Davison, Dubé ready to make new impression
Bryce Davison is convinced a change to an old hit tune can help recapture the success he and pairs partner Jessica Dubé shared only two years ago.
In fact, the Cambridge, Ont., skater believes the decision to go with The Way We Were for the team's long program could leave audiences sobbing throughout the upcoming figure skating season.
"In all honesty we hope to make people cry when we skate," Davison, 23, insisted during a recent conference call while explaining the choice of a more romantic routine. "We hope to draw the people in so much that they feel like they're a part of it and they get emotionally attached to it."
Figure skating live chat
CBC Sports figure skating expert Pj Kwong will host a live chat at CBCSports.ca for the Trophée Eric Bompard on Saturday at 7 a.m. ET.
It won't take long to discover if the switch from Carmen to Marvin Hamlisch's 1973 classic will endear the couple to the skating faithful.
They begin their Grand Prix season Friday at the Trophée Eric Bompard event in Paris, where the tandem will open with Clint Mansell's Requiem for a Dream as part of the short program choreographed by Pasquale Camerlengo.
Dubé, 22, of Drummondville, Que., and Davison then unveil their David Wilson-choreographed long program on Saturday.
"Even if we make very small mistakes technically, we feel that our program is that powerful that it can pull people's emotions in and that's what people want because figure skating is such an artistic sport," said Davison.
But will that be enough to sway the international judges that the Canadian team is back in podium form? This weekend's competition could provide the answer.
The future looked bright for the Canadian team in 2008 after the duo captured a bronze medal at the world championships in Goeteborg, Sweden. Last season was an entirely different story, however, as Dubé and Davison stumbled to seventh at the worlds in Los Angeles.
Things only got worse for the Canadian pairs champions, who suffered a fall last April during the exhibition gala following the World Team Trophy figure-skating event in Tokyo.
The mishap occurred while they were attempting a twist lift.
Davison feels what the skaters endured had more to do with adapting to the music rather than any physical deficiencies.
"Last year our programs never fully developed and matured like we wanted them to," Davison said.
"Carmen was a great vehicle, but we could never really get the handle of it. I think this year with a little bit more maturity for both of us and just going back to something we feel a little more comfortable with we're doing exactly what we need to do to be on the podium like we were in 2008."
Of course, should Dubé and Davison find magic with a piece of music Barbra Streisand made famous more than three decades ago, the two could be standing on the podium at the Vancouver Winter Olympics in February — a thought not lost on Davison.
"It's something that we've been working toward since — whether we realized it or not — since we were three and four years old," he said. "[It's an] opportunity that can change our lives."