Solo Q & A: Khloe Felton

Photos by Melanie Heaney

In this Solo Q&A, learn more about Khloe Felton, a U.S. ice dancer who competes in Junior Solo Combined. At the 2023 U.S. Solo Dance Championships, Felton finished fourth in Junior Solo Combined and won the gold medal in Gold-International Shadow Dance with partner Jordan Brenne. 

Tell us about how your skating journey began. What drew you to the ice? Do you have any special memories?
When I was 3 years old my mom put me in Learn to Skate as she was trying all different sports to see what I would like.  The club has an annual Holiday Ice Revue which is what really got me hooked.  I got my first dress/costume and that was all it took. I love performing. The lights, music, costumes and I was so excited every chance I got to perform. The rink feels like home.  I am comfortable on the ice and the figure skating community is my family.  There have been so many memorable moments that just solidify I am where I should be and skating is the right sport for me.

When and why did you choose to do solo dance? 
When I was 7 years old I started preliminary dance.  Solo dance is a large part of GKSA and the majority of our members are in solo dance.  I still competed freestyle as well until I really had to choose when I got to the higher levels.  I am planning to test my Senior Freestyle this summer so I have kept up with the other disciplines but Ice Dance is my passion.

What do you like most about Solo Dance? What kind of music to you like to skate to the best? Why?
Solo dance gives me an opportunity to perform different programs with many different kinds of music, dresses, etc.  I like to skate to all music but this year has been especially exciting as I love my freedance music (Eleanor Rigby) and it is so fun to perform.

Tell us about your training site. 
I train in Kalamazoo Michigan at Wings Event Center/Wings West and I am part of the J2S1 Solo Ice Dance Team coached by Jennifer Miller, Jennifer Heurlin-Brenne, Sarah Moreau, and Amy Czuhjewski. I couldn’t ask for a better coaching team.  They all care so much about each of their students.  We are so lucky to have this kind of special team of coaches in Kalamazoo.   My shadow dance partner Jordan Brenne is my best friend, teammate and competitor. She is one of the best parts of this sport for me.  We have so much fun no matter what we are doing.  I do off ice training with Dominique Passanante of Athletic Mentors she has been an amazing influence off the ice and really helped me to understand how important off ice training is to be successful on the ice.

Who choreographed your programs. What do you like best about dancing them?
Charlotte Maxwell Amos choreographed my rhythm and free dances this season. She also picked the free dance music.  She did an amazing job.  I am so thankful for the time she put into these programs.  Jennifer Miller and Jennifer Heurlin-Brenne also contributed to both programs as they always do. I am so lucky to have a team of coaches that really cares about my success and continues to make improvements throughout out the season to these programs.

Solo Dance is now an international discipline this season? Share your thoughts about this change.
This is such an amazing opportunity for solo dance.  I am so excited to see how this change impacts the future of solo dance. It has opened up so many opportunities for solo dancers.  I am so excited to participate in international competitions. s

In skating, what are you most looking forward to this season? What will be your biggest challenge(s)?
I am looking forward to what these programs can be by the end of the season.  I feel like they are getting better every day, and I just can’t wait to see the improvement by the end of the season.  My biggest challenge currently is getting the steps called in the rhythm dance. The Rocker Foxtrot is very hard to do solo and my goal is to get them called.

What do you think makes solo dance a special discipline?
It allows for creativity and grace and gives opportunity for everyone to dance whether or not they have a dance partner.  It is such an opportunity for so many skaters.  I feel honored to be part of solo dance.

If you could have a lesson with any ice dancer past/present, who would it be? Why? 
Tessa Virtue. She has so much expression and presentation I loved the Moulin Rouge free dance from the 2018 Olympics.

What are your favorite off-ice activities?
Spending time with friends, shopping, strength training, kayaking, and relaxing every now and then.

Please share anything else you would like our readers to know about you as a skater? 
I feel so lucky to have found a sport that is my passion.  Ice dance is a huge part of my life.  I set a goal every year to medal at the solo dance final and work very hard to achieve that goal.  The friends I have made through skating our life long and I am so lucky to have found a community that brings such joy to my life.