Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Skating With the Stars Week Two Recap and Standings

Added December 9, 2010:

Skating With the Stars Episode 2 - Kisses and Cries! (by OlympianUncut)

'Skating With the Stars' - Week Two

After what seemed like a pretty smooth first week, tonight things got tense on the ice. Jonny Moseley was skating with a pulled groin and Bethenny Frankel has barely slept in weeks. And the judges weren't holding back this week... every point had to be earned — there were no freebies!

The pairs this week ice danced to either a Tango or Swing.

Each week, there will be precise figure skating rules the Stars must follow. Throughout the competition, they'll need to perform specific "Required Elements" in their routine. This week there were two:

Required Element #1: The Step Sequence. A footwork pattern of turns and rotations in the routine. Judges will be looking for tricky toe-steps and smooth turns on the blades edges that must be executed in unison.

Required Element #2: The Dance Lift. During the lift, the pair must travel across the ice, and the woman must release her hold during this move. Judges are looking for speed, strength, and balance for the men, and body control and grace for the women.

Skyrocketing to the top of the leaderboard in Week 2 were Brandon Mychal Smith & Keauna McLaughlin. And not only did Brandon impress on the ice, we also got to see him in his element on the roller rink. Keauna couldn't keep up! As for their Tango, Johnny Weir said it concisely: "That was amazing... my head's going to blow off."

Last week's leaders, Rebecca Budig & Fred Palascak tied with Jonny Moseley & Brooke Castile for 2nd place. The judges loved Jonny's musicality, but are pushing Rebecca to show more emotion in her moves.

Bethenny Frankel & Ethan Burgess fought through her exhaustion to earn decent scores, but the judges felt that Bethenny was too stiff.

And there were some falls this week. Vince Neil stumbled to the ice at the end of his hold with partner Jennifer Wester. The judges scored them low for technicality, but Laurie Ann was impressed with Vince's musicality, saying he was "absolutely Tango."

Sean Young fell twice in her 40's-inspired Swing with partner Denis Petukhov, disappointing the judges who were otherwise complimentary about how much she loosened up from her performance last week and showed great character on the ice.

In the end, with the two weeks of judges scores combined with last week's viewer votes, Sean Young became the first star eliminated from SWTS.

The Scores:

Jonny & Brooke skated a Swing to "Jump Jive & Wail" by the Brian Setzer Orchestra

Technique: 24 points (8/8/8)
Artistic Impression: 20 points (7/6/7)
Total: 44 points

Vince & Jennifer skated a Tango to "El Tango de Roxanne" from the Mouiln Rouge Soundtrack

Technique: 13 points (6/3/4)
Artistic Impression: 17 points (6/6/5)
Total: 30 points

Bethenny & Ethan skated a Swing to "The Boy does Nothing" by Alesha Dixon

Technique: 17 points (6/5/6)
Artistic Impression: 16 points (6/5/5)
Total: 33 points

Brandon & Keauna skated a Tango to "Shut Up" by Black Eyed Peas

Technique: 24 points (8/8/8)
Artistic Impression: 25 points (9/8/8)
Total: 49 points

Sean & Denis skated a Swing to "Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy" by Bette Midler

Technique: 12 points (5/3/4)
Artistic Impression: 18 points (5/7/6)
Total: 30 points

Rebecca & Fred skated a Tango to "Whatever Lola Wants" by Sarah Vaughan

Technique: 23 points (8/7/8)
Artistic Impression: 21 points (8/6/7)
Total: 44 points

Eliminated: Sean & Denis (30 points scored this week)

Standings Week Two:

Brandon & Keauna  49 Points
Rebecca & Fred  44 Points
Jonny & Brooke  44 Points
Bethenny & Ethan  33 Points
Vince & Jennifer  30 points

SWTS Interview with Johnny Weir (This interview was actually done after Week One.)

Unfortunately, week two of 'Skating With the Stars' was not without drama.  Near the beginning of her segment Bethenny Frankel clearly says 'F**k Johnny Weir'.  ABC did a poor job of bleeping her comment, and the fact it was still in her segment indicates the network may be looking to create drama and perhaps help ratings, which for the first week of the show at least, were more than respectable.  Aside from the fact Bethenny's comment shows an extreme lack of class, not to mention poor sportsmanship; it also did nothing to calm the rantings of some of her more extreme 'fans'.  They have been wailing on the judges, Johnny Weir in particular, since the first episode was shown last week. 

This week the rantings of some of the more extreme elements of her fandom went way over the line in sending rude, nasty and homophobic tweets to Johnny Weir.  I sometimes check Johnny's Twitter feed to see what fans are talking about to him; however I had no plans to check his feed Monday night until I heard from some other fans some rude things were being said to him by so-called 'fans' of Bethenny Frankel.  I could not believe what I saw when I went to his feed and started reading.  Some of the Tweets were what a person might expect from someone disappointed in how their favorite was scored (although the one that commented Vince Neil had fallen on his 'fat ass' was uncalled for), and the fans were (unfairly) taking it out on Johnny Weir.  However, some went way over the line; hurling gay slurs at Johnny, accusing him of hating and conspiring against Bethenny, and absurdly of conspiring with Jill Zarin against Bethenny. Apparently some of these fans genuinely believe there is some sort of conspiracy against Bethenny Frankel engineered by Jill Zarin (Real Housewives of New York City).  Check out my friend Misfit Mime's Blog Special to the Blog: Interview With Denis Petukhov! (And Right Back Atcha, Bethenny...)  regarding Week Two of 'Skating With the Stars'.  She tried to make some sense of what was being said by two of the more extreme Bethenny fan tweeters in Johnny's feed, and both of them flat out told her they believed there was a conspiracy against Bethenny.  One of these two people writes a daily Blog titled 'I Hate Jill Zarin'.  Yes, really!  (MM's Blog includes a wonderful exclusive interview with Denis Petukhov, and also addresses Bethenny Frankel's comment directed at Johnny Weir.) 

