Sunday, November 6, 2011

Highlights from Skate Canada: Patrick Chan's "Concierto de Aranjuez" by Joaquin Rodrigo

At last weekend's Skate Canada, Patrick Chan moved up from third after the short program to finish first by less than three points. The reigning World Champion had some struggles with his quadruple Toe Loop in both the short and the long, but rebounded after a fall on the quad in the freeskate with a beautiful quadruple Toe Loop-Triple Toe Loop combination. As commentator Michael Weiss pointed out, Patrick displayed a short-term memory, a critical skill that a top skater needs to have. Immediately after making a mistake, Patrick brushed it aside and didn't allow it to disrupt the rest of his program.

I'm a fan of his new freeskate to "Concierto de Aranjuez" by Joaquin Rodrigo, choreographed by Lori Nichol. Many other skaters have used this music in the past, including Michelle Kwan during the '02-03 season, and Evgeny Plushenko during his '09-10 comeback season, but Patrick brings something different to his rendition. Even though I've heard the music many times before, Patrick makes it feel fresh. I might be in the minority here, but I was never a huge fan of his Phantom of the Opera freeskate (I can't quite pinpoint why...maybe it was the music cuts. My favorite program of his was his "Four Seasons" by Vivaldi during the '07-08 season), but I immediately liked this new one. I see growth in Patrick as a skater and performer. He exudes confidence and his performance is well-rounded and complete. I can't wait to see how "Concierto de Aranjuez" looks when Patrick skates clean.

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