Sunday, December 19, 2010

12 Days of Christmas: Day 7: Ilia Kulik's "A House is Not a Home" by John Pagano

Ilia Kulik is a phenomenal athlete. His jumps are so big, light, and natural--seemingly springing up out of nowhere. Brian Boitano, while commentating at the 1996 World Championships, where Kulik finished second to American champion Todd Edlredge, said that it is almost as if Kulik is being pulled by strings up into the rafters as he jumps. His outstanding, pure jumping technique helped Ilia win the Olympic gold medal at the 1998 Olympics for his homeland of Russia. Ilia interpreted music quite well then, but at the tender age of 20, he was yet to mature as a performer on the ice. Five years later, at the 2003 Ice Wars competition, Ilia, showed the world that he had developed into a mature, sensitive, artist, who truly had the whole package: wonderful jumps and all around wonderful skating. I remember loving this program the first time I saw it, and I still love it today. Ilia is fantastic! I marvel at his skating!!

Ilia, who some say is the Leonardo DiCaprio look-alike of skating (Ilia even had a small role in a Hollywood film, in the 2000 film, "Centre Stage"), is one of the most naturally-talented and gifted skaters that the skating world has seen. I hope you enjoy this delightful performance to "A House is Not a Home." Happy 7th day of Christmas!


  1. Thanks for posting this... it was wonderful to see again. I'm a big fan of Burt Bacharach and this song (especially the Luther Vandross version) and an even bigger fan of Ilia Kulik. What a great combination of song to skater!

    I don't remember which team won -- do you?

    Happy Holidays!

  2. I was in the audience when Ilia debuted this program live with Burt Bacharach and James Ingram. Beautiful. One of the few times a program has brought me to tears.

  3. I think Team Europe won that competition. If I can ever find the VHS, I'll go watch it and check the results!