If you were anywhere near my Twitter timeline a few days ago, you’ll know that I fell hard for the anime Yuri On Ice!
I regret nothing.
If you’re like me, and dying for more YOI and sad that it’s over (for now), allow me to ease your pain with a few of my favorite figure skating routines. I’ve been in the skating fandom since, oh, birth, and I’ve got a long, long list of favorites so this was a very difficult narrowing.
Johnny Weir “I love you, I hate you”
Having to choose only one Johnny Weir routine was like carving out a piece of my soul. I have so much love for Johnny Weir, and it has always bothered me that older, more traditional, *cough* homophobic *cough* participants in the sport wrote him off as being too flamboyant or, in the words of my mother, “out there.” Go ahead and say that to his three national championships.
Alexei Yagudin “Winter”
An Olympic and four-time world champion, Alexei stole my heart in the 2002 Olympics in Salt Lake City. This is his short program, which he performed for several years after retiring from competitions.
I’m sorry but I’ll never be over that footwork. Never.
Oksana Baiul “The Swan”
Oksana won the 1994 gold medal, at just 16, and became the first Olympic champion to represent an independent Ukraine. This is her exhibition skate from Lillehammer.
When I saw this performance as a child, I immediately wanted to be just like Oksana. I signed up for skating lessons shortly thereafter, and my mild interest with figure skaters became full-blown obsession.
I’m fairly certain I still have the ticket stub for The Nutracker on Ice in which Oksana was Clara and Viktor Petrenko was Drosselmeier.
Ekaterina Gordeeva and Sergei Grinkov “Moonlight Sonata”
It was a love story on the ice, and they told it beautifully. Ekaterina and Sergei’s love story brought such passion and artistry to their skating, and there was hardly a competition they entered that they didn’t win.
Just one year after they won gold in Lillehammer, Sergei suffered a massive heart attack while on the ice and passed away. Ekaterina returned to the ice eventually, but as a solo skater, never returning full-time to pair skate and never taking another partner. The following routine was her tribute to her late husband, which she performed in 1996. I still can’t watch it without crying.
Michelle Kwan “Fields of Gold”
“Success isn’t always measured by a gold medal.”
Michelle’s career proves that.
Bonus: Jason Brown “Riverdance”
Okay, my doves, I hope that helps alleviate some YOI withdrawals. Have a favorite figure skating routine? Send it to me on twitter or in the comments.