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Jul 3, 2012

A Pipe Dream

For various reasons, I am usually loath to trot out music suggestions for figure skaters but I had the most vivid dream recently. Though I will refrain from spilling all the details of said dream publicly lest someone decides to get all Freudian on me, a particularly memorable portion of the dream involved Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir skating to the music of Richard Wagner's Tristan und Isolde:

It was strangely compelling. Ms. Virtue was dressed in a wedding dress √† la Kirsten Dunst in Lars von Trier's Melancholia and the pair skated around the ice in the throes of savage lust and angst and adulterous face-stroking. Also, I'm quite sure the choreography involved Mr. Moir stabbing Ms. Virtue at the end, then turning the pretend dagger upon himself, both collapsing upon the ice at the program's end in a way that is probably banned by the ISU. And best of all? The dream-program had no twizzles.

Though I will be willing to forgo the melodramatic stabby ending in the context of a proper competition program, this dream is obviously the summation of my heretofore inchoate desires to see a skating program set to the music of Wagner's Tristan und Isolde. Interestingly, the only instances of Tristan und Isolde I can recall being used by skaters belongs to Canadian skaters only:

Clearly, this Canadian tendency towards Wagner must be continued through Virtue/Moir as the mere thought of Cynthia Phaneuf or Amelie Lacoste skating to Tristan und Isolde is harrowing. One must note, however, that Sale/Pelletier sadly chose a rather blasphemous bastardized version of Wagner's masterpiece (unforgivable!), and Jeffrey Buttle's program used Tristan und Isolde for only about the first minute or so of his quickly-scrapped Glenn Gould tribute long program. So here is my wish: a Virtue/Moir free dance using the full-bodied non-muzak orchestral version of Wagner's Tristan und Isolde prelude that is both appropriately angsty and does justice to Eduard Hanslick's rather memorable description of the opera as reminiscent of "one of the old Italian paintings of a martyr whose intestines are slowly unwound from his body on a reel."


  1. I think Kexin Zhang skated to Tristan and Isolde a while was completely blank though as usual, her facial expression remains the same (blank) even to this moment probably.

    1. Ha!

      However, Kexin Zhang skated to Maxime Rodriguez's Tristan and Isolde, not Wagner's...probably a good thing, actually.