In the third article of our New Team Series, we check in with Alisa Korneva & Kieran MacDonald, who are coached by Carleigh MacDonald and train at the Kitchener Waterloo Skating Club in Waterloo, Ontario. They recently finished second at the Skate Ontario Summer Series event in August.
Tell us about your individual skating journeys?
Alisa: I started skating at four years old in Moscow. I was a freeskate skater until I was 13 and then I started ice dance. I have moved to Canada to skate with Kieran, and represent Canada.
Kieran: I started skating when I was three years old. Both of my older siblings were skaters, and because of this, I wanted to skate too. I started doing ice dance when I was eight years old. I did both freeskate and ice dance until I was fourteen years old, and then I decided to focus on ice dance.
What drew you to ice dance?
Alisa: I was drawn to ice dance because I didn’t enjoy doing the harder jumps (double axel and triples). I always thought ice dance was very beautiful, and because of this, it was something I wanted to try.
Kieran: I was drawn to ice dance because of the fact that there were a lot of ice dance teams in my club, and I thought that it would be something I would enjoy.
What are your earliest skating memories?
Alisa: When I was little I skated with my dad on an outdoor rink in a park in Moscow. These are some of my earliest skating memories.
Kieran: Some of my earliest skating memories are from when I first started skating on CanSkate. When I was young, I was really excited to start skating as I liked watching my siblings skate, and I wanted to try it myself.
Tell us about how your partnership started (tryout, etc.)?
Our partnership started in January when Alisa traveled to Canada for our tryout. We did a one week tryout, and then decided that we wanted to form a partnership and skate together as the tryout had gone really well.
Can you give us some background on your programs this season (if available)?
Our programs this season were choreographed by Joel Dear. We really enjoyed the choreographic process, and we are looking forward to showing our programs in competitions this summer.
If you could have a lesson from any ice dancer past/present, who would it be?
Alisa: If I could have a lesson from any ice dancers, it would be Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir. I really like their skating, and I think it would be very interesting to learn from them.
Kieran: I have worked with Scott before, and really enjoyed my lessons with him, so I would agree with Alisa and say Tessa and Scott.
Tell us about your training challenges during the pandemic.
When we first started skating together, the rinks in Ontario were closed due to COVID. The first three weeks that we skated together, we were training on an outdoor rink.
What is it that you already like about your new partner?
Alisa: I like how easy going Kieran is. It is easy to spend time with Kieran because we already have a good relationship with one another.
Kieran: Alisa and I get along really well. I like how she has a really good sense of humor. Since we live together, we spend a lot of time together doing things we both enjoy.
What do you like most about skating with your partner?
Alisa: Kieran is very responsible, and I like how focused he is when we are training. He is very supportive, and always makes sure that I am comfortable and understand things. He makes it so training together is enjoyable every day.
Kieran: One thing that I like about skating with Alisa is how she approaches our day to day training. She always embraces challenges, and works very hard.
What are you looking most forward to this season?
We are excited to compete together this season, and to continue to develop as a team.