Articles, Articles by Barry Mittan

German Dancers Make Top Ten at Junior Worlds

Carolina and Daniel Hermann

Siblings Carolina and Daniel Hermann, 19 and 20, from Wuppertal, Germany, skated well in their first World Junior Figure Skating Championships, placing tenth at the event in Oberstdorf, Germany in February 2007. “We just wanted to come to Junior Worlds and skate our best,” Daniel said. “Next year, we will go to seniors. We hope to skate as long as we have fun and enjoy it.” “We’ll continue as long as we’re progressing forward,” Carolina added. “We’ll stop when it’s no longer fun.”

The couple won the German Nationals in junior dance in 2007 after winning the silver medal in both 2005 and 2006, losing in 2006 by only 0.17 points. They were the novice dance champions in 2003. Internationally, they won the Pavel Roman Memorial in 2005 in junior dance and finished 8th in the ISU Junior Grand Prix in Taipei City in 2006.

They began skating when they were five and six. “We come from a small village where people go to skate on frozen ponds,” Daniel said. “All our friends go to skate on the ponds to skate and drink tea to celebrate birthdays and other things. I asked my mother to take us to the ice rink for lessons so we could skate.” They started dancing together in 1998, when they were ten and eleven. “We had tried it for fun a few times, but when we switched clubs to Dortmund, one of the coaches asked us to train in dance,” Carolina said.

Rostislav Sinitsyn and Vitali Schulz coach the couple. They have trained in Dortmund since the winter of 1998, working two or three hours a day, six days a week on ice and an hour off ice. In the summer, they also train in Finland, Prague and Oberstdorf.

Sinitsyn and Elena Maslennikova choreograph the couple’s dances. For the 2006-07 season, they skated to “Pariser Tango” by Mirielle Mathieu for their original dance. “It’s German music,” Daniel said. “We wanted something that was different and special.” Their free dance was to theme music from three James Bond movie soundtracks – “Diamonds are Forever”, “The Man with the Golden Gun”, and “Live and Let Die”. “Daniel wanted to skate to Madonna, but I found the Bond music on the Internet,” Carolina said. “We always want to do something different. We try to think of what will make a better show.” For the comin season, they will skate to Greek music for their free dance.

For exhibitions, the Hermanns used “Lady Marmelade” and “Tango de Roxanne” from the Moulin Rouge soundtrack last season. They used the music for their free dance the previous year. “Movie music is easy to interpret,” Carolina added. Off ice, they listen to anything but German rap music. “It’s not my kind of music,” Daniel noted.

Daniel is in his first semester of studies at the university, studying economics in a business and technical school after receiving a scholarship. He plans to spend a semester abroad next year studying in either Canada or the United States if he can find a university where he can still skate. Carolina has one more year of high school and plans to go to university but hasn’t decided on a career.

Off ice, Carolina enjoys reading, dancing and being with friends. Daniel likes hanging out with friends, going to the movies and the disco, and reading. “We live alone so we also have to cook for ourselves,” Daniel added, “but we usually don’t eat each other’s cooking.”

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