ENGLISH Torville & Dean


Torvill and Dean
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Medal record

Bolero - 1984 Olympics at Sarajevo

Competitor for

United Kingdom

Figure skating Olympic Games Gold Bronze 1984 Sarajevo 1994 Lillehammer Ice dancing Ice dancing

World Figure Skating Championships Gold Gold Gold Gold 1981 Hartford 1982 Copenhagen 1983 Helsinki 1984 Ottawa Ice dancing Ice dancing Ice dancing Ice dancing

Torvill and Dean (Jayne Torvill and Christopher Dean) are British ice dancers and British, European, Olympic and World champions. At the 1984 Winter Olympics the pair became the highest scoring figure skaters of all time (for a single programme) receiving 12 perfect 6.0s, including artistic impression scores of 6.0 from every judge.[1] The pair turned professional following the 1984 Olympics, regaining amateur status briefly ten years later in 1994 to compete in the Olympics once again. The pair retired from competitive skating for good in 1999, but continue to work professionally, both separately and as a pair.

Both are from Nottingham, England, where the local National Ice Centre is accessed through a public area known as Bolero Square, in honour of the pair's Olympic achievements. There is also a housing estate in the Wollaton area of the city named 'Torvill Drive', with many of the surrounding roads named after coaches and dances associated with the pair.


• • •

1 Careers o 1.1 Partnership and the Olympics o 1.2 Going professional o 1.3 Return to the Olympics o 1.4 Life after the Olympics 2 Style and approach o 2.1 Use of narrative and thematic music o 2.2 Complying with Olympic rules o 2.3 The Professional Years 1984 – 1998 / 2006 – 3 Trivia 4 Notes 5 External links

[edit] Careers
[edit] Partnership and the Olympics
Around 1975, Jayne Torvill was a former British Junior Pairs champion, and Christopher Dean and his partner had won a British Junior Ice Dance competition. Nottingham coach Janet Sawbridge put them together, and shortly afterwards, they started their ice dancing history. They took their first trophy in 1976. They changed coaches to Betty Callaway in 1978. After a 5th place finish at their first Olympics, in Lake Placid in 1980, and 4th place in Worlds that year, they never took lower than first place in any competition they entered, except in 1994. Singer-actor Michael Crawford was the fourth member of the team, along with their trainer. He became a mentor to them around 1981, and went on to help them create their 1983 and 1984 Olympic routines, and "taught them how to act". Crawford said of them, "I found them to be delightful young people, the kind you want to help if you can." (The Times November 1982). He was present with their trainer at the ringside, when the team won their perfect Olympics score with their Boléro routine. (Source: Torvill and Dean's 1996 autobiography partially cited at [1]) (For further information and biographies, see the individual articles on Jayne Torvill and Christopher Dean)

[edit] Going professional

Although Torvill and Dean had been able to leave their jobs as an insurance clerk and policeman, respectively, thanks to grants from the city of Nottingham, they were not allowed to earn any money from skating as long as they wished to remain eligible for the Olympics. Turning professional in 1984, they took advantage not only of the financial but of the artistic possibilities of their new status. They worked with Australian dance choreographer Graeme Murphy at first, and they were able to create not only routines for themselves but entire ice shows with a thematic coherence, which toured Australia, the U.S., and Europe. Their projects included a filmed fairy tale "Fire and Ice." In general, Dean would imagine the sequence he wanted to perform, and Torvill would work with him to refine it technically. They choreographed, as a team, for other ice dancers and skaters, particularly the Canadian brother–sister team Isabelle and Paul Duchesnay, who skated for France at the Albertville Olympics in 1992, taking the silver medal with their West Side Story routine.

[edit] Return to the Olympics
After ten years as professionals, Torvill and Dean decided to return to the amateur arena for the 1994 Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway (along with other great skaters of the 1980s, such as Brian Boitano and Katarina Witt, thanks to a change in eligibility rules). Their free dance was designed to re-establish some of the ideas about ice dance which they themselves had been instrumental in dismantling; "Let's Face The Music and Dance" had no swooning lovers, theatrical accessories, or violent ideological message; just fast, delightful dance in the best Astaire and Rogers tradition. The routine did have one move, an assisted lift, which pushed the envelope of the rules. According to their autobiography, Facing the Music, the lift was technically legal because the rule prohibited lifts "above the shoulders," and the lift they used was NOT above the shoulders. The judges placed Torvill and Dean at third place, giving the second to perennial silver medalists Usova and Zhulin, and the gold medal to Grishuk and Platov, who continued to win gold through the next four years.

[edit] Life after the Olympics
After the disappointing finish at Lillehammer, Torvill and Dean "picked themselves up and dusted themselves off" and continued with their planned and very successful "Face the Music" tour, to be followed by numerous other projects: Dean choreographed a suite of dances to the songs of Paul Simon for the English National Ballet, professional competitions, touring with Stars on Ice, and collaborating with cellist Yo-Yo Ma and director Patricia Rozema on the video Inspired by Bach: Six Gestures. In late 1998, they produced an ice show at Wembley Stadium in London, "Ice Adventures," which included a "flying" ice ballet and other wonders. In the meantime, they were still choreographing, notably for the dynamic French Ice Dance team, Anissina and Peizerat, who won first place in the World Championships in 2000. In 1999, the pair officially retired, each continuing to coach and choreograph separately. On 14 January 2006, they acted as coaches, choreographers and performers in ITV's Dancing on Ice. They returned for a second series in January 2007. They have been also involved (July-August 2006) in the Australian version of the programme titled Torvill and Dean's Dancing on Ice.

After the 2007 series of Dancing on Ice in the UK Torvill and Dean will take the show on the road for a British tour.

[edit] Style and approach
[edit] Use of narrative and thematic music
After winning the 1981 World Championships (which brought the distinction of MBEs), and with three more years before the Olympics, they began to plan routines which used a single piece of music and had some narrative or thematic element. At that time, Ice Dance "long" routines typically used several pieces of music, often with different rhythms to show off the command of different steps (thus their Free Dance in 1981 used "Fame", "Caravan", "Red Sails in the Sunset", and "Sing, Sing, Sing"); the short programme used only one piece of music, but the entire routine had to be performed three times in sequence, exactly the same way. In 1982, they presented a long programme to excerpts from the musical Mack and Mabel, which evoked the emotions of a sweet but stormy romance; in 1983, they enacted a visit to the circus with music from Barnum, with help from the stage show's star, Michael Crawford; in 1984, at the Olympics, they stunned the world with Boléro which brought them the honor of receiving the world's first perfect score, and also with their dramatic Paso Doble short routine, in which Torvill was the bullfighter's cape. They had learned to choose and edit music carefully and design routines that were appealing both technically and imaginatively, and their completeness of presentation included thematically appropriate costumes.

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