While I would maintain Bethenny Frankel can not be held responsible for the extreme behavior of some of her fans any more than Johnny Weir can, I can hold her responsible for saying nothing publicly about their behavior; therefore allowing it to continue unabated the same as if she agreed with it.  It is impossible to believe she knows nothing about what is going on with this segment of her fandom.  One of the things that is most disappointing is August 3, 2010 Bethenny hosted the GLAAD Manhattan event at which Johnny Weir appeared.  They were photographed together at the event and seemed to get along fine.  The fact she hosted this event would suggest that she has awareness of, and cares about, issues that affect the LGBT community.  That she would not now, in any way, shape or form, speak out against those of her fans who are hurling insults and gay slurs at Johnny Weir via Twitter, is extremely disappointing.  In fact her most recent tweet on the subject was a jab at the judges:      
I guess her comment about Johnny Weir was her own attempt to make HERSELF feel important?  I also do not understand what was nasty about the comments made by Johnny Weir or either of the other two judges on the show.  Why can Bethenny and her fans not realize maybe the judges might be accurately assessing her performances on 'Skating With the Stars'? 

It's sad that Bethenny has made no attempt on either her website, Twitter page, or Facebook page to request the more extreme elements of her fandom not attack Johnny Weir personally the way they have been doing.  Johnny Weir was bothered enough by what was being said that he posted this Tweet on his way to LAX for a long flight to Australia:
Now that I have all of that off of my chest, here is Week Two of 'Skating With the Stars' the full episode!  The video can not be embedded from it's current source, sorry!

A secondary source for Episode Two:

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Johnny Weir's Interview on WGN Radio

Johnny Weir called in to WGN Radio host Brian Noonan's show on Friday November 26th.
Here is Noonan's Tweet about the interview:

Brian Noonan is the weekend overnight host on WGN AM720 in Chicago. He is on Friday night/Saturday morning 2-5 am and Saturday night/Sunday morning 12-5 am. He suggests listeners tune in for some late night fun at Brian Noonan WGN Radio!

Here is the direct link to the MP3 of Johnny's interview with him:

The interview is (of course) audio only, and there is also an option to download the MP3.

Special Bonus:

In case of difficulty with the above link this radio interview from Australia may also be accessed via this link!

Friday, November 26, 2010

Skating With the Stars Week One Recap and Standings

The long awaited (by us fans of Johnny Weir course!) premiere of 'Skating With the Stars' was this past Monday November 22nd.  The official website for the show has information on all six of the professional skaters, plus the six celebrities, the hosts and the three judges; as well as recaps of each episode, music the teams skated to, scores the teams received, and videos of the skaters practicing on each of their team pages.

'Skating With the Stars' Episode Guide

About the Vote (How the voting works, phone numbers for each team, the rules, how skaters are eliminated, etc.)

Voting FAQs

Week One Recap and Standings

Each week, there will be precise figure skating rules the Stars must follow. Throughout the competition, they'll need to perform specific "Required Elements" in their routine. This week there were two:

Required Element #1: The One Foot Assisted Glide. Stars are judged on how steady they are on one blade.

Required Element #2: The Pair Spin. With the option to play it safe with a basic two-foot spin, or a spin on one skate, the pair can either spin side-by-side or together as a pair.

Brandon & Keauna skated to "American Boy"

Technique: 16 points (6/5/5)
Artistic Impression: 20 points (7/7/6)
Total: 36 points

Sean & Denis skated to "Bubble"

Technique: 16 points (6/5/5)
Artistic Impression: 18 points (7/5/6)
Total: 34 points
Jonny & Brooke skated to "Higher Ground"

Technique: 21 points (7/7/7)
Artistic Impression: 19 points (6/6/7)
Total: 40 points

Rebecca & Fred skated to "Closer"

Technique: 21 points (7/7/7)
Artistic Impression: 24 points (8/8/8)
Total: 45 points

Vince & Jennifer skated to "I Like the Way You Move"

Technique: 14 points (6/4/4)
Artistic Impression: 14 points (6/4/4)
Total: 28 points
Bethenny & Ethan skated to "Right Round"

Technique: 15 points (5/5/5)
Artistic Impression: 14 points (5/5/4)
Total: 29 points

At the end of week one the standings are as follows:

1) Rebecca Budig and Fred Palascak - 45 points
2) Johnny Moseley and Brooke Castile - 40 points
3) Brandon Mychal Smith and Keauna McLaughlin - 36 points
4) Sean Young and Denis Petukhov - 34 points
5) Bethenny Frankel & Ethan Burgess - 29 points
6) Vince Neil & Jennifer Wester - 28 points

According to the rules the judges rankings will now be combined with viewer votes, and the pair with the lowest combined score from judges’ scores and viewer vote ranking points will be eliminated.

Melissa Gregory - SWTS Episode 1 Correspondence (Melissa Gregory, wife and skating partner of skating pro Denis Petukhov, offers her impressions of Week One of 'Skating With the Stars').



Sean Young & Denis Petukhov
Bethenny Frankel and Ethan Burgess
Brandon Mychal Smith & Keauna McLaughlin
Jonny Moseley & Brooke Castile
Rebecca Budig & Fred Palascak
Vince Neil & Jennifer Wester


Vernon Kay
Tanith Belbin


Dick Button
Johnny Weir
Laurie Ann Gibson

Getty Images and ABC.com have photos from 'Skating With the Stars'.

Videos from Week One of 'Skating With the Stars':

Week One, Part One (Full Episode From ABC.com)
Week One, Part Two (Full Episode From ABC.com, Part Two)

Visit My Blog Johnny Weir on Week One of 'Skating With the Stars'

Please also visit my friend Misfit Mimes Blog SWTS: Spectacular! Weirvelous! Totally Sparkly! So Want To See (More)!  for some great insight into the first episode of the show!

A secondary source for Episode One, Part One of SWTS:

A secondary source for Episode One, Part Two of SWTS:

A secondary source for Meet the Cast:

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Johnny Weir on Week One of 'Skating With the Stars'

The long awaited (by us fans of Johnny Weir course!) premiere of 'Skating With the Stars' was this past Monday November 22nd.  The official website for the show has information on all six of the professional skaters, plus the six celebrities, the hosts and the three judges; as well as recaps of each episode, music the teams skated to, scores the teams received, and videos of the skaters practicing on each of their team pages.

Below you will find links to photos, videos, skater bios, star bios, twitter accounts, information on voting and a Blog from my friend Misfit Mimes about Week One of 'Skating With the Stars'.

'Skating With the Stars' Episode Guide
About the Vote (How the voting works, phone numbers for each team, the rules, how skaters are eliminated, etc.)
Voting FAQs

Professional Skaters:
Denis Petukhov
Ethan Burgess
Keauna Mclaughlin
Brooke Castile
Fred Palascak
Jennifer Wester

Sean Young
Bethenny Frankel
Brandon Mychal Smith
Jonny Moseley
Rebecca Budig
Vince Neil

Sean Young & Denis Petukhov
Bethenny Frankel and Ethan Burgess
Brandon Mychal Smith & Keauna McLaughlin
Jonny Moseley & Brooke Castile
Rebecca Budig & Fred Palascak
Vince Neil & Jennifer Wester

Vernon Kay
Tanith Belbin

Dick Button
Johnny Weir
Laurie Ann Gibson

Johnny Weir performed his 'Poker Face' program with a new costume and slightly different choreography during the show.  Due partly to the small size of the show's ice rink he skated a shorter version of the program and modified the choreography in accordance.

