. They need to pay attention to their body lines more. They did a wonderful delayed doublt split twist that got a loud wow from the crowd. However, there was not much content in the program than a few interesting lifts where she rested up-side-down in his back. Their last forward lift was a little rough. Oh yes, their throw was huge. They got some standing ovations from the folks in my section.

    7) T&M - They skated a really wonderful spanish program. It was a really nicely choregraphed program with interesting choregraphy and original elements. Their unision and the connection to each other was great. Seeing them skate after S&Z really made me appreciate them more. Their throws were a little small but overall they did a very balanced performance. Their stroking was first rated. They just need to be a little more assertive when doing their elements.

    8) I really hate the fluff stuff with the 2 Russian acrobats and Irina G. I am sorry, I just don't think they belong to the show that supposedly features "champions" on ice.

    9) Irina S. skated really wonderfully but she picked the absolutely worst music. That music made my ears bleed. The crowed really supported her.

    10) Oksana K and Artur D. - They got a relatively quiet reception since I think a lot of people don't recall them despite them being Olympic champions. However, they did a very original and interesting program to "Impossible Dream". It was filled with very original choregraphy and of course all their trademark moves. I heard some people say Artur gained some weight but I don't think that was apparent. They were as wonderful as always.

    11) The finale was forgettable although it was much better than the patriotic theme a few years back. It was kind of funny when the announcer said, "here is our cast again skating to Raspsody Concerto" . Ok, do we have to be reminded of the name of the music? Haven't we heard that music from United Airline ads?

    Overall, it was kind of a boring show because the many forgettable numbers. My favorite part was of course Michelle. She was the reason for me to spend $80 per ticket. Plushy, S&Z and K&D were all impressive.

  2. #77
    TimothysMyHero Guest

    Default my pics from cleveland, columbus, and detroit.

    i probably won't post a review, but here's a link to my pics from my 3 COI shows and meeting the skaters. very few of michelle skating, and none of her off ice even though i saw her.

    edit to add the link. lol. sorry i didn't realize i forgot it.

  3. #78
    jlgformk Guest

    Default COI Chicago

    I'll agree with the previous poster who said we saw a good show in Chicago. I don't want to be repetetive, but here are more impressions for people (like me) who tend to read all the reviews, repetetive or not:

    The opening was fun. Michelle singled her axel, but who knows how much time she had to warm up on the United Center ice? She's always been one to warm up carefully, so it's not something I'd worry about. It didn't look to me like she did not know the steps. She looked great out there; a much more natural dancer than many of the other skaters.

    Johnny Weir is a fluid skater and was the combo king today. He did several. Program could use some more intricate choreography, but enjoyable nonetheless.

    Irina's program, to me, was the equivalent of Victor Petrenko's. She has more of an excuse for not skating much, but the music was awful. Lovely girl, not a great number.

    Fumie has many notable qualities. Her spins are the fastest of the ladies (although "triple loop" in the spin thread below would probably disagree). I thought the music was wretched, however, and I wonder who's responsible. If Lori Nichol picked it, then maybe Michelle knew something we didn't.

    Shen and Zhao were fabulous. Again, don't agree with the poster who thought there was not a lot of content in this program. The chemistry between them should count for content, I think. Great tricks, fast stroking, good audience connection. Definitely a hit. In fact, I thought all three pairs were stunning in their own ways.

    Tim skated okay, but I saw him two years ago and his air rotation looked much faster back then. Today, things were a bit labored. He's developing as a performer, however.

    I was surprised that I liked Elvis as much as I did. He has a real connection with the audience, and I don't mean when he is mugging the ladies. Good energy, and a really fast scratch spin, if I remember correctly.

    Michelle's number is lovely, but it went by so fast! She puts so much into each move and has lots of great moves in the program. I really like the opening sequence, with some little hops and edgework that are very effective. Jumps were pretty good, and good for her doing the two hardest triples in her exhibition. I can't believe she can skate, though, with all of those flash bulbs going off. She was the reason that people came, no doubt about it.

