Commonly Asked Figure Skating Questions  -

How important to a judge's evaluation are the selection of music and the choreography of the program?

The choice of music occurs as a result of the skater, choreographer, and coach assessing the skater’s technical and artistic abilities and how the music can be incorporated into the “total package” presented to the judges for evaluation.

The choice of music, with the assistance of a skilled choreographer, can highlight the strengths and mask the weakness in the skater’s presentation and technical abilities, but rarely can the choice of music and choreographer correct core technical problems or the skater’s inability to feel and express the music as a part of their on ice personality.

The choice of music that is not created with musical highlights limits the choreographer whose job it is to design a program that transition smoothly and connect the individual required program elements.

The music chosen by many skaters provides only a background to their skating and will receive lower marks from judges compared to programs in which music is artfully incorporated into the skater’s performance.

The coach may push for including more difficult technical elements that conflict with the role of the choreographer who strives for the continuity of form and style throughout the program, yet must deal with inconsistently performed and exited jumps and spins.

Submitted by Claude Sweet
USFS Gold MITF, Free Skating, Pair, and International Dance test judge; Intermediate Figure judge.

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