Getty Images and ABC.com have photos from 'Skating With the Stars'.

Videos from Week One of 'Skating With the Stars':
Watch 'Skating With the Stars' OnLine
Johnny Weir talks 'Skating With the Stars' at the AMAs

Video of Johnny Weir on Access Hollywood talking about 'Skating With the Stars'

Johnny Weir's 'Poker Face' performance
Week One, Part One (Full Episode From ABC.com)
Week One, Part Two (Full Episode From ABC.com, Part Two)

Please also visit my friend Misfit Mimes Blog SWTS: Spectacular! Weirvelous! Totally Sparkly! So Want To See (More)!  for some great insight into the first episode of the show!

'Skating With the Stars' on Twitter:


@brandonsmithceo – Brandon Mychal Smith
@jonnymoseley – Jonny Moseley
@RebeccaBudig – Rebecca Budig
@Bethenny - Bethenny Frankel
@TheVinceNeil - Vince Neil

@FredPalascak – Fred Palascak
@GregoryPetukhov – Denis Petukhov
@Jennifer Wester – Jennifer Wester
@Ethan_Burgess - Ethan Burgess
@BrookeCastile - Brooke Castile
@Kiksmclaughlin - Keauna Mclaughlin

@BoomKack - Laurie Ann Gibson
@JohnnyGWeir - Johnny Weir
@DickButton - Dick Button

@TanithJLB - Tanith Belbin
@OfficialVernonK - Vernon Kay

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Johnny Weir at the 2010 American Music Awards

Johnny Weir was a presenter at the 2010 American Music Awards.  He tweeted at 5:18pm he was running very late to the show.  He and his agent Tara Modlin barely arrived in time to walk the Red Carpet and meet the press.  However, meet the press he did!
Johnny presented the award for 'Favorite Latin Music Artist' with Christina Milian.  This award was won by Shakira, who was not present to accept her award.  At that point Johnny, who was holding the award, remarked, " Shakira couldn't be here tonight, so, this is mine now." 

I have posted seven videos here, and links to several more.  Lots of Johnny to enjoy here!

Red Carpet Show on ABC

Johnny arriving at the American Music Awards

Danny Gokey and Stuart Brazell interview Johnny on the Red Carpet.

(Another Source) Danny Gokey and Stuart Brazell interview Johnny on the Red Carpet.

Johnny Weir discusses 'Skating' show at AMAs

Johnny Weir Fashion Snapshot AMA 2010

Johnny Weir Fashion Snapshot #2 AMA 2010

Johnny presents an award with Christina Milian.

Quick glimpse at around :30 of Johnny dancing to Enrique Iglesias.

Backstage Interview with Johnny by Michelle Marie.  (AMA 2010 Backstage Interview with Johnny Weir - Michelle Marie interviews Johnny Weir about his fashionable outfit and hair for the evening. Weir then talks about his upcoming role as a judge on Skating With the StarsSkating With The Stars as well as his own skating routine that airs on the show's first episode.)

AMA Interviews Johnny appears from approximately :30 to around 1:00 in this post-show interview video.

For some reason I am having difficulty uploading photos today, therefore I am going to simply provide some links where photos of Johnny Weir at the American Music Awards may be found.  There are photos of him at the pre show gifting events, in the press room, on the red carpet, talking about his outfit, being interviewed backstage, presenting his award, and also post awards show.

WireImage.com photos of Johnny Weir at the American Music Awards.
Getty Images photos of Johnny Weir at the American Music Awards.
Life.com photos of Johnny Weir at the American Music Awards.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

RiaNovosti Interview with Viktor Petrenko Re Sochi 2014

Just added:  Below this translation I have added an English translation from Google Translate provided by my friend Li.

English translation via Babylon of RiaNovosti interview with 1992 Men's Olympic Figure Skating Champion Viktor Petrenko re figure skating in Sochi, Russia in 2014. 

I have the translation software on my computer, but I had to put the translation here due to some difficulty with the link to the actual translation.  Even though it is a bit difficult to understand in places, I left the translation exactly as I got it from Babylon, except for a clarification of a few of the names.   


Sport.Tourismфигуристам-veterans in Sochi would be difficult to champion Olympiad Petrenko

14:1817 /11/2010

Moskva, 17 Nov-RIA News. фигуристам previous generations, contemplating speak during the Olympics 2014 at Sochi, be a difficult struggle with very talented young people, considers SOVETSKIY and Ukrainian фигурист Viktor Petrenko, Olympic champion 1992 and Bronze winner Olympiad-1988.

Recently 28-year-old Russian Eugene плющенко (Plushenko), Olympic champion 2006, said, that is going to participate in the games-2014. Its example, as reported in the week foreign media, will follow 26-year-old àìåðèêàíåö Johnny вейр (Weir), which him Petrenko. does not exclude participation in Sochi Olympiad ровесник la ex-World Champion French Brian жубер (Joubert).

"Old Kony slots, of course, do not detract, but had not make, and philosophically observed Petrenko in conversation with RIA News. -is difficult to anticipate that the плющенко, La and жубера in Sochi could happen, but it seems to me that the current youth exclusively is strong. In the fight against the "old" would not be easy. Everything will depend on the extent to which experienced athletes psychologically will cope with attack young. But did not torture ".

"desire of my ward Johnny speak in Sochi, of course, it was commendable, and with laughter added Petrenko. -but only for the trainings in this year I it is not yet seen it. For example, went on several occasions go before any show. But it does n't work seriously. Well, probably, it has continued period of rest. And that, since many, to Olympiad four more years. "

Olympic champion believes that the adopted before the season changes in rules, aimed at, to encourage athletes more frequently try perform четверные скачкi, go figure skating to benefit.

"I have already see trend to more attempts execution has four traffic, said Petrenko. -at the stage Grand Prix in Canada local фигурист (Kevin Reynolds) sang two different leap-frog in an arbitrary programme ".