    I thought the finale was exceptional. I'm usually not big on group numbers, but I thought that this one really built nicely and used all of the skaters' strengths very effectively.

    Hope I didn't bore you all. I recommend the show if you're near a venue.

  4. Default Re: COI Reviews&Pics Thread - please post your them here

    A few days late for this but I was only on the computer this weekend for a few moments to order tickets for next year's show.

    My daughter and I attended the Columbus COI show! It was fabulous. We upgraded our tickets at the last minute and ended up 2nd row center ice. It was awesome!!

    I loved the show and everyone did a great job!

    Michelle's number is breathtaking and I could watch her skate to it forever!

    I was able to get a few good pics of Michelle in the closing number as she was right there!

    We purchased the COI cast photo for 5.00 and it is beautiful!

    We saw Timothy'smyhero and spoke with her for a few minutes.

    We were able to get backstage passes and met several of the skaters. All of the skaters were very kind! We had them all sign the cast photo which I am going to get framed and took many pictures. My daughter who is 7 was thrilled. We loved meeting Michelle! She is just so sweet! She didn't have Ginseng with her so I ask her and said she was outside being walked!

    Tom Collins came out and I spoke to him and told him we loved the show!

    It was about 10:30 PM and the buses were heading out to Detroit that night! This may be why skaters appeared tired at Saturday's 3:00 PM show. Detroit is four hours from Columbus so they would not have gotten check in to a hotel till about 3:00 AM.

    I do have one question and hoping someone can help! The flyers for next years tickets had the regular prices on them and then they had a limited number of VIP tickets available for 90.00. I am curious as to what is included in the VIP tickets. When I purchased the tickets for next year I went ahead and got the VIP tickets and ended up at center ice second row. Almost exactly where we sat this year!

  5. #80
    VeryColdWater Guest

    Default Re: COI Chicago

    My Review of COI Chicago aka what I did on April 18, 2004

    Opening montage: basically the same thing as every year costumes are colorful with a racing theme.

    Jenny Kirk: CHICAGO They introduced her as National bronze medalist and a World team member, why they didnít mention she was a World Junior Champion is beyond me. Her program was cute and well skated and was one of the better choreographed numbers of the show. She needs to work on getting more power out of her stroking but she has basically decent technique.

    Surya Bonaly: Donít know the music: She has a great 3sal and thatís about all I can say about her skating.

    Johnny Wear: IMAGINE, He did quite a few 3/3ís and has really nice skills. He has wonderful posture but needs to learn what type of program will please an audience at an expensive exhibition show. This is nice for skating connoisseur but not for the average person taking there 11 year old out for an afternoon of fun.

    Belbin and Agosto: Green Acres and Dueling Banjos (shudders): In case anybody does not know, I love pigs and collect them. So when I heard the green acres music and saw Ben come out I hoped Tanith would play the part of Arnold, alas I was doomed to be disappointed. After that dueling banjos, half the men in the arena looked uncomfortable as the music of Deliverance filled their ears. They skated well but their music choices gave me the willies and made me think of inbreeding rather then fine skating.

    Rudi Galindo: National Anthem by Beyonce, The fact that he came back after having major hip surgery is an inspiration. I admire him; however I would rather see Brian Joubert or Stephan Lindeman.

    Elena Sokolova: Music that Maria Buterskaya skated much better too. Anyhoo, she had the only real fall of the day and her jumps were off. She is not that entertaining to watch and me thinks this is the last year we will be seeing her in this tour.

    Fumie Sugari: GFB, She is a nice skater to watch, she has great basics and does everything with a great deal of speed. Her blades were quite and her speed was pretty effortless with good choreography. The audience enjoyed her somewhat and she gave a nice sensitive performance. However she needs to pick better ballads if she really wants to get the North American audience in her pocket.

