bOver the weekend in Moscow, a scandal broke out at the test run of the Russian figure skating team. Russian figure skater Pyotr Gumennik, one of the stars of the current season, was prohibited from dancing a short program to Rammstein music immediately before the performance. The 21-year-old figure skater, who recently won silver at the Russian Championships and became the country’s top overall skater for the 2022-23 season, spent months rehearsing solo choreography for Rammstein’s “Sonne,” which was not approved by the sport’s authorities and has long been the subject of objections.
However, in a letter of complaint addressed to the Russian Skating Association and Russian Sports Minister Oleg Matyzin, the choice of music was criticized as “unpatriotic and bad,” Russian media reported. The head of the Gumennika club, Tamara Moskvina, then asked her coach Veronica Daineko to cancel the Rammstein number. “Tamara Nikolaevna (Moskvina) said that this is a matter of national importance and we cannot put our own interests above the importance of the state,” the Russian news portal Sports.ru quotes Daineko. “What we want is not enough. Our association stated that it was undesirable to play Rammstein, but there were no threats that we would be punished.” The coach also stated that her student had only three days after changing to the music of a German rock band to prepare.
Matyzin ruled out government interference in the choice of music, he told the Russian news agency TASS. “This is within the competence of the federation, and it must make a decision,” said the Russian sports minister. “Therefore, it is necessary to take a more professional approach to the selection of squads. We must have a more open policy towards athletes and determine what musical works can and cannot be used. I did not regulate this issue and did not make any recommendations to the association.”
Although Rammstein is very popular in Russia, three-time Olympic champion in figure skating, State Duma deputy Irina Rodnina defended the change of song in Gumennik’s program: “I think he should have chosen his music more carefully. And there is nothing wrong with the fact that he was banned, this kind of thing happens This is not the first time.”
Criticism of the ban came, in particular, from world champion in pair skating Anastasia Mishina: “Figure skating is an art. The athlete chooses the music that is closest to him to express his feelings. But, unfortunately, such situations also happen,” she said. “I want all this nonsense to stop one day.”
Source: Frantfurter Allgemeine
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