"It is fitting that courage is encouraged, and added specialist. -It now if прыжок недокрученным by a quarter traffic is produced, sportsman still receives 70 per cent of its value. We have long sought technical committee ISU introduce such changes in the Rules. "

In the same time Petrenko considers an important skill фигуриста own technology Catania. "Canadian Patrick Chan, of course, can fall three times in one programme, but I understand, for which he is given a high second evaluation, and stressed companion RIA News. -And you will understand when or how many перебежек he makes in dispersing. I will: tracked the Chan only four return for the short program. "

On the Olympic champion, this fact "clearly said of the highest level ownership коньком." "The Fall Chan punished, low points he has received, and noted specialist. -But skill Catania and the other components of the excellent level ".

Here's a google translate attempt, it's a litte easier to understand I think:


Veteran skaters in Sochi will be difficult - Olympic champion Petrenko
...17/11/2010 14:18

MOSCOW, November 17 - RIA Novosti. Previous generation of skaters who are going to perform at the Olympic Games 2014 in Sochi will be a difficult fight against a very talented young people, said the Soviet and Ukrainian figure skater Viktor Petrenko, the Olympic champion in 1992 and bronze medalist, 1988.

Recently, 28-year old Russian Evgeny Plushenko, the Olympic champion in 2006, said he would take part in the Games in 2014. His example, as reported this week, foreign media, is going to follow the 26-year-old American Johnny Weir, who coached Petrenko. Does not exclude participation in the Sochi Olympics contemporary Weir former champion Frenchman Brian Joubert.

"Old horses furrows, of course, do not spoil, but deep down do not plow - Petrenko said philosophically in a conversation with RIA Novosti. - It is difficult to predict that Plushenko, Weir and Joubert in Sochi can get, but I think that today's youth is exceptionally strong . In the fight with her "old" will not be easy. It will all depend on how experienced athletes psychologically cope with the attack of the young. But no harm in trying. "

"The desire of my ward Johnny speak in Sochi, of course, commendable - with a laugh added Petrenko. - But only here in training this year, I have not seen it yet. So, come a few times to ride before some shows. But seriously, he does not works. Well, apparently, he still continues a period of rest. But what a lot of time, before the Olympics for another four years. "

The Olympic champion believes that adoption of pre-season rule changes aimed at to encourage athletes often try to perform a quadruple jump, go skating advantage.

"I can already see the trend to more attempts at execution jumps four times - said Petrenko. - During the Grand Prix in Canada, a local skater (Kevin Reynolds) played two different quads in the long program."

"It is true that liberty is encouraged - added the expert. - Now if the jump turns Underturned a quarter turn, the athlete will still receive 70 percent of its value. We have been asked to ISU technical committee to introduce such changes in the rules."

At the same time Petrenko considers important skill to master skater skating technique. "Canadian Patrick Chan, of course, can fall three times in one program, but I understand why he gets such a high second assessment - the source stressed RIA Novosti. - And you will understand if I consider how many desertions it makes under acceleration. I help: counted for Chan just four rushes for all the short program. "

According to the Olympic champion, this fact is "clearly illustrates the highest level of proficiency in skates." "In the fall of Chan punished, the minuses he got, - stated the expert. - But the skill of riding and the other components in his excellent level."

Welcome to YouTube Johnny Weir!

Monday November 15 Johnny Weir Tweeted he had some videos of his Triple Axel training.  He told his fans he did not know how to post them, but he would find someone who did.
Of course this Tweet resulted in a number of fans telling Johnny how much they wanted to see the videos of him working on his triple axel, myself included.  He had told us the previous week his triple axel was back
after telling us the day before he was going to work on it:
Tuesday morning Johnny let us know he was still working on the videos:
Tuesday evening Johnny Tweeted he had learned how to use YouTube and gave his fans the URL's of two videos he had put up on his new Official Johnny Weir channel. 
The first video is a twenty-five second clip of a plain triple axel.
Of this video Johnny said 'A plain triple axel. YouTube is kind of fun.'

The second video is a twenty-nine second clip of a triple axel, triple toe loop combination.
Of this video Johnny said: 'I learned how to "YouTube"! Me trying to get in shape again at Hackensack, New Jersey. The triple toe was cheated, but I'm trying! I'm sorry for the video quality but I train alone and needed to ask the wall to film me.'

These two little videos resulted in numerous tweets at Twitter and comments underneath the videos at YouTube from fans telling Johnny how glad they were he was doing the triple axel again, we love your black practice outfit, welcome to YouTube, please post more videos and so on.  A number of us also volunteered to be his videographer, of course!  Johnny currently has several hundred views and over two hundred subscribers, and this number is certain to go up as he (hopefully) posts more video.  Yay Johnny! Welcome to YouTube!

My Tweet:
 My next Tweet:

Monday, November 15, 2010

Johnny Weir at the 'Deathly Hallows' U.S. Premiere

November 15, 2010 Johnny Weir attended the U.S. premiere of 'Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows' at Alice Tully Hall in New York City.

Livestream Tweet:
'Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows' LiveStream!

Watch live streaming video from aplive at livestream.com

Tara steering ET to Johnny on the red carpet at 'Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows' U.S. premiere (1:13).

AP cameras on Johnny Weir on the red carpet at 'Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows' U.S. premiere (1:51).

AP cameras on Johnny Weir (Part 2) on the red carpet at 'Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows' U.S. premiere (1:27).

Talking to MTV News on the red carpet at 'Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows' U.S. premiere (2:35).

Johnny's premiere Tweet:
Johnny's Tweet about 'Deathly Hallows' after seeing it:
Johnny Weir at Harry Potter Premiere NYC   (Video of Johnny on the red carpet talking to Sarah Jessica Parker, her husband Matthew Broderick and their young son James Wilkie.  Added by sal1mineo.)

Johnny talks about 'Skating With the Stars' on Access Hollywood.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Johnny Weir is 'Diva of the Year' in the 'Out 100' Special Issue

Added December 28, 2010:

Ryan Jay bumps into award-winning figure skater Johnny Weir on the red carpet where they catch up on Harry Potter, girls and shoes! (Video Interview on the Red Carpet at 'Out 100' party)

Just added:

Read my friend Misfit Mime's Blog:

Congratulations, Johnny: Cover Star of Out Magazine's "Out 100," and Also "Diva of the Year"!  for a wonderful take on this story.


The 16th Annual Out 100 (The One Hundred Most Compelling People of 2010)

By Out.com Editors

Distilled through the lens of three distinctly different gatherings -- Studio 54, the Stonewall Riots, and Truman Capote's Black and White Ball -- we chronicle the 100 LGBT movers and shakers who made big impressions on the cultural and social fabrics of this year.

