On this Q&A, we introduce you to Amanda City, an ice dancer who competes within the junior solo mixed dance occasions. She trains with ,at Ashburn Ice Home and is coached by IKatrina Shalin, Vitaliy Shalin, and Ruslan Goncharov.
Inform us about how your skating journey started. What drew you to the ice? Do you could have any particular reminiscences?
My skating journey started in 2015 when my mother and father signed me and my sister up for a study to skate summer time camp. I had no thought skate and had by no means actually tried it earlier than the camp. I keep in mind the primary time I stepped on the ice, it felt a lot totally different than how I anticipated it will be, however I liked it. After the week-long camp, I actually needed to proceed studying skate so my mother and father signed me up for study to skate courses and it just about took off from there.
When and why did you select to do solo dance?
I started my skating journey competing on a synchronized skating staff. On my third season of synchro, my coach urged that I attempt ice dance classes to assist with issues like my timing, posture, skating abilities, and many others. I ended up taking classes and I liked it! After just some weeks of classes my coach, Vitaliy Shalin, requested if I needed to attempt competing within the solo dance collection. He defined that I might compete within the preliminary patterns, and that if I scored excessive sufficient I might qualify for nationals. In fact I mentioned sure, and in 2019 I competed in preliminary patterns, and I ended up qualifying and competing at nationals in Provo, Utah. I’ve competed yearly since, and I’m now competing Junior Mixed. Ever since my first season, I’ve completely liked competing within the solo dance collection.
What do you want most about Solo Dance? What sort of music to you prefer to skate to the perfect? Why?
I like that solo dance provides dancers the chance to nonetheless compete with no companion. I like to compete and whereas I’m looking for a companion, I’m so grateful I’m nonetheless in a position to carry out and keep aggressive. In solo dance, the junior and senior ranges have a rhythm dance and a free dance, similar to the ice dance groups. This season the junior rhythm dance theme was tango together with your selection of favor from the choices they gave. I selected to skate to a flamenco together with the tango, and I actually have loved it! I prefer to skate to all kinds of music however I believe the flamenco and tango kinds this 12 months have been one in every of my favorites. After I hear my music I really feel I must skate with plenty of energy, I must be quick and fierce, and I actually take pleasure in that. I additionally actually like skating to up to date or lyrical items of music, I like to simply skate and really feel the music, it’s the most effective issues about skating.
Inform us about your coaching web site.
I’ve skated on the Ashburn Ice Home in Ashburn, Virginia because the first time I’ve ever stepped foot on the ice. This summer time, I’ve began coaching extra at SkateQuest in Reston, as we’ve dance solely ice time Monday by way of Thursday which has been tremendous useful because it will get fairly busy on summer time freestyle periods. My teaching staff consists of Katrina Shalin, Vitaliy Shalin, and Ruslan Goncharov. I can’t think about a greater staff of coaches, all of them contribute various things to my skating/applications and are simply so useful to me. They’re every extraordinarily devoted at what they do and spend a lot of their time perfecting my skating, and all of their different skaters as nicely. It is rather necessary to me to not solely have coaches who can educate nicely, however to have coaches who actually care about their college students and need the perfect for them. Now we have a reasonably large group of solo dancers, skaters from the decrease ranges to the upper ranges, however all of us help each other. This season we even have 5 junior dancers, together with myself. All of us are aggressive, after all, however we’re all mates and we cheer one another on. We’re all a staff and really supportive of one another, it’s an ideal group!
Who choreographed your applications. What do you want greatest about dancing to them?
Katrina Shalin and Ruslan Goncharov did my choreography this season. They’re very inventive and know precisely what every program wants. This 12 months I selected to skate to the “Avatar” film soundtrack for my free dance. Initially I selected a recent fashion of music, we choreographed rather less than half this system however then I made a decision it simply didn’t really feel proper. To be able to skate to music, it’s essential have a reference to it, which I didn’t really feel to that piece of music. I advised my coaches and we instantly started looking for new music. I used to be looking for one thing with extra of a storyline. I needed one thing distinctive and funky, one thing that may actually be attention-grabbing to observe. I heard the “Avatar” soundtrack and I actually favored the thought. I then advised my coach, Katrina, about this concept and she or he helped discover some extra songs and brainstorm new concepts. We obtained this program accomplished in a short time, simply in time for the 2023 Solo Dance Camp in Dallas, Texas. At solo dance camp I had the chance to work with Randi Sturdy who was additionally very useful in including issues to each of my applications.
Solo Dance will probably be a global self-discipline this season? Share your ideas about this alteration.
I’m so excited to listen to about Solo Dance changing into a global self-discipline! I believe this actually helps open the door for a lot of dancers who’re struggling to discover a companion, or simply need to compete in ice dance with no companion. Since my first 12 months of solo dance, again in 2019, I’ve seen it develop. I consider since it will likely be on the worldwide stage, extra consideration will probably be dropped at it, and extra folks will need to attempt it. I believe it’s additionally nice to not solely compete towards skaters out of your area or inside your nation, however to have the chance to compete towards skaters from different nations as nicely. I’m simply so completely happy to see that solo dance will probably be worldwide, and might’t await the alternatives that this may convey.
In skating, what are you most trying ahead to this season? What will probably be your largest problem(s)?
I’m most trying ahead to competing at my final couple of qualifying competitions, and hopefully the Nationwide Solo Dance last in Chicago, IL. I’m actually excited to compete in Lake Placid, New York. It’s a enjoyable competitors, and skating on the rink the Olympics happened is known as a nice expertise. I believe my largest problem will probably be nationals. I’ve been working tougher than I ever have in previous seasons and I actually do really feel it’s paying off. My purpose this season is to skate two skates that I’m happy with and earn a medal at nationals; I’d like to win. To this point I’ve earned a gold medal from all six of my competitions, and I’m actually happy with that. In the event you have been to inform me final season and even simply earlier than this season began, the place I’m at proper now, I’d not consider you. I’ve actually shocked myself thus far and I’m excited for what’s subsequent!
In the event you might have a lesson with any ice dancer previous/current, who wouldn’t it be? Why?
This can be a laborious choice as there are such a lot of wonderful ice dancers I look as much as. However, If I have been to select, I’d say both Maddison Hubbell and Zachary Donohue or Gabriella Papadakis and Guillaume Cizeron. Each groups have such distinctive kinds of skating that actually encourage me. I like their energy and easy kinds of skating.
What are your favourite off-ice actions?
This can be a query I get requested typically and I by no means know what to reply as a result of I prefer to be on the ice just about all day on a regular basis. It’s one thing I don’t get uninterested in, but when I needed to choose I’d say purchasing and touring. I journey loads for competitions and I’ve gone to essentially cool locations, a few of my favorites have been Provo, UT, Lake Placid, NY and Nashville, TN. All of them are actually fairly areas and I’ve actually loved visiting there.
Please share anything you desire to our readers to learn about you as a skater?
One thing I would like folks to see once they watch me skate is my ardour for skating. I don’t simply skate as a result of I’ve been doing it for some time or for another purpose. I skate as a result of I actually find it irresistible and luxuriate in coming to follow on daily basis. I believe that’s what actually could make a skater stand out.