Tuesday, April 01, 2014
Thank You Japan: Tomas Verner of the Czech republic at the "Kiss and Cry" area, ISU World Figure Skating Championships 2014, Saitama Japan

The 2014 ISU World Figure Skating Championships ended on Sunday and in my previous blog HERE, I discussed the LADIES and PAIRS Costumes highlights with some costume changes and well as the same old sequins and stretch satins we had seen throughout the season from the skaters. Now, it's time to talk about the MEN and ICE DANCE. There were lots of male figure skaters at the Worlds that I have not discussed and personally, I was struck at the amount of "kookiness" in their rather extravagant costumes. They make the Ladies costumes look pale and boring in comparison--
Let's take a look at some Male Figure Skater Costume Kookiness Highlights:

Chafik Besseghier of France, Free Skate to Passion (from "The Last Temptation of Christ") by Peter Gabriel, Egyptian Disco by DJ Disse, Reborn by Era--Let me tell you, if I saw this costume and then realized he was skating to "West Side Story', I would have been really scratching my head! But nope, he skated to "Egyptian Disco" and "The Last Temptation of Christ". Admittedly, this costume is more the former than the latter. It is very "Tutankhamun-Meets-Star on Ice".

Ivan Righini of Italy, Short Program to "Bolero in RnB version"--silver and black zig-zag, red piping, metallic zippers, a "mock" deep-v neck with faux collars (very Trompe-l'œil !). It's a bit futuristic, a bit "superhero", and yes, a bit 'kooky".

Jin Seo Kim of Korea, Short Program to "The Mask" (soundtrack)--OK, so this makes total sense. We all know Jim Carrey's mustard yellow costume/suit from the film, and this is a great take on it. I think it's original and cute for Jin Seo Kim. I also love how the graphic black and white prints and polka dots were incorporated. Good (Costume) job!

Justus Strid of Denmark, Short Program to "Quidam" (from Cirque du Soleil)--Of course, Justus is skating to Quidam. I should hope so! With this kooky costume, there could be nothing else he could be skating to! Seriously. But, with that said, I really, kinda/hoped that he would have worn that little red cap and done his hair like the "Quidam" promo photo above. Now THAT would be taking the "kooky costume" degree to another level!

Kim Lucine of Monaco, Short Program to "Mario Brothers" by Koji Kondo--First of all, who is this Hunk-a-Hunk, and Who Knew Monaco had a male figure skater in international competition (I didn't, sorry)?! I knew that Princess Caroline of Hanover's daughter Alexandria, was a budding figure skater and after some web research, I found her and this young man with the big quadricep leg muscles, hanging out together in some photos (ooh la la!). Now, the costume: of course, he's skating to "Mario Brothers"; the bright red top, the blue jumper, the white gloves! Oh and notice how it's been "super dazzled" a la figure skating with strewn crystals at the torso. Very nice. If you think that's a little "kooky" he takes it to another level for his Exhibition Program:

 Monaco Mario--Kim Lucine of Monaco doing "Mario Brothers"--2014 ISU World Figure Skating Championships Exhibition Gala, Saitama Japan

Nam Nguyen of Canada, Short Program to "Unsquare Dance" (from "Walking on Eggshell) by Dave Brubek--Almost 16 year-old Nam (how precious is he??), wears this fun, color-blocked graphic jumpsuit for his Short Program. I LOVE how there are oversized/exaggerated piano keyboards in his torso! It is definitely 'kooky" but SOOO much "Fun Kooky"!

Stephane Walker of Switzerland, Short Program to Strobe's Nanafushi by Kodo--I have two questions regarding this costume on Stephane: first, why isn't he skating to "Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves"? And second: WHY isn't he skating to Robin Hood's "Prince of Thieves"??? Seriously the flap-y top, the simulated distressed leather, the strapped ankle detail. I guess this could be considered Japanese taiko drummer (Kodo's music) style costume in some circles, but still, I'd rather he was skating to...you-know-what.

Abzal Rakimgaliev of Kazhakstan, Short program to "Swing medley" by Big Bad Voodoo Daddy--Oh Abzal and his suspenders!! I've discussed this costume when he wore it at the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics so check out what I said HERE.

Tomas Verner of the Czech Republic, Short Program to Duelling Banjos (from "Deliverance" soundtrack)--Wew!! Thank goodness he was skating to Country Western music! This look is very "Gay Rodeo/Line dancin'...and I like it. I would have even taken it a little farther with the belt buckle: Bigger and Better!

Yuzuru Hanyu of Japan, Free Skate to "Romeo and Juliet" by Nino Rota--Sochi Winter Olympics gold medalist Yuzuru Hanyu won gold again here at the Worlds. For his Free Skate, he's worn this costume--designed by Johnny Weir--throughout the season. I think it's a bit of a mess and I've discussed that HERE.