'Out 100': Johnny Weir 'Our Diva of the Year'

'Out 100: Johnny Weir'
Our Diva of the Year.'

Tue Nov 09 2010

It’s difficult to deny the dynamism of Johnny Weir’s ice skating. Since he entered the sport 14 years ago at what many would consider the advanced age of 12, he has made two Olympic appearances, won three U.S. championships, and is currently ranked 12th in the world by the International Skating Union. But, ultimately, it’s his commitment to glamour and pageantry and his dexterous, playful handling of the controversies that dog him off the ice that have made him such a fascinating and beloved figure.

Weir has never hidden his fondness for flamboyance. He’s regularly dusted in a blizzard of glitter, his signature showpiece is a routine choreographed to Lady Gaga’s “Poker Face,” and earlier this year, when faced with death threats from animal rights activists horrified by his decision to wear fox fur, he was defiantly unapologetic, responding, “I’m not passionate about learning how animals get killed. I’m passionate about fashion, and I am not going to change something I love because someone tells me it’s wrong.”

Even two Canadian broadcasters’ suggestion that Weir undergo a “gender test” during the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics -- a comment that outraged the sports and LGBT worlds -- failed to ruffle the skater’s sequins. “Every little boy should be so lucky as to turn into me,” he countered.

Still, Weir is uncomfortable being labeled, refuses to discuss his sexuality, and is quick to point out that masculinity and femininity are not necessarily married to sexual preference. “I have a very clear opinion of my own sexuality. I’m not ashamed of anything, but I want it to be out there in my own words.”

Out there it will be early next year when Weir releases his memoir, in which he promises to finally address the pink elephant riding the Zamboni machine around the rink. The book will be the latest addition to the skater’s growing media empire, which exponentially expanded in 2010 with a reality TV show, Be Good Johnny Weir, on the Sundance Channel, the recording of his first single, 'Dirty Love,' which he’s been told 'sounds a bit like Depeche Mode'; and starring on ABC's Skating With the Stars as a judge.

Topping off the banner year, which also saw Weir winning the 2010 Logo NewNowNext Award for Most Addictive Reality Star and the U.S. Figure Skating’s 2010 Readers’ Choice Award for Skater of the Year, was his acceptance of the Visibility Award from the Human Rights Campaign Seattle in September. “I never think of myself as an activist in any capacity, but I am glad that people can find strength and inspiration in my triumphs and defeats,” he says. “I hope that I can continue to inspire individuality in people regardless of age, sex, race, sexual orientation, or religion.”

See all of the 2010 'Out' 100 honorees here.
Behind the Shoot: Producing the Out 100

Behind the Shoot: The Out 100 Cover Stars

Popdemonium.com article about the 'Out.com'  Out 100 Special Issue
Zimbio.com: Johnny Weir and Others Covers Out Magazine

Saturday, November 6, 2010

November 7, 2010 JW Art Project Update

The team members from JWArtProject tweeted on November 6th (November 7th in Japan) that a title for the JW Art Book had been chosen, and that they are aiming for a January 2011 release.  The title will be 'I Feel Pretty'. 

Art Book Title Tweet in Japanese
Art Book Title Tweet
Newsletter Tweet
Newsletter Tweet in Japanese


The JW Art Project Team:

The Subject Johnny Weir (and Ping, of course!)
Photography by Hidemi Ogata
Hidemi Ogata's Blog
Art Direction by Yumi Hamano
Producer Chie Hosokawa
Stylist Toshiko Nishikawa
Hair and Make-Up Artist Hiroaki Yanagisawa

Additional Photography by Kiyotaka Mori
Kiyotaka Mori's Website

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

All That Skate Odyssey, Part Two

Once again, I apologize if I spell a person's name wrong, attribute something said or done to the wrong person, place someone in the wrong hotel, forget someones name or forget someone altogether!  I didn't take notes, lol, other than the frantic list of names I tried to send to myself on my cell phone so I wouldn't forget who was at our post show dinner!  Yes, I know, I'm bad!

Author's Note: If you see a link in this Blog, it will either take you to a web page or video link related to whatever is contained in the link.  For example, a link attached to a skater's name will either take you to their Twitter page, their official website, or some website in some way related to them.  I can sometimes be very link happy!


All That Skate Odyssey, Part Two

I hopped on the Number 60 bus headed west down 7th Street and asked the driver if he went to Figueroa Street, and the answer was yes. I know the employee at Greyhound had already told me what bus to take, however I just wanted to make sure.  I paid my $1.50 and found myself a seat.  There was a woman in a wheelchair trying to get on the bus, and the driver could not get the poor woman on!  He tried repeatedly to get her on, but his lift was just not working properly.  She finally had to wait for the next bus, and we departed.  The bus we were on was quite beat up looking, and I would guess several years old, which may have something to do with why the driver had trouble with his wheelchair lift. 

Los Angeles is my hometown, and ordinarily I would have been looking at everything and everyone we passed like a tourist; however in this case I was more interested in making sure I did not go past my stop.  Therefore I peered intently at every street sign we passed or approached.  A few minutes after I got on the bus my cell phone rang. I looked at the Caller I.D. and did not recognize the number, but I answered it anyway. It was Michael, and he told me he was with Judith (or was it Deborah?  EEK!) and asked me where I was.  I was excited to talk to him, because I had only ever talked to him online previously.  It was really wonderful to finally put a live voice, and later a face; to the person I had only spoken to online previously!  I think that is the best thing about the first time you meet a pen pal or an online friend in person, putting a voice and face to the person you've been talking to or writing to.  I indicated to Michael I was on my way on the bus and that it should not be too much longer until I arrived. 

As we approached Figueroa I signaled I needed to get off, and got off the bus just before the driver turned right.  I had more or less forgotten what the man back at Greyhound had told me about the driver turning right and how I was supposed to go left, so I crossed Figueroa and started heading straight or west, when I should have been heading south or left.  After walking a couple of blocks I started thinking I must be doing something wrong, and trying to figure out who I could call to help me figure it out.  I called two people I had exchanged cell phone numbers with and could not reach either of them.  I left a voicemail with one (can't remember who, sorry!  Ila maybe?), and sent a text to the other, which happened to be Deborah.  I called Michael back and asked him the address of the hotel.  He wasn't sure, so he tried to find I believe Julie or someone else who lived in the area and might have a better idea of how to tell me to get where I needed to be.  He finally put a hotel employee on the line, who helped me to figure out what I had done wrong and turned me in the correct direction.
I have to say, the difference between the part of town near the Staples Center and where the Greyhound bus depot is located only three miles away is like night and day.  As you turn down 7th Street and head east toward Greyhound and away from the revitalized area around L.A. Live and the Staples Center, the neighborhood gets less and less 'revitalized'.  By the time you reach the Greyhound station let's just say you don't appear to be in the best area of town, lol! 

