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2021 Nationals: Junior Dance

Wolfkostin & Chen Strike Gold in U.S. Junior Dance

by Liz Leamy



(22 January 2021) Katarina Wolfkostin  & Jeffrey Chen of the Peninsula Skating Club scored gold in the U.S. Junior Dance competition Thursday with a dramatic tango program for which they racked up a 98.41 for a winning 167.22 total score.

This duo, who trains in Novi, Michigan with Igor Sphilband and Pasquale Camerlengo, was second in this same event at the 2020 U.S. Championships and flew around the ice with the ease and expertise of seasoned American international dancers.

They performed such elements as complex lifts and a fast, well-positioned combination spin for which they earned plus four and three grade of executions scores.

According to Wolfkostin  & Chen, whose skating is defined by power, great edges and lightning-quick turns, their performance was largely inspired by their music, ‘Exogenesis: Symphony Part 3 Redemption’ by Muse.

“I think this music stood out for us,” said Wolfkostin. “I think in general classical contemporary types of music fit our skating.”

Chen agreed.

“There were a lot of songs we listened to,” said Chen. “When I heard this one, I loved this song.”

The duo said over the past year, they’ve worked extensively on the cleanliness of all their elements, something they’re seeing good results with so far.

“It’s something we’re really happy with,” said Wolfkostin.

Oona  & Gage Brown, the talented sister-brother team from Long Island, New York who placed third at the 2020 U.S. Championships in junior dance, scored silver with a high-charged and technically packed program to ‘Nothing Else Matters’ by various artists which earned them a 162.91 total.

This team, who trains in Dix Hills with Inese Busevica and Joel Dear and represent the Skating Club of New York, were happy with the quality of their program, for which they were awarded a 96.71.

“We felt strong overall,” said Gage Brown, elaborating on the strength of being a sibling team who skates together.

“We get along well and we joke around all the time,” said Gage Brown. “We’ve lived together our whole lives and enjoy trying different pieces of music, improvising and all that stuff.”

Katrina DelCamp  & Ian Somerville of the Dallas FSC and Washington FSC, meanwhile, edged out the bronze medal in this competition with a total of 147.30.

The duo racked up high points for their terrific free dance, to ‘Boogie Wonderland’ by Earth, Wind and Fire, ‘How Can You Mend a Broken Heart’ by the Bee Gees and K.C. and the Sunshine Band’s ‘Get Down Tonight’ that was electric from start to finish and for which they earned an 87.04.

DelCamp  & Somerville train in Leesburg, Virginia with Alexei Kiliakov, Elena Novak and Dmytri Ilin.