#1Apr 28th, 2011
Korean figure skating star Kim Yu-na said yesterday her new free skating program, dedicated to her Korean fans, will be “exhilarating” to watch at this week’s world championships in Russia.
At the 2011 World Figure Skating Championships in Moscow, Kim is set to perform her short program to music from the ballet “Giselle” on Friday and then her Saturday free skate to “Homage to Korea,” a compilation of traditional Korean music, including the well-known folk song “Arirang.”
Kim, who has not competed since last year’s world championships, unveiled her free skate for the first time in practice late Tuesday in Moscow. Through a pool report from Russia, Kim said the highlight of the program will be near the end.
“You will feel exhilarated watching the program,” Kim was quoted as saying. “When Arirang comes on and I perform my spiral, I will be able to convey those feelings.”
Figure skaters often have a full season to perform and polish their programs for the world championships, the final competition of a figure skating season. But Kim hasn’t skated her programs in a competitive setting and admitted she’d been nervous before the first practice.
“I got a little tense because of all the expectations,” Kim said. “I was a bit off during my practice but I am generally satisfied with it.”
When she announced her programs in November last year, Kim had said “Homage to Korea” would be her way to return the love from her fans. David Wilson, Kim’s choreographer, called the free skating program Kim’s “love letter” to her native country.
The 20-year-old, who won the Olympic gold medal in Vancouver last year and also a world title in 2009, is one of the most beloved athletes in South Korea.
Kim said she has incorporated some movements of traditional Korean dance into “Homage to Korea” and also applied some contemporary interpretations to better express a wide range of emotions.
“David Wilson and I watched a lot of traditional movements and practiced them repeatedly,” Kim said.
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