Anyway, I made my way back to 7th Street and headed south toward the J.W. Marriott where my friends were waiting in the lobby to meet up with other Johnny Weir fans we had met on Facebook, Twitter and other places.  Several of the fans, plus the skaters were staying at the J.W. Marriott due to its proximity to the Staples Center.  Some fans, such as Deborah and Lauri and me were staying across the street at the Luxe City Center Hotel; and others like Judith were staying at the Ritz-Carlton, which is part of the same tower as the J.W. Marriott, but located on different floors with separate access.

When I walked into the lobby of the J.W. Marriott I thought I had an advantage over the others in that I knew what several of them looked like, but I didn't think they knew what I looked like.  I did not have any current photographs of myself, so the only photo anyone had seen of me was an old elementary school photo I had put up at Facebook at one time.  However, as someone later told me, I haven't changed that much, so she was able to recognize me from my old photo; so that meant she recognized me as fast as I recognized the friends I had seen pictures of.  I looked around for someone I either recognized or who looked like they were there to see Johnny.  To my left I saw several people either wearing pink, or with signs in pink and black!  I didn't want to walk up to strangers who were not connected to my group, so I looked to see if I could recognize anyone.  This is one of the points where I am probably going to mess up on a name or two, so please forgive me if and when I do!

I wandered over to the group and I honestly cannot remember if I or one of the ladies there spoke first, but within a couple of minutes we were introducing ourselves.  I remember Gary sitting on a chair and was introduced to him, as well as Lizzy and Teresa and a few other ladies.  I asked if anyone knew where Judith, Deborah and Michael were and was told Judith and Michael had gone up to Judith's room to grab something.  They thought Deborah might be outside, but were not sure.

Unfortunately things become a little bit of a blur for me.  I do have some difficulty remembering exactly who said what, and I do apologize for that!  I know that Lizzy gave me a lovely hand-made button to wear to the rehearsal, and she also showed me the beautiful Johnny themed hat she had made in person!  She also made a Lady Gaga themed hat she was able to give to Johnny at the hotel. 

Judith and Michael came down and I finally met both of them.  There were hugs all around, and then Deborah came in from outside and I met her as well.  Deborah showed me where Johnny had signed her leg above her tattoo and told me she was going to have the signature itself tattooed after she returned home.  He even told her she had gorgeous legs!      
I heard the entire story of the early lunch the group had dined on at the L.A. Market, and how Johnny had come by and met the group.  Of course I could not get there early enough for the lunch which also meant I had missed meeting Johnny early that afternoon and also in the lobby, sniffle, sniffle!

By this time it was getting close to the time we needed to head over the Staples Center for the dress rehearsal.  We got ourselves organized with signs to wave at Johnny so he knew we were there, and Ila quickly brought me upstairs and let me leave my two bags in her hotel room temporarily while we went over to the dress rehearsal.  The Staples Center is basically just across the street from the hotel, but we wanted to allow a few minutes to get over to the arena and find our seats. 

We all started walking over to the Staples Center as a group, talking and joking as we went.  I walked with Judith, Michael, Lisa, Lizzy and I am so sorry I can't remember everyone who was right there with us at this point!  As we were crossing the street, while talking to some members of our group, Judith went to step up on to the curb with her left leg, and her foot slipped off and she overextended her calf muscle.  She said she felt a tearing pain and a 'pop' and her leg started to hurt with what turned out to be a muscle strain in her left calf (Judith later said she was grateful it had not been her ankle).  She had to sit down for a while, but insisted she could make it over to the Staples Center. 

We started walking more slowly with Judith between Michael and someone else the entire way.  Lizzy and several others either stopped or came back to us and asked what was wrong or if Judith was okay.  We found ourselves talking about how fans always have a long distance to walk no matter what event they are attending or where it is held.  Based on the size of arenas or stadiums, and how much area they need to have around them, I suppose this only makes sense.  Of course stadiums and arenas also must accommodate the use of wheelchairs and provide access for them. 

I remember when I attended the first World Professional Figure Skating Championship at the then brand new MCI Arena (now known as the Verizon Center) in Washington, D.C. one of my friends also attending, a lovely woman named Miriam, used a wheelchair.  She was thrilled because wheelchair access involved taking the fans down a special elevator and through the backstage area to their rink side seats.  In her short time passing through the backstage area she was able to catch glimpses of several skaters including our hero Brian Boitano!          

Poor Judith was in pain, and we only walked as fast as she could walk, even though she insisted we could go ahead if we wanted to.  Once we arrived at the Staples Center we had to pass through security and have our bags and/or purses searched.  I had placed my RCA Small Wonder digital video camera in its small velvet bag in my purse and put my keys and cell phone in the bowl as instructed.  I was afraid I would set the scanner off with my barrette (I've done that before at the local courthouse, for example!), or that my video camera would be discovered; however neither of these things happened.  Michael, however, set off the scanner several times as did a few other fans entering the Staples Center. 

Once inside Judith asked some arena personnel if she could get some ice for her leg, and one of the security personnel sent for a customer service person to try and help us.  As it turned out no concessions or anything were open, and they were unable to provide her with any ice at that point.  (I was hungry since I hadn't eaten since six am, and was disappointed to not be able to at least grab a snack or a drink; and since our dinner had been changed to a lunch, I did not know when I would have a chance to eat.  However, I was more concerned about Judith at this point and really did not understand why the Staples Center could not find some ice for an injured patron.  They were very nice, however.)    

We proceeded slowly from the entrance doors and into the arena itself.  All of us 'Ultimate Skate Experience' VIP ticket holders were first given lanyards announcing us as VIPs, and then we turned in our tickets at a special table and were given copies of the souvenir program.  The program came with our 'Ultimate Skate Experience' ticket package along with the lanyard and the dress rehearsal, which we had been told would include a question and answer session; other fans had to purchase the programs separately, and no one other than VIP ticket holders was given the lanyards.

