Translation of recent interview with Victoria Sinitsina and Nikita Katsalapov, just after the closed part of test skates.
Guys, what difficulties have you faced preparing for the new season?
Nikita: ‘Preparation’ started with surgery on my shoulder two days after the World Championships in Boston. The surgery was done in America. Predicted 6-7 months of recovery, perhaps even more, because doctors discovered a problem not only in the joint, the muscle was also ripped off. All this remind me of Max Trankov’s injury, and I knew that he had a long time recovering. But the surgery was necessary, we decided to do it at once, and not to think about it later.
Surgery was successful. I even was able to do lifts ahead of time that doctors predicted. However, I’m still under supervision of experts. I was recommended to undergo a rehabilitation, and, looking ahead, I will say that I’m going to recover in Moscow.
All this time, Victoria trained alone?
Victoria: Yes, I trained alone. Nikita cut music, sitting behind the board in the headphones. He did it with one hand, because after surgery the shoulder hurted. But we planned programs, drawings, invented new elements, and as far as possible, I tried to show something on ice.
Nikita, when you went out on the ice?
Nikita: At first, the main problem for me was to do shoelaces. And all I could do is just to skate around, to maintain legs and knees in good shape. Work on the ice began two months after surgery. And the doctors warned that I can’t fall, because it can lead to a relapse. The work in a full force began only a month ago, however, we did two new programs that will show at the test skates. During the time I didn’t skate, we and our coaches did a very great job. Gained information, were involved in programs, talked about details. I was present at every training session. So we could see the contours of the new programs.
What music did you choose for new programs?
Nikita: Marina Zueva offered music for the first part of the short dance – Blues by Duke Ellington. Already from the first draft it was obvious that this styles suits us a lot. Marina also said about it. And we liked the blues a lot. Then began to search swing for the second part. I searched through the entire Internet and found the song of Lady Gaga and Tony Bennett «If It Is not Got That Swing». Since during this time I learned to cut and compose music, we tried various options and eventually put a small piece from the album of this singers into the first part of our dance. Turned out a nice composition.
And what about free dance?
Victoria: The free dance is tango. We’ve been going to this this style for a long time, because we wanted to do tango last year. I love this style. It seemed to us that this season we’re ready to try something new. We reviewed a lot of video, chose dancing moves, danced ourselves. In fact we spent the whole summer on this preparatory work. And when began to choreograph it was much easier, because we knew what to do, how we are going to move to show a real tango.
Nikita: And the music – it is very rare compositions by Astor Piazzolla.
Did you plans change due to the fact that Nikita has to be under constant medical supervision?
Nikita: After test skates we’ll stay to train in Moscow. We will prepare at home till the Russian Nationals, so I can take a full course of rehabilitation on the shoulder. This decision was taken on September 5, together with Russian Figure Skating Federation.
Viktoria: We’re going to prepare in Moscow with Oleg Volkov under the supervision of our coach Marina Zueva and her assistants. We’re constantly in touch with Marina. We communicate by Skype. We send her video of our training, she makes remarks, says what we need to correct.
Nikita: We know Oleg Volkov for a long time. I trained with him when I wasn skating in a group of Alexander Zhulin. Oleg is a good technician. I think that three of us will find a common language for this period of time.
What has changed in your relationship with your partner? Pair skaters say that three years needed to become a pair.
Nikita: So it turns out. I understand Victoria, she understands me. We try to see positive in everything, to enjoy our work, what we do. In short, we will move forward.
Victoria: Always together, because we have a common goal towards which we are moving.