Tuesday, February 18, 2014
 USA Gold: Gold medalists (center) Meryl Davis and Charlie White waive to the crowd at the Ice Dance Finals Sochi Olympics Medal Ceremony, Iceberg Skating Palace Sochi Russia

Last night were the Ice Dance Finals at the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics. I had the pleasure of being invited to be part of NBC's "Olympic Ice" show on NBC.com to talk about the Ice Dance costumes with 2002 Olympic gold medalist Sarah Hughes earlier yesterday (yes, I woke up very early to watch the finals here where I live in Los Angeles). You can watch my "Nick Costume Recap" HERE. But, here on my blog it's time to discuss the highlights of the Ice Dance costumes and the running theme: Costume Changes! First off, time to congratulate Meryl Davis and Charlie White for getting the gold medal, along with silver and bronze medalists from Canada and Russia respectfully:

Raise Your Bouquets: (left to right) Silver medalists Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir of Canada, gold medalists Meryl Davis and Charlie White, and bronze medalists Elena Ilinykh and Nikita Katsalapov of Russia--Iceberg Skating Palace Sochi Russia

Now, time for the Costumes-- I want to start with Davis and White, the gold winning Ice Dance pair:
Meryl Davis and Charlie White of the U.S., Free Dance to “Scheherazade” by Nikoli Rimsky-Korsakov: I LOVE these costumes. They belong together--both  Meryl and Charlie meet my criteria that the costumes must have something to do with the music/theme. Meryl looks exotic, sensual and utterly hypnotic, which is what Scheherazade should be in this draped and jeweled costume. In the past, I scoffed at Charlie's tussled messy hair and how I wished--for some of their more elegant programs--that possibly he could have at least added some gel. But I take it back; his messy surfer-boy-like hair works in ANY ice dance he is in. Period. 

Her costume was a different color from what she had worn for the Figure Skating Team Competition at the Sochi 2014 Olympics a couple of weeks back:
Meryl Davis and Charlie White of the U.S., Free Dance, Sochi 20-14 Olympics Team Competition--Her costume was the same but a different color-way as we say. This one was teal-colored while the one she wore to the finals was lilac. She had worn the lilac one to the U.S. Nationals in January:

 Meryl Davis and Charlie White at the Prudential U.S. Figure Skating Championships at TD Garden on January 2014 in Boston, Massachusetts 

Meryl Davis and Charlie White of the U.S., Short Dance to "My Fair Lady": This above is what they wore for their Short Dance and I liked it since it reflected more of Audrey Hepburn's character in the iconic film and the blouson sleeves/neckline were more in tune with the Period of the movie. It was designed by Randall Christensen of Randall Designs. Christensen, in case you didn't know, was the Costume Designer for ABC's "Dancing With The Stars" from Season 2-12. So, if anyone knows how to create performance, dance-heavy costumes, it is him! This pink costume on Meryl above was a change in what she had previously worn during the entire season for the same program (also designed by Randall Christensen):

 Meryl Davis and Charlie White of the U.S., Short Program costumes, before the Sochi 2014 Olympics

Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir of Canada, Free Dance to Petit Adagio by Alexander Glazunov, Waltz in Concerto No. 2 by Alexander Glazunov, Allegro Moderato by Alexander Skriabin: Scott wore all black with blouson sleeves and Tessa wore a dusty rose dress with chiffon knee-length skirt and scroll-like sequin applique. Her costume was pretty and delicate, if not a bit underwhelming. But I did recognize the gorgeous and very expensive-looking crystal applique bodice work. This above was a costume change--for Tessa AND Scott--from what they wore for the same Free Dance during the Team Competition:

Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir of Canada, Free Dance costumes, Sochi 2014 Figure Skating Team Competition: Tessa wore a bright red dress with heavily detailed gold trim and sequins reminiscent of a Faberge egg, while Scott's shirt had contrast red piping, insets and buttons. These costumes seemed very "Russian"--the music itself was Russian-composed. I like the more subtle dusty rose costume which she chose for the Finals. I'm not used to see Tessa costumed so "elaborately".

 Costume Change Queen (and King):
Canadian Costume Changes: For this same Free Dance program, Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir have worn these other looks/costumes above. On the left is what they wore at the Canadian Tire National Figure Skating Championships/Canadian Nationals 2014 in January 2014 and the right photo is what they wore for ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final 2013/2014 on December 2013, Japan.

And then there was another Costume Change:
Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir of Canada, Short Dance to Foxtrot: Dream a Little Dream by Ella Fitzgerald, Louis Armstrong; Quickstep: Muskrat Ramble by Louis Armstrong; Foxtrot: Heaven by Ella Fitzgerald, Louis Armstrong: Scott wore a white tuxedo shirt, black suspenders, bow tie and pants. Tessa wore a black shimmering dress with Art Deco-like neckline detail. This was a costume change for Tessa from what she wore for the Figure Skating Team Competition Short Dance program:

Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir of Canada, Short Dance, Sochi 2014 Figure Skating Team Competition/Short Dance: Tessa wore a black dress with pointed "car wash" hemmed skirt and black sequin detail. I liked the black dress/costume she wore to the Finals better; the neckline detail seemed more refined, delicate and interesting.