Our dress rehearsal tickets (issued separately from tickets for the show) had row and seat numbers printed on them so we were all under the impression there would be assigned seating. Once we arrived at the Staples Center, however, we discovered it actually was not assigned seating. All the V.I.P. ticket holders attending the dress rehearsal were directed to two sections on the lower level at the far end of the ice surface (opposite where the skaters came out) on a first come, first served basis as far as the seating went.  Had we known this we might have left the hotel sooner so we could have arrived at the arena earlier, however we decided to make do.

With Judith's leg bothering her she, Michael and I sat in the highest row of one of the sections set aside for the dress rehearsal.  We could see Lisa and Deborah waving at us from a lower row where they had saved us some seats; however we told them we were sitting in the higher row so Judith would not have to walk down any steps.  Once again Judith told Michael and me we could go ahead and sit in the lower row and she would be fine; however both of us said we were fine with sitting in the upper row with her.  A nearby usher started a conversation with Judith, and I have to say, most of the arena personnel I personally ran into were very nice people.

In an attempt to make Judith more comfortable Michael and she switched places so she could try and prop her leg up on his leg.  It was not as comfortable as Judith hoped it would be, so the two of them switched back; putting Judith on the aisle, Michael to her right, and me to Michael's right.  We looked around the arena before the rehearsal began and spotted Johnny's agent Tara Modlin as well as his mother Patti Weir in a section to the right of where the audience was sitting.  Tara was in and out of the seats several times, and we could see she was talking on her cell phone frequently throughout the afternoon. The woman is always working! 

Before the dress rehearsal began David Wilson, the show's Artistic Director and Choreographer, came out on to the ice surface and explained what would be happening during the dress rehearsal.  There would be a question and answer session with Michelle Kwan and Yu Na Kim, then the skaters would run through the opening number twice, then they would skate their individual numbers, and then the second half of the show would begin.  There would also be two run throughs of the closing number, and most of the skaters would be marking jumps, places and certain moves in their numbers and not performing all of the actual moves as they would in the show performances later that evening.  All performances would be in full costume the same as the show that evening.  The cameras filming the show for a broadcast on NBC October 10th, as well as the cameras filming the show for a live stream to Korea that evening were also in place for the rehearsal, marking their shots, but not actually filming at this point.

We knew there was to be a rinkside Question and Answer session as part of the dress rehearsal; however I, at least, was not aware it would only involve YuNa Kim and Michelle Kwan until it actually started.  Some of us were hoping for the opportunity to ask Johnny Weir or one of the other skaters a question; but this show was primarily about YuNa Kim and Michelle Kwan, and there certainly were plenty of questions we could ask those two ladies!
David introduced Michelle Kwan and YuNa Kim and indicated there were people in the aisles with microphones who would come over to audience members who had questions they wanted to ask the two skaters.  Several questions were asked, including one woman who asked two questions of YuNa Kim, one of which was why did she leave her coach Brian Orser.  She gracefully answered the woman's other question while not answering the question about Brian Orser.  When the question was asked I can't say the audience booed, but it was not a question the audience seemed comfortable with as a group.  I remember turning to Michael and Judith and saying I did not feel it was an appropriate question for the woman in the audience to have asked, and they both agreed with me.  Deborah was able to ask a question regarding whether the show would go on tour to other large cities; but she pretty much had to stand up on her chair and wave at the show representatives to get their attention!  I honestly do not remember what the answer was; but I believe it might have been something like 'I hope so'.

The dress rehearsal began with a group number to 'Get the Party Started' by Pink.  We were first treated to a video on a large screen at the far end of the rink with YuNa Kim and Michelle Kwan talking about their skating inspirations and then the number began.  All the cast members except for Michelle and YuNa came out in pastel colored pants and white shirts with rainbow streaks on them and then the two ladies skated out.  After performing a few group moves in unison the two dance teams skated across the ice together, followed by the two pairs, then the three male skaters, and then the three ladies.  The group finished with a group pose in the middle of the ice.  Then the announcement was made the opening number would be run again.  Once the number was run for a second time each of the skaters was introduced individually and skated out on to the ice.   

Immediately after the introductory number Ashley Wagner skated out on the ice for her first individual number to 'Ain't No Other Man' by Christina Aguilera.  I did not record her rehearsal number, and I honestly do not remember much information about it, and I do apologize for that!  She was followed by German pairs team and 2010 Olympic Bronze Medalists Aliona Savchenko and Robin Szolkowy skating to 'Barbie Girl' by Aqua. They did not perform any of their difficult moves; they just marked where they would occur later that evening. 

When Johnny Weir had skated in the opening number he had already been wearing the makeup he uses for his first number, and when he came out right after the German pair we understood why.  It takes time to apply makeup properly, and his first number was ten minutes tops after the opening number ended; therefore it made sense for him to already have the makeup on.  The music for his first number is 'A Comme Amour' by Richard Clayderman, but it is known as 'Heartbroken' to his fans due to his choreographing it as a response to what happened to him at the Vancouver Olympics.  Although he performed the beautiful balletic turns, his final scratch spin and the ending fetal position down on the ice, Johnny only marked the position of his jumps, other spins and his trademark slide across the ice.  (We found out later that evening that he had injured his hip during an earlier practice session which made his performances more difficult for him not to mention painful.)  I had never seen Johnny Weir skate live before this show, and even though it was only the dress rehearsal and he did not perform all of his moves, I still was greatly moved by this program.

Johnny was followed on the ice by his good friends Tanith Belbin and Ben Agosto skating a fun number to 'If It Kills Me' by Jason Mraz.  I put my video camera down and later turned it off for a while during this number because there were two ushers nearby and I thought they were watching me and I did not want to risk having my camera confiscated.  At one point Deborah came by where we were sitting and was standing next to Judith dancing along as Gary waited for her so they could go back to their seats.  It was so much fun! 

Tanith and Ben were followed by Patrick Chan, who skated to  'Take Five' by Paul Desmond.  He was followed by 2010 Olympic Ice Dance Champions Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir who skated to 'Schenkst Du Beim Tango Min Dein Herz' by Dajos Bela & Nights and Days by Waldemar Kazanecki.  They were followed by the wonderful 2010 Olympic Champion Chinese pair Shen Xue and Zhao Hongbo who skated to 'Who Wants To Live Forever' by Queen.  They were one of the few skaters that actually performed some of their moves and did not just mark the places for them.  They are a beautiful pair, wonderfully in sync and they seldom make a mistake. 