    Irina Slutskaya: Chihuahua, Itís nice to see her and she looks better then I thought. This program was fun but basically a rehash of last yearís program with a slightly more flattering costume. She landed her running 3ís into loop but the landing was scratchy and her spins were not that fast. Still itís nice to see someone get so much speed out of relatively few crossovers.

    Philippe Candeloro: Japanese Something: I have to admit that Philippe is my 3Pís skater Ė Pee, Program, and a Pretzel (sometimes popcorn instead). He does the same thing every year and frankly I donít find him sexy at all, just dirty looking (ewwww). I caught the tail end of his program and he was basically mashing with some lady in the audience and actually stopped for a photo-op. Oh and to the person above he did take off his shirt at the very end and he was so pale he looked like he should be haunting a house not skating in a show.

    Shen and Zhao: Moulin Rouge, What can I say that has not been already said? They were the only skaters that truly got gasps of admiration and they deserved it. The program was beautiful and the tricks were HUGE. The got a partial standing O (the only real one of the day). They should have been in the second half of the show.


    Nicole Boobeck: Dust in the Wind, which should have been called dust on my skates. Itís obvious this program was thrown together quickly. Her skills are no better then the average club skater and her once famous spiral is now her simply going down the length of the ice on a flat in so-so position. I realize that Nicole is looking pretty with her new boobies but her skating is not worth the high price of admission. Nothing but doubles and I donít remember the last time I saw her land a triple. So many other skaters could have been slotted into her spot, what a waste.

    Hoola girl: nuff said

    Dan Hollander: Nun/Devil in the Blue Dress: Cute but pretty much the same thing Dan has done for years. However I got a kick out of his exploding implants, they made me think of Nicole and what could happen if she fell. Lots of 3 toes and some interesting footwork. Not too bad.

    Vladimir Besedin
    & Oleksiy Polishchuk: This is the forth time I have seen them and finally they did something different. Originally I thought the only difference was going to be Hockey jerseys and Naomiís pregnancy. They had more fun with the audience and did more skating and actual aerial tricks. I liked them more this year then previously.

    Tatiana Totmyanina
    & Maxim Marinin: Have You Ever Loved a Woman, This music is tired and overused but they did pretty well with it. The landed side by side 3 toes but next to Shen and Zhao their tricks throws looked tiny. They did a lift at the end that would make a gynecologist blush. Hopefully they will finally be able to buy some personality next year instead of renting it.

    Victor Petrenko: Sexual Music: The program was hokey and he landed some 3 toes and double axels but he still had nice skills and can cover the ice with a precision that is pleasant to watch. He looked to be in better shape this year then last and not as heavy.

    Oksana Kazakova
    & Artur Dmitriev: Impossible Dream: The version they chose of this song was horrid. He looks like a couch potato on skates and she looks great making him look even worse. They had some nice dance type lifts and moves but the time is fast approaching where these two will have to hang up the skates if Artur does not put down the Krispy Kremes.

    Tim Goebel: ROCKET MAN: His jumps looked OK and his skating was solid, he still needs to improve his posture and positions but they are slightly better. Otherwise I only yawned twice during his skate which is a record for me. For those who are interested his anatomy looked ok from where I was sitting.

    Elvis Stoiko: Generic Pop Music, Same thing he did last year and the year before that and the year before that just less difficult jumps and more handskating. His costume is the same as last year and the year before that and the year before that etcÖ Elvis is truly alive and well but his skating is currently in a cryogenic freeze. I thought turning pro was supposed to broaden your artistic horizons. Shrugs.

    Sasha Cohen: My Fair Lady, I was totally prepared to be charmed and blown away by the improvements in her skating over last year. Boy was I disappointed. She has the scratchiest sounding blades of all the top skaters (even Surya) and the beginning of her program was nothing more then a series of poses and crossovers. The best part of her skate was the costume after the jacket came off but the skating and choreography were nothing to write home about. Her jumps were off and she 2 footed the flip/lutz or Sashajumpô. After last years R&J this was a huge let down. The crowd cheered way more for her before her skate then after. The deficiencies with her basics and seeming inability to maintain consistent speed were made more obvious by the following 2 skaters.

