Samson Makes Canadian Senior International Team

Articles, Articles by Barry Mittan

Myriane Samson

Quebec’s Myriane Samson, who is from Greenfield Park, made the Canadian international team for 2007-08 by finishing fifth at the 2007 Canadian Nationals in Halifax, Nova Scotia. “My goal for the season was to make the national team and go to Junior Worlds,” Samson noted. “I was very unhappy when I won the junior title in 2004 and wasn’t sent to Junior Worlds.” She had hoped to make the top ten but finished 18th at Junior Worlds. “It was a little harder doing juniors than seniors,” Samson said, “because you had to do the same number of jumps in less time.”

Samson first appeared at the national level in pre-novice ladies in 2003, when she won the silver medal. She then jumped past the novice level and won junior ladies the following season. In 2005, she went to seniors, placing ninth in 2005 and fifth in 2007. Internationally, she won silver medals at the 2003 Croatia Cup in juniors and at the Copenhagen Trophy in both novice (2003) and juniors (2004). Last season, she finished fourth at both her Junior Grand Prix events in Budapest, Hungary and Miercurea Ciuc, Romania. So far for the 2007/2008 season, she has been assigned to the Junior Grand Prix in Miercurea Ciuc, Romania.

Samson has been skating since she was five when her mother took her to the rink to skate. But she didn’t start competing until she was ten. Before that she had tried gymnastics for two days but admitted that she was scared of heights. Samson’s first successful trip jump was the salchow, which she first landed when she was 14. She got all her triples that year, including her first triple flip and lutz on the same day.

Samson has worked with Maryse Gauthier since she was 12. Gauthier and Cathia Guiseppe coach the 18-year-old, who practices on ice for 2-3 hours a day, six days a week at St. Jean Figure Skating Club. “Myriane has trained really hard since last year,” Gauthier said. “She understands that hard work pays. Our goal for next season is to get the triple-triples into the program. Her toe loop is not really good but we don’t need it for now. I think the problem with it is in her head, but there’s no need to go backwards when the lutz is her favorite jump.”

Last season, Samson used a triple lutz/double loop combination in the short. In her long, she tried triple lutz/triple loop, triple loop/double loop/double loop, and a double axel/double axel sequence but no triple toe loop. She has been practicing three other triple-triple combinations: salchow-loop, lutz-loop, and flip-loop. If the jumps are solid, she plans to upgrade her technical difficulty next season.

She also does off ice training for an hour or two a day, five days a week. In the winter, that includes flexibility and gym training, while in the summer, her off ice work includes ballet, dance and Pilates. She also swims and rollerblades in the summer. “I used to like to run,” she said, “but I hurt my right knee, my landing leg, three years ago and was off the ice for three or four months. It still hurts a little now.”

Jean-Pierre Boyer choreographed Samson’s programs for 2006-07, with assistance from Giuseppe. She used “Violin Fantasy” from Puccini’s “Turandot” performed by Vanessa Mae for her short and “Tango de los Exilados” by Walter Taeib and “Querer”, also performed by Vanessa Mae, for her long. The long program was new for the season, but the short used the same music as in 2005-06. Next year, she will probably have new music for both programs.

“I always find the music myself,” she said. “I feel the music better and I’m sure I’ll like it. The short program was the same as the Chinese pair had in the 2002 Olympics. I heard it and I liked it. The long program music I chose in cooperation with my choreographer. It was supposed to be used for pairs. I prefer my music to be powerful, not too smooth, and not too artistic.

She enjoys listening to music, hanging out with friends, shopping and going to scary movies in her free time. She also searches for music and chats on her computer. Samson collects flags of each country in which she has competed.

Samson has finished high school and a year of CEGEP in human sciences, but plans to wait until she finishes skating before trying university studies.

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