Immediately following Shen and Zhao came 2010 Ladies Olympic Champion YuNa Kim.  She skated to 'Méditation' from Thaïs by Jules Massenet.  This is a beautiful piece of music that I've seen skaters use a number of times, and YuNa Kim makes very good use of it.  I think I tweeted from the arena about a beautiful lay back spin she had done in this number.  She is not perfect, but she is a lovely skater, there's no doubt about it.

She was followed by two-time Olympic Medalist Michelle Kwan who skated to 'No One' by Alicia Keys.  I am a fan of Michelle's, but I honestly do not remember a lot about her skates from the rehearsal.  Michelle was followed by 2006 Olympic Champion Stephane Lambiel, who skated to 'Let the Good Times Roll' by Ray Charles.  As seems to be the case with most of the Swiss born skaters, Lambiel's spins are wonderful, and the dress rehearsal was no exception.  As he finished his number Ashley, Aliona, Tanith, Tessa, and Shen Xue came out on to the ice and skated briefly with Stephane.  The girls pulled his jacket off and threw it on to the ice, and then Stephane skated off and YuNa Kim and Michelle skated out.  The ladies skated together briefly to 'She's So Lovely' by Scouting For Girls; and then YuNa and Michelle spoke to the audience before skating a lovely number to 'Hero' by Mariah Carey.

The duet by YuNa Kim and Michelle Kwan ended the first half of the dress rehearsal, and the announcer indicated there would be a twenty minute intermission during which the Zamboni would resurface the ice.  A lot of people started to stand up and stretch; however the announcer then indicated there would not be a twenty minute intermission during the rehearsal, only during the show itself that evening.  There was a short break for a few minutes and then the second half of the dress rehearsal began. 

The second half of the dress rehearsal began with the number Skaters vs BBoys.  Five of the male skaters (Johnny Weir, Stephane Lambiel, Patrick Chan, Robin Szolkowy and Ben Agosto*) came out on to the ice and did a fun 'battle' with a group of five male hip hop dancers.  One of the skaters would perform a move, then one of the 'BBoy's, another of the skaters and so on.  One of the hip hop dancers came out on to the ice and did a break dancing spin that drew a lot of applause from the audience.  Stephane did a wonderful set of spins for his 'challenge', and Johnny performed his trademark knee slide followed by a series of hip swiveling knee spins.  The fun battle ended with the two groups slapping hands and giving each other high fives. 

Immediately following the battle were Tanith Belbin and Ben Agosto skating to 'Use Somebody' by Kings of Leon.  I really like this number a lot, but I am a fan of theirs anyway!  Following Tanith and Ben was Ashley Wagner's second number 'Speechless' by Lady Gaga.  I remember us looking at the program and commenting there was another Lady Gaga number in the show besides Johnny's.  Following Ashley was Patrick Chan skating to 'Viva la Vida' by Coldplay and then Aliona Savchenko and Robin Szolkowy skating to 'Nella Fantasia' by Garðar Thór Cortes.  I enjoyed their second number a lot more than I enjoyed their first number.  They are definitely fun to watch!

One of the numbers I was looking forward to was the one following Aliona and Robin; Stephane Lambiel skating to 'William Tell Overture' by Gioachino Rossini.  It's always great to see his wonderful spins and his beautiful smile out on the ice!  After Stephane came Shen Xue and Zhao Hongbo skating their beautiful 'Turandot' program by Giacomo Puccini.  This is a beautiful and spectacular number finishing with a bit of 'Nessun Dorma'.  I leaned over to Michael and Judith and said I couldn't help myself, but no matter who skated to that aria, and no matter how well they did it, I could not watch it without thinking of Brian Boitano skating to it. 

Right after the Chinese pair came Johnny Weir skating his second number to 'Poker Face' by Lady GaGa.  We saw right away he was wearing his newer costume for this number as opposed to the one he had worn when he first began skating this number.  The announcer introduced him this way; 'He's a fashion designer, author, and has his own television show.  He is an original in every sense of the word.  Ladies and gentleman, Johnny Weir!'  Johnny only marked most of the moves including the knee slide and jumps except for his final spin.  However Judith and Michael realized he would be a mere couple of feet in front of them while he played to the audience during the show when they were in their regular seats, so they were both quite excited about that.  When Johnny skated around our end of the rink most of us made sure we waved our signs and called out his name, again so he would know we were there for him.  At one point Michael, Judith and I were laughing at several of our friends in the lower rows and how they were reacting.  What fun!  We could see exactly what they were doing because we were above and behind them, but they could not see us without turning around to look!
Right after Johnny, Michelle Kwan came out again to skate her number 'Winter Song' by Sara Bareilles with Ingrid Michaelson.  Following Michelle were Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir skating a number to a medley of three songs: 'Hip Hip Chindchin' by Club des Belugas,
'Temptation' by Diana Krall and 'Mujer Latina' by Thalia.  They are definitely a beautiful dance team, and there is no doubt they deserved a medal in Vancouver.  YuNa Kim followed the Canadian gold medalists skating to 'Bulletproof' by La Roux.  She was introduced as YuNa Kim 'disco girl'!

YuNa Kim's number was the last of the individual skater's numbers.  After her skate a 'special guest' was introduced to the audience.  A young Korean female singer named 윤하 (Younha) came out to sing 'Just Can't Get Enough', originally sung by Depeche Mode.  No skaters were on the ice while she sang this number.  She spoke briefly telling us she was nervous, but she was actually quite good.  Once she finished this number the finale began.  윤하 Younha sang 'Dream On' by Aerosmith as the skaters were introduced and came out for a group number.  When 'Dream On' was finished the finale with an encore was run again.  The encore was performed to 'Tik Tok' by Ke$ha.  
Once the show was over Judith, Michael and I made our way out into the hall where we waited for the rest of our group.  Judith again spoke to Staples Center personnel about her leg, which was still hurting, and they arranged for an employee to bring a wheelchair.  We proceeded slowly down the wheelchair ramp and out the front door.  The employee wheeled Judith all the way out to the curb where she got out of the chair and thanked him.  After that we headed back for the hotel talking about the rehearsal and the show later that evening. 

To be continued...

* I was never positive Ben was the fifth male skater, but I am assuming he was.  If I find out differently I will change and update my Blog!

All That Skate Odyssey, Part One

All That Skate Odyssey Picture and Video Links

My Videos From Oct 2, 2010 Rehearsal  (You may be able to hear me talking to my friends Michael and Judith during several of these videos.)

My Videos From Oct 2, 2010 ATS L.A. Show
All of the skaters in the show had banners hanging on columns outside the arenas.  This was Johnny's banner.