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2015 JUNIOR WORLDS: A Look Back at Ice Dance

Tallinn, Estonia, a picturesque city overlooking the Sea of Finland, rolled out its red carpet for the 2015 World Junior Championships March 2-8. The competitions were held at the new and contemporary Tondiraba Ice Arena.


(1) Anna Yanovskaya+Sergey Mozgov (RUS) danced the Samba, Rhumba, Samba into 1st place with Level4 twizzles and an exceptional straight-line lift. The two Silver Samba patterns and footwork earned Level3.

“We were very satisfied with today’s skate as it was the final short dance in the season. The performance was emotional and technical,” noted Yanovskaya.

(2) Mackenzie Bent+Garrett MacKeen (CAN) placed second with the Rhumba and Samba rhythms and received the highest technical mark of the Short Dances.

The team earned Level4 for both Silver Samba patterns.

“The skate – we couldn’t have asked for much more,” Bent commented. “For us, this season was just a bunch of different stepping stones, which included our first JGPF and our senior nationals.”

(3) Lorraine McNamara+Quinn Carpenter (USA) earned a personal best score of 59.10 with an African themed Samba and Rhumba. Their twizzles and lift received Level4, while both Silver Samba patterns were Level3.

“It was solid. We were looking to improve on how we did earlier this season, and I think we did that,” commented McNamara.

Yankovskaya+Mozgov continued the Short Dance Latin theme with an Argentine Tango medley that displayed a sultry flirting connection between partners.

“For our free dance we chose Argentine Tango, and it turned out to be a Golden Tango for us. Our program is about a man and woman meeting in a restaurant. It’s about passion, emotion, and love,” explained Yankovskaya. We developed it over the whole season, and I think at this competition, we were able to bring it across the best.”

The JGPF gold medalists set a new personal best of 93.70 with Level4 lifts and spin plus Level3 step sequence and twizzles.

“Of course, there were some minor mistakes, but we are satisfied. In this season, we achieved everything in juniors that we could have achieved,” commented Yankovskaya. “We will move to seniors now.”

Mozgov added, “[In seniors], we want to prepare and fix the mistakes we did and add choreography and emotions – relationship to our skating,”

McNamara+Carpenter were strongly moved to interpret the often over-used Andrew Lloyd Webber classic, Phantom of the Opera.

“We both felt so much passion and connection with this music. We knew people had skated to it, but we really wanted to tell a very deep, intimate story about Christine and the Phantom. We had an amazing time feeling this program,” explained Carpenter.

“It was really easy for us to portray the characters and live the program because of the connection we have with the music. It’s going to be hard to say goodbye [to the program] added McNamara.

The US Junior Champions were third in the free dance, but claimed the silver medal over the Ukrainians by a slim margin.

Alexandra Nazarova+Maxim Nitikin (UKR) blended the unique musical style of French composer, Hugues Le Bars, and the artistic beauty of Johann Sebastian Bach to provide a background to accent their clever animation and innovative lifts. The unusual collaboration earned a free dance second place.

The team earned Level4 for the twizzles, lifts, and spin. They won bronze.

“We are satisfied with our performance; it was one of the best we’ve done,” smiled Nikitin. It is very nice that it was successful, especially the twizzles, because at the Junior Grand Prix here in Tallinn, I did a rather big mistake.

4. Rachel Parsons+Michael Parsons (USA) 5th in FD, 4th in SD.
5. Mackenzie Bent+Garrett McKeen (CAN) 8th in FD, 2nd in SD.
6. Madeline Edwards+Zhao Kai Pang (CAN) 6th in SD, 4th in FD

                                                              ICE CHIPS

  •  Bent+Mackeen skated the Paso Doble pattern at  Canadian senior Nationals and placed sixth.
  •  Nazarova+Nikitin represent the Ukraine, but train in Moscow with Alexander Zulin, 1993 World Ice Dance Champions.
  •  Yanovskaya+Mozgov have won 9/10 international competitions during the 2013/2014 and 2014/2015 season. They placed 2nd at the 2015 World Junior Championships. (They lost by .96 points.)
  •  In Tallinn, Igor Shpilband is coaching 3 teams from 3 different countries. Shpilband and Tatiana Gladkova represented the former USSR and won the1983 World Junior Ice Dance Championships.
  •  The following countries will send three (3) dance teams to the 2016 World Junior Championships:       Canada     Russia      USA
  •  The following countries will send two (2) dance teams to the 2016 World Junior Championships France     Hungary     Poland       Ukraine


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