IDC is highlighting some of the new partnerships that are debuting in the 2018-19 competitive season. The following Q & A with Irina Galiyanova & Grayson Lochhead of Canada are featured this month.
IDC: Tell us about your individual skating journeys.
IG: I started skating at the age of 4 in Moscow, Russia. When I moved to Canada, I began to train with Carol Lane and my uncle, Juris Razgulajevs, and I have been with them ever since. I used to do free skate and dance when I was little and I ended up deciding that Ice dance was the discipline for me and started full time ice dance with my ex-partner, Tommy Tang. I now currently skate with Grayson after Tommy retired for school.
GL: I began figure skating at the age of 7, but knew how to skate from a very young age because of playing hockey. My mother, who is a skating coach, convinced me to start skating to help with my hockey skills, but I eventually moved to only participating in skating. Moving from my hometown of Sweaburg, Ontario to Waterloo, Ontario was my first big step in skating. After four successful years in Waterloo, my ex-partner and I decided to move to Scarborough, Ontario, which is where I train with Irina today.
IDC: Tell us about how your partnership started.
IG: Grayson and I both trained together for a year, and since our partners both left skating, we saw that we were a good match when skating around together while looking for partners. We realized that we would be good for each other.
GL: Like Irina said, we were both looking for partners and realized that we would be great partners for each other.
IDC: What do you like most about skating with your partner?
IG: Grayson is easy to talk too and we are able to have fun while working hard together.
GL: Irina is always hard working, and pushing me as far as I can go. She is very determined. We can always have a good laugh while training, which is very inportant to me.
IDC: If you could have a lesson from any ice dancer past/present, who would it be?
IG: I know we train together, but Paul and Piper are really innovative and original and they have a lot of cool and interesting things to bring to the table. Having a lesson with them would be great since they always have creative ideas.
GL: I would definetly love a lesson with Shae-Lynn Bourne and Victor Kraatz. I loved the way they would incorporate low hydroblade moves into their programs and always brought other exciting moves to impress the audience.
IDC: Can you give us some background on your programs this season?
Our short program will be skated to very original music. We struggled finding a perfect fit for the tempo for the pattern dance that won’t be used a lot by other teams, and our coach Carol found it for us and made it work. It will be interesting to hear everyone’s reaction to it. As for our free, we hope it will bring a lot of emotions to everyone watching. I had this piece of music in mind as an idea and once Grayson heard it, we both knew it was something we wanted to do. Our coaches loved the idea and we created an emotional piece to it.