    Evgeny Plushenko: QUEEN, He has style and gosh itís hard not to like this guy when you see him in person. His smile is engaging and almost impish and his skating is to die for. He performed some beautiful jumps (though not all perfect) and his spins looked fast and centered. He has such nice speed and ice coverage you canít help but admire his abilities. The audience loved him and he received a great deal of applause. My one complaint is his hair, that mullet is out of control.

    Michelle Kwan: You Rise Me Up, She gave a great performance, the landing on her lutz was a little off but everything else was buttahhhh. She skated with really good speed and the program was packed with good choreographic touches and a rather difficult entrance into her 2 axel. I was impressed. She had a small but enthusiastic standing O. I think she can up the ante with her jumps and she still has the best basics of the top American ladies (by far). I have to say that I think I liked her costume better with her hair up.

    Finally Rhapsody in Blue: Everyone wore shades of blue, grey and or purple. It was nice but not great; however I think half the people in the arena were ready to beg Michelle to use that as her long program music for next year. It just suited her and Plushy for some reason.

    Oh well, this year was pretty good but there was not as much technical content as there has been in the past but there was some good basic skating and the programs were really nice. The picture of Tom Collins new grandchild is so cute.

  6. #81
    Join Date
    Apr 1999
    Fetalized since 1998

    Default Re: COI Reviews&Pics Thread - please post your them here

    VCW...Michelle raises me up...and you crack me up...Loved your review....My favorite line...the allusion to the Deliverance music....PML!

  7. #82

    Default Re: COI Chicago

    kwanette-I think my favorite quote was re T&M-

    They did a lift at the end that would make a gynecologist blush. Hopefully they will finally be able to buy some personality next year instead of renting it.

    Great review VCW.

  8. #83
    usagi2003 Guest

    Default Re: COI Chicago

    " just dirty looking (ewwww). I caught the tail end of his program and he was basically mashing with some lady in the audience and actually stopped for a photo-op. Oh and to the person above he did take off his shirt at the very end and he was so pale he looked like he should be haunting a house not skating in a show."

    Verycoldwater, yes, you are right. I now think Phillip had taken his shirt off. I got so bored with him doing the silly stuff with the 2 different women that I actually fell asleep.
    I also felt asleep during Timmy G.'s routine. I like the kid but he really needs to work on his postures.

    The lady who sat besides me also was sick with Phillip doing some old tiring stuff year after year.

    It is great to hear that you had a good time. It is funny that you and I saw a few things so differently even though we attended the same show. Even though I wasn't too impress with some of the performances, the experience of seeing Michelle skating to "You Raised Me Up" is all worth the ticket.

    I also felt the whole arena was shaken once Michelle came out.

  9. Default Re: COI Chicago


    Bravo for a great review. I am laughing so hard that I am having trouble typing.

    Thanks! :rollin

  10. Default Re: COI Reviews&Pics Thread - please post your them here

    Denver tomorrow night!!! Can't wait. I'm flying in tomorrow morning...

  11. Default Fantastic COI photos from Atlanta

    I just wanted to highlight these wonderful pictures by Sean O'Connor from the Atlanta COI show (thanks to isk8fan for posting it originally in Skating Chat):

    All the photos are just wonderful! There are many great ones of Michelle:

    Others that I really liked are this one of Fumieís ina bauer (I loved her program!):

    Xue Shen is FLYING!
    (I only wish they had performed "Come What May" in Atlanta so their pictures would match the program I saw in Chicago.)

    acrobats -- they actually SKATED in their routine this year:

    TT & MM lift

    I also was :rollin at the pictures of Dan Hollander. I saw the show in Chicago on Sunday -- and these pictures really help me recapture the wonderful feeling I had for hours after the show was over.

    missmary: If the Denver show is anything like the performance in Chicago was, I know that you'll have a wonderful time!

