I have been totally astounded by the effect that this video has had on people that have watched it. I am so grateful for all the private messages I have been sent and for those that have been moved to leave comments on forums, and blogs, from all over the world, that link to this video.
The music is called ‘I Giorni’, and is by an Italian composer called Ludovico Einaudi. There is a story behind it, of which I was totally unaware when I was putting the routine together. It is inspired by a 12th-century West African folk song about a hippo who was loved by the people of the surrounding area but shot and killed by a hunter. Einaudi writes, “The song is sung as a lament for the death of a king or a great person or for the loss of a loved one.” I was imagining this routine during the most harrowing time of my life; while I was nursing my Mum, who sadly died before she ever got to see it. Whenever I perform it, it is always as a tribute to my best friend in life.
Look out for Piaffe, Half Pass, Spanish Walk … and two of our most unique moves, One Tempi (looks like skipping), and our beautiful ‘back to back’ move.
This video, as of 17/01/10, has had 625,549 views on YouTube!
Crufts 2009 Freestyle winning routine video.
This has been an amazing Crufts for Chandi and I. We qualified for both the Freestyle and Heelwork to Music Finals back in January and Thursday March 5 saw us competing in the Freestyle Final with our brand new ‘ballet’ routine, and , we WON! But there was no time to relax and enjoy our success as we were competing in the Heelwork to Music Final the next day.
Friday dawned and Chandi and I rolled weary and bleary eyed out of beds at 5.45 am to be back at the N.E.C. in time for the HTM Final. Chandi danced her little heart out and didn’t put a paw wrong throughout the routine and was again … awarded first place! But yet again, there was no chance to relax as having won theBritish Freestyle Final on Thursday, meant that we were now to represent England in the International Freestyle Final on Saturday. We were at a distinct disadvantage compared to the other teams competing as we were the only team that had been performing for two straight days, and we were exhuasted, but we pulled ourselves together, and Chandi gave her all in the ring, only making two small mistakes, one of which was due to ‘prop malfunction’, which reduced our accuracy mark … but … we won that too, making Chandi the only dog to have ever won all three competitions at the same Crufts.
Someone has uploaded our Freestyle routine to YouTube, but it is missing frames, but still very watchable – I shall hopefully try to upload a better version of this Freestyle routine, along with our winning Heelwork to Music routine at some point this week, so please check back!
Freestyle video, Crufts 2005.
This video is the ‘sister’ video to the Heelwork to Music/Dressage video. Chandi and I won the inaugural Crufts Freestyle competition with this routine in 2005.
Freestyle video, Crufts 2007.
Set to the music ‘Mack and Mabel’ that Torvill and Dean used to such good effect, this is our tribute to their stunning achievements in the world of Ice Dance! As of 17/01/10 this video has had 480,078 views on YouTube!