Putting Bloomfield in the Spotlight from Sochi, Russia
Meryl Davis and Charlie White, both from the Bloomfield area, have skated their way to have earned six national championships, two world championships and a silver medal in the Vancouver Olympic games in 2010. They currently are now the only American figure skaters to be favorites to bring home the first U.S. ice dancing gold medal in the Winter Games in Sochi, Russia.
Ice dancing is a discipline of figure skating built around extreme precision and showmanship much like ballroom dancing. Unlike pairs skating, there are no jumps with more than one revolution, no throwing of a partner, only complex lifts where the female skater does not go above the male skater’s head are allowed. Also, ice dancers must always skate to music that has a beat or rhythm. A team is judged on how perfectly in sync they are and how well they make the music come alive.
They came together as a team as a type of fate, he was from Bloomfield Hills, Michigan and she was from West Bloomfield, 10 minutes away, and they were both such brilliant young skaters. Their parents were best friends. White played hockey, Davis had aspirations to be a solo skater, but it was meant to be that they would be paired together as ice dancers. Meryl was about 5 when she started skating at the Wallace Arena on the campus of Cranbrook in Bloomfield Hills. This is also where Charlie and Meryl first met one another. They began taking skating lessons at the Detroit Skating Club in Bloomfield Hills. Meryl was 9 and Charlie was 8 when they began skating together as a pair. Their success together was due to a myriad of things, they lived near each other, they had similar goals, they both worked very hard and they got along really well together.
They won a silver medal at the U.S. Junior Olympics their first year together. They are five-time reigning U.S. champions and have won silver or gold each of the last four World Championships. In 2011, they were the first American ice dancing champs at the World Championships. They have also won 15 gold medals and 3 bronze medals in the Grand Prix Events. They are the only ice dancing team to have won the Grand Prix Final title 5 times.
They both attend Michigan. He is majoring in political science. She is majoring in cultural anthropology. They are the longest-running ice-dancing partnership in the history of U.S. figure skating.
“There is so much complexity to an ice-dance partnership,” Davis said. “You know, we are friends. We are coworkers. We have to pretend like we are in love on the ice. It’s a very dynamic relationship that has a lot of facets to it.”
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