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Changes! Starring Johnny Weir

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Well, little Johnny Weir is growing up and branching out. This is old news but I felt like I should post in case you haven't seen, because it is potentially a big deal. Icenetwork reported that Johnny Weir will be having Canadian David Wilson choreograph his programs this season. The same David Wilson who has choreographed Yu-na Kim, as well as former world champ Jeffrey Buttle, both of whom are great at wringing points out of the scoring system. Wilson choreographs various others as well. This is big for many reasons, not the least of which being that Weir used to insist he would only work with Russian choreographers. Here is what Weir had to say in response to that:

Weir: When you hear something consistently, you need to buckle down. I've taken flack for only using Russian [choreography]. Previously, Russians were not necessarily choreographing for the system, because they were already the best -- and why change?

This was particularly true of Tatiana Tarasova and others from the Soviet-era generation. They were already the best; they were already successful. But, when you're an athlete, you want to win. You have to play the game to some extent. At the end of the day, I'm still headstrong. I still have my own ideas, but I'm tapering that a little bit.

Kind of calls out Tarasova there! But I appreciate that he is taking advice and realizing that he has to "play the game." I also think maybe it will make for more exciting programs for him...instead of more of the same. For example, Weir said someone called him regarding his ideas and pointed out that world champ Evan Lysacek always has a huge footwork sequence at the end of his programs. "Now I didn't want to hear that, but telling me to look at how someone else did things brought it home to me that yes, at the end of his music, he goes huge, and maybe there's something to that. That last footwork sequence gets people clapping." Good for Weir to try to make a change.

Wilson is a good choreographer and I have no doubt that he'll take Weir's style and strength into consideration. But I think it was good that Weir could get out of his box that he had pigeonholed himself into. Guess we'll know during Grand Prix season how it worked out!