Elena Ilinykh and Nikita Katsalapov of Russia, Free Dance to "Swan Lake": I love these costumes. Simply one of the best of the Ice Dance. Elena and Nikita are the Supermodels of Sochi; both are beautiful and both looked stunning in their costumes. From the photos above (left, the Sochi 2014 Ice Dance Finals tonight and right, the Sochi 2014 Figure Skating Team Competition). I wanted to highlight if you noticed something different/missing--costume-wise. If you guessed her headdress, you are right...(and gloves!):

 Elena wore a red and silver crystal headdress/crown on her forehead for the Finals above, while she went crown-less for the Team Competition. Speaking of crowns...

Elena Ilinykh wore a silver tiara for the ISU Grand Prix NHK Trophy 2013

Ekaterina Brobova Dmitri Soloviev Brobova of Russia, Free Dance to "Man with a Harmonica" from the Once Upon a Time in the West soundtrack by Ennio Morricone: These costumes above--and program/music--were from their 2011-2012 Season. She wore a black uneven hemmed dress with plunging square-shaped neckline and Dmitry, a gray loose sweater and dark gray pants. This was modern and directional but not impacting enough for the Olympics. I am not sure why they changed their programs and went back to a previous one--as well as previous costumes--these were the SAME costumes they wore for the 2011-2012 Season. 

Previously--for the 2013 Season...
Their Free Dance was to Music from The Four Seasons by Antonio Vivaldi and "Lacrimosa" by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and they had different costumes for this program: At the Russian Nationals 2014 in late December 2013, Bobrova and Soloviev wore these ombre blue/gray and ivory costumes above...

 And before that, they wore these costume above for the 2013 ISU Grand Prix Finals in Japan in mid December 2013

And before that...they wore two of my favorite costumes of the season back in November 2013 at the ISU Grand Prix Lexus Cup of China 2013. These were spectacular bird-like costumes. They looked like Paris Runway Ravens ready to take off into an amazing ornithological pas des deux. They thought about everything--from her chic runway-like hairstyle to the unusual "feathered wings" that were attached through her arms and back; simply outstanding! I wish they would have worn these to the Sochi 2014 Olympics (as well as skated to the music that corresponded with these).

Anna Cappellini and Luca Lanotte of Italy, Free Dance to Overture from Barber of Seville by G. Rossini: Speaking of costume change, Anna Cappellini of Italy changed her costume for this Free Dance. Previously (as seen in the photo on the right), she had worn a deep red ruched and draped costume with fringed hem. The costume she wore for the Finals was ivory, ruched and gathered at the torso and ruffled at the hem with "fan" details at the bodice. Which one do you guys like best? The new, or old one?

Maia Shibutani and Alex Shibutani of the U.S., Free Dance to "Michael Jackson Medley": Maia changed her costume--slightly--for this Ice Dance Final. This costume above, a black with silver crystals, neckband and arm-bands was different from...

...what she wore for the Sochi 2014 Olympics Figure Skating Team Competition (photo above). The change was very slight. The one above featured a one sleeve/shoulder silhouette and different torso styling. Even though it was subtle, it was still a different costume. Alex's costume stayed the same. One of my favorite details of their costumes is...

 Alex's red sequined lapel lining which he snaps open to display toward the end of their program

Maia and Alex Shbutani--"The Shib Sibs"--also had a Costume Change for their Short Dance:
Maia Shibutani and Alex Shibutani of the U.S., Short Dance to a Michael Bublé medley: Alex's costume was a bow tie-less tuxedo shirt with black buttons and black pants, while Maia wore a very pretty blue costume with nude illusion top and corseted midriff featuring gorgeous silver beading. Her costume was a change from what she had previously worn...

...at the 2014 Prudential U.S. Figure Skating Championships/U.S. Nationals on January 2014 in Boston, Massachusetts:this time she wore a deep magenta-colored chiffon dress with a sweetheart neckline and heavily beaded bodice.

Madison Chock and Evan Bates of the U.S., Free Dance to Selections from Les Misérables by various artists: Madison designs all their costumes and this dusty rose pink dress on her was a costume change from what she had worn previously. This above was lovely and reminiscent of the "Cosette" character. It featured an ivory ruffled neckline and lightly corseted bodice and slight hi-lo hemline. It was a change from what she wore at the U.S. Nationals last month:


Madison wore this dress/costume above at the 2014 Prudential U.S. Figure Skating Championships/U.S. Nationals in Boston, Massachusetts in January. This dress had a gathered bust more heavily sequined bodice/midriff and shredded chiffon shoulder straps. Evan--like most of the other Ice Dance male partners--stayed the same; he looked sharp, elegant and perfect as the Ice Dance Marius of "Les Mis".


Congratulations to the Top Three medalists! And especially Meryl Davis and Charlie White for winning the Gold Medal! Go USA!

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