Tuesday, September 7

Asada's New Coach and Season Debut

Nobuo Sato with a student
photo courtesy daylife.com
Two-time and reigning World Champion Mao Asada of Japan has finally found a new coach: Nobuo Sato, current coach of Takahiko Kozuka and former coach of three-time World medalist Fumie Suguri as well as his daughter, 1994 World Champion Yuka Sato. Asada was previously coached by Russian Tatiana Tarasova through the Vancouver Games, and she will keep Tarasova as the choreographer of her new competitive short program. Mao debuted the program, set to an Alfred Schnittke Tango, at this weeks "Artistry on Ice" show in Beijing. Here is a video courtesy of jamaicadays and TeensTeve.


Mao obviously had mistakes on the jump elements as well as a big wobble at the beginning of her combination spin, but I have to say that I really like the final position in the spin and the way she is able to hold it for so long. The second half of the program seems like it will be really dynamic if she is "on", so I don't think this first outing (in an exhibition show, mind you) is really indicative of anything just yet. We shall see. Mao's Liebestraum free skate, choreographed by Lori Nichol, is what I am really interested to see.

11 comments:

Natalie said...

The footwork sequence near the end is fantastic as is that combo spin position you mentioned. I think Sato may be a good move. He does great work with edges and I think, Asada has great edges but could sell them more. Maybe skating around Kozuka could help.

Anonymous said...

The music for this program is as repetitive as last year's Masquerade. It would have worked for someone with extreme artistic/balletic qualities of Klimova (see Klimova/Ponomorenko's Masquerade 1993 - a beuatiful Tarasova piece) or Sasha Cohen. Mao does not have enough artistry to make the music step into the background and create a melody through her skating.

Anonymous said...

I always laugh at these remarks of "enough artistry" as if artistry can be quantified. It all comes down to personal preferences. IMO.

Anonymous said...

Relieved to hear the news!
She has too much potential to keep being bothered over the coach issue.

Sato is an expert to improve skating and spins as you can see from Yuka Sato, Yukari Nakano and Kozuka.

I'm also happy to see her tango doesn't include any easy "sexy" choreography, which I don't think suit her. Her leg kept thrusted straight upwards in the change foot combination spin (note it's not just a combination spin but is a change foot) and in the short spiral, as well as the incrediblly difficult, energetic step seq, is just simply beautiful both athletically and artistically!

Look forward to further refinement of this program!

Anonymous said...

mao is simply awsome, I can't wait to see this program when it's polished and performed in competition, it's going to be exquicite, and for those who think mao isn't artistic, it really makes me laugh, she is one of the most artistic skater there is.. her lines and positions are like no other not to mention that it's effortless...

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Anonymous said...

she's a great skater but it seems as if her movements are not moving along to the music.

Anonymous said...

She really needs to work on her artistry. Doesn't feel like a tango at all. Her programs all seem to look the same no matter what the music is.

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