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ICE STYLE.....2012 Skate America: Pairs, Men Costumes

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Figure Skating Is BAAACKKKK!!!!

 Mens and Pairs Top Three--Skate America 2012, ShoWare Center Kent, Washington

Figure Skating Fans Around The World Rejoice: Season 2012-2013 is ON!!! Over the weekend, was Skate America 2012, the first of six events in the 2012-2013 season in ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating, a series of senior-level invitational competitions.

 ShoWare Center Kent, Washington--site of Skate America 2012

The Hilton HHonors Skate America 2012 occurred at the ShoWare Center in Kent Washington (about 21 miles from Seattle) from October 19-21st. I attended last year's Skate America and LOVED it. So let's get to the Costumes, which is, after all, one of the main reasons I LOVE Figure Skating--besides all the amazing athleticism, of course--

Let's begin with Pairs:

USA--Caydee Denney and John Coughlin--For their Short Program they did a "Swing Medley" skated to one of my favorite pieces of music, "Concierto de Aranjuz" and for their Free Skate, they used "Phantom of the Opera". I liked the costumes for both programs. I liked his better on his Free Skate and hers better on the Short. What I am most happy about is that Caydee toned down her garish eye makeup for both--compared to what she did when they won the US Figure Skating Championships last February:

Turquoise Eye Shadow Princess: Caydee Denney vibing "Toddlers & Tiaras" with her eye makeup last year

France--Vanessa James and Morgan Cipres--For their Short Program to "Rhumba d'Amour" and "Safri Duo", this duo chose to wearing contrasting colors--which is typical of pairs. I like her purple halter neckline costume although it is a very predictable look. Especially for a country known for its HAUTE COUTURE, they could have done better (on her costume). I think Morgan looked HOT and yes, there is that PLUNGING neckline that has been so prevalent in the last few years among the men.


China--Pang Qing and Tong Jian--Pang and Tong--Short  Program to "Scott and Fran's Paso Doble"--They were very "Carmen" on COUTURE CRACK. He was the Toreador. Perfect. She was the One-shouldered Señorita with a Dragon-Lady Twist. I think these costumes were FABULOSO! These two really understand Stage Presence, performance and the importance of Costumes to the entire show.

China--Pang Qing and Tong Jian--Pang and Tong--Free Skate--For their Free Skate, they skated to "Variations on an original theme Enigma"--She wore a lilac colored costume with silver sequins and he wore a darker lilac v-neck shirt with (yawn) black pants. It's so typical for the guys to wear black pants. I almost give them an instant "Nick Negative 5 points" when I see it. I know why they want to do it. But, by now, I am so "over it", I'd rather see dark BLUE or a very deep PURPLE instead! Seriously. Both her costume and his shirt--even though they look as if they are very intricately and very expensively embroidered--still look very Figure Skating Costume Store bought. These kids needs better and more High Fashion-looking costumes for their Free Skate. Period.


Russia--Tatiana Volosozhar and Maxim Trankov--They were the Gold Medal Winners overall. For their Short Program, they skated to "Love Theme from The Godfather" (top photo) and for their Free Skate, they did it to "Violin Muse, Partita for Violin No. 2 and Chaconne" (bottom photo). Their Free Skate costumes were far more interesting. Although I did like her Short Program deep violet halter costume with neck chains. But...their Free Skate looks were much more ethereal, exploratory--costume-wise. His was especially ultra feminine, and yes, only Maxim could make wearing asymmetrical pleated chiffon look SO BUTCH.

The Men:

Michal Brezina of Czech Republic--My favorite costume for him was what he wore for his Short Program to "In The Hall of the Mountain King". Dark; both very feminine and masculine; there's slight "bling-bling" with the sequins, and chiffon volants for flutter effect. I like it.

Doug Razzano of the USA in his Short Program to "Piano Concerto No. 2  Allegro Scherzando by Rachmaninoff "-- Doug was appropriately costumed. The deep violet-blue is elegant and the chiffon neckline ruffles with swirly applique and sequins bring s to mind a romantic and very classic feel.

 
Konstantin Menshov of Russia in his Short Program Costume to "Lillies of the Valley" looked like a Macy's INC model from 1992. The dress shirt, black pants and that tacky belt? How do you say "Huney. Try again" in Russian?


Japan--Yuzuru Hanyu--Japanese skater Yuzuru Hanyu skated the BEST Skate of his career and the highest score EVER recorded for his Short Program to "Parisienne Walkways". For his Long Program, he skated to "Notre-Dame de Paris". I liked both costumes but especially the one for his long program. The big cross, the ombre dyed ivory and red shirt, the one sleeve ruffle and one black glove. Lots of details and he was not afraid to "Go For It"!

And Yuzuru was definitely paying homage to Johnny Weir (as seen from the photos above). And if he is not...I'm sure Johnny will be happy to let him know who the ORIGINAL is!

Jeremy Abbott USA: For his Long Program, Jeremy Abbott skated to "Bring Him Home from Les Miserables"--His costume was well, less than a costume. I get that the Men love them black pants Yes, I know...Jeremy's are brown) but I am bored of seeing so many black/brown pants. Like I said above, give me NAVY BLUE at the very least! Also, the costume is still a very integral part of one's performance and while I get that this one is depressing and serious, the costume doesn't have to be depressing also; a beige shirt and brown pants? Jeremy, please, I want to see just a little bit more.

Short Program Love: For his Short Program, Jeremy skated to "Spy"I really LIKED this costume. The asymmetrical holster--very Hipster Fashionista, the slick back hair, the (almost) fingerless gloves. This costume--even though it's still a gray shirt and very tight dark gray/black pants--works with the music and performance--and still, keeps this Fashion Designer/Commentator (moi) interested.

Blue and Black Theme:

Armin Mahbanoozadeh of the USA: He skated his Free Skate to "Dr. Who" wearing a black and blue stretch top and black pants...

Doug Razzano USA skated his Free Skate to "Queen Symphony by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and Tolga Kashif"--he also wore a blue and black stretch top with black pants...WHO, was the BEST blue-and-black Men's Costume?

Finally...Here's my Pick for Best in Men's Costume at Skate America 2012:

Tatsuki Machida of Japan--Free Dance Costume--He skated to "The Firebird" and his costume was FABULOUS! The neckline and upper torso red and yellow sequin detail was marvelous and went perfectly with the black illusion rest of his top. This is a PERFECT Men's Costume for that particular music. Not every male can get away with this look (at this point we know we'll never see Jeremy Abbott or Patrick Chan sporting this style), but if you can carry it off, and Tatsuki can, then Go For It!

*Next Up, The Ladies and Ice Dance Costumes at Skate America 2012

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