    (edited to fix hyperlinks)
    [SKF5 note: The section below was posted in the MK dictionary thread as a response to a question about the check presented to Michelle. Sorry that the links don't work now after they were moved -- I can't quickly locate the complete urls at the moment but if I have time later I will fix them.]

    Here is a picture of the check for CMN presented to Michelle at the Washington COI show:

    It was for USA Weekend's "Most Caring Athlete" award, which for the past 10 years has honored athletes who have given back to the work of charitable organizations:

    edited to add info that was posted in the wrong thread by sf5

  12. #87
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    Phoenix AZ

    Default Re: COI Chicago

    Gee, VCW, tell us how you really feel! Too funny! However, the Deliverance reference did not bring back good memories. Unfortunately, that is the movie my father took TwinnerB and I to see for visitation when my parents got divorced. I must have been about 14 and that is definitely not the kind of movie you want to see with your father sitting next to you!

  13. #88
    Join Date
    Apr 1999
    Falls Church, VA (Near Washington, DC)

    Default CMN presentation pic at Washington

    Here is the link to the picture of Michelle and the check.

  14. #89
    ITeach2 Guest

    Default Colubus pictures

    I hope this works. Here are my pics from Columbus. Many are dark-sorry. I did get some good ones, though. Most of Michelle's are a few pages back. The pics are listed under COI '04 in the left column.

  15. #90
    attorneyanniemac Guest

    Default Dust in the wind....

    OK---I am still cracking up over the "dust in the wind" should be "dust on my skates" comment. As good as the show was, I am beginning to think reading the reviews is more entertaining!!! Well done!

  16. #91
    Join Date
    Oct 2000

    Default Re: Colubus pictures

    Here are my pictures. They didn't turn out that great. My sister actually took the ones of Michelle. I didn't want to miss any of her program. Enjoy!

    "I want to be someone who believes . . ." ~ Counting Crows

  17. #92
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    Phoenix AZ

    Default Re: Dust in the wind....

    Thanks, ITeach2 and Yzerbear for sharing your photos!

  18. #93

    Default Thanks everyone

    for the wonderful reviews and for the photos too.

    SkatingFan5: Those photos are GORGEOUS! I particularly love the one of Michelle (3rd row down, second in from left) with her hands raised in the air. Oh my gosh! That has to be one of the most beautiful photographs of Michelle ever, from her body line (the way the costume line falls) to Michelle's beautiful feet, hands and the expression on her face. That's what I call a photograph!


  19. #94

    Default Re: Dust in the wind....

    Sean O'Connor's photographs are some of the best I've ever seen!

  20. #95
    honey827 Guest

    Default Re: Thanks everyone

    Thanks for the photos and the reviews have been hilarious.

  21. #96
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    CyberSpace Mob, USA

    Default Re: Thanks everyone

    Thanks for the reviews and pictures, everyone! Keep 'em coming!

  22. Default OMG YES!!!


    I could not agree with you more. I also love the picture with her embracing hands (3rd row, 1st picture) as well as the SE picture above it. Wow, talk about being in the moment!!! One of the qualities of Michelle's skating that I find so exquisite, is that her skating is not just about striking a pose but is an evolution of flowing emotions, so that each picture can capture the essence of her emotion at a moment in time.

  23. #98
    Ritm2k14 Guest

    Default Any reviews from...

    Denver, CO? Thanks! And it's true the photos are just exquisite!!!!


  24. #99
    TimothysMyHero Guest

    Default behind the scene photos on coi site

    i just found this pic on the coi site.

    that's michelle's dog...ginseng...or so people have said. that's the dog merrie had backstage in cleveland and stuff so i'm guessing that's ginseng. i saw grant with the dog in detroit.

  25. #100
    boredlikewhoa Guest

    Default Re: Any reviews from...

    thanks for the picture. If that is the dog, it is freakin adorable!! I just want to saw "Awwwwww..."

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