Max Aaron of the US, Short Program to "Historia De Un Amor" by Perez Prado--I LOVE this costume. It's simple, clean, has hints of a "tuxedo shirt" but a plunging very sexy one! And when you've got Max's petite yet very athletic body, FLAUNT it!

Tatsuki Machida of Japan, Short and Long Program Costumes--Tatsuki wears these costumes for his SP and Free Skate and I'm a fan of both, especially the "Firebird" one on the right for his Free Skate. It is ONE OF THE BEST Male Figure Skating Costumes of the 2013-2014 season!

Ice Dance:
Nathalie Pechalat and Fabien Bourzat of France, Free Dance to Caroussel (from "Cirque du Soleil") by Benoit Jutras, Droit de Cite by Raphael Beaun and Max Steiner, Jeux Interdits by Fernando Sor and Le Petit Prince et sa Rose by Maxime Rodriguez--I've talked about these "kooky" costumes before and needless to say, I'm not a fan but...I get that they are very much in line with "The Little Prince" music and therefore reflect it's childlike quirkiness. However, I still think they are a bit "Figure Skating Costume Amateur Hour".

Charlene Guignard and Marco Fabbri of Italy Short Dance to Money, Money, Money (from "Cabaret"),  sung by Liza Minelli and Big Spender (from "Fosse")--I liked these SD costumes from the Italian Ice Dance pair of Guignard and Fabbri. They are very reflective of the music, the theme and look expensive and refined. Good job.

Alexandra Paul and Mitchell Islam of Canada, Free Dance to Dance For Me Wallis (from "W.E." soundtrack) by Abel Korzeniowski, Satin Birds (from "W.E." soundtrack) by Abel Korzeniowski, I Will Follow You (from "W.E." soundtrack) by Abel Korzeniowski and Going Somewhere (from "A Single Man" soundtrack) by Abel Korzeniowski--I absolutely LOVE Alexandra's red applique-over-nude-illusion costume; it is very Elie Saab/Zuhair Murad Haute Couture-inspired. His, however, lacks any originality or creative vision; he looks like a waiter at a Vegas coffee shop.

Maia Shibutani and Alex Shibutani of the USA, Free Dance to Michael Jackson Medley--I love these costumes and I have made that very clear HERE. SO cute and sooo good! These were some of my favorites of the 2013-2014 Season. Hands down!

Piper Gilles and Paul Poirier of Canada, Free Dance to End Credit (from "Hitchcock" soundtrack) by Danny Elfman, Explosion (from "Hitchcock" soundtrack) by Danny Elfman, The Premiere (from "Hitchcock" soundtrack) by Danny Elfman, The Rainstorm by Bernard Hermann--Another one of my favorite Ice Dance costumes were worn by Canada's Gilles and Poirier. They skated to a "Hitchcock" medley and wore the above costumes in black with silver accents. Perfect; sublime and oh-so-good! Oh and yes, their Free Skate was one of my Top All-time FAVORITES of the entire season!

Elena Ilinykh and Nikita Katsalapov of Russia, Short Dance to "Bei Mir Bist Du Schoen" by Sholom Secunda--I dubbed these two the "Russian Ice Dance Supermodels" because they are so gorgeous. They need to thank their parents for them genes. I liked these Short Dance costumes. Elena was very on "Red Carpet" trend with the blush-colored dress and very "the Great Gatsby" (also on trend!). And Nikita looked polished, elegant and perfectly put together in his tuxedo.

Elena Ilinykh and Nikita Katsalapov of Russia, Free Dance to Music from Swan Lake Tchaikovsky--One word: Flawless. Exquisite is another word. These costumes were modern and at the same time, classic. Beautiful. One of my favorites of the whole 2013-2014 season.

Gabriela Kubova and Matej Novak of Czech Republic, Short Dance to Vive Le Swing by In-Grid, You Are the One For Me, and Soy lo que me das--Gabriela is a ruffle queen in this purple costume. I kinda like it; the color is impacting and the sequined bodice applique over nude illusion and ruffled tiers with bound hems looks finished and well-executed. Matej's Nehru-collared suit is elegant and very chic. I really like the sequined band collar and sleeve cuffs. I want an ensemble like this for my next "Black tie" event.

Anna Cappellini and Luca Lanotte of Italy, Free Dance to Overture from Barber of Seville by G. Rossini--As you can see from the above photo, this Italian Ice Dance pair won the gold medal. Their costumes were creative and added both "Period" (his) and Fashion (hers) elements. While I liked her multi-tiered organza ruffled skirt, I wasn't so sure of the fan-pleated top section with rosettes. That top looked very "whickety-wack" (how do you say that in Italian?). But as a whole, they looked nice together. Congrats for getting the gold!


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