Romance and Mystery Novels

by Alina Adams

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Thursday, July 31, 2008

Maria Buterskaya on vacations.

Translation of an article by Inna Karagezjan printed in the Russian language publication on July 21, 2008.

World champion figure skater Maria Buterskaya and her husband hokey player Vadim Khomitsky went on vacation to the US.

Maria: “We spent two weeks in the US. First we went to New York for four days. You would not believe it, but we spent all of our time there shopping. We bought most of the stuff for our son. Clothing in Moscow costs much more than in NYC. Children are growing very fast and it does not make sense to buy them expensive clothing.

We bought for our son a jumpsuit for just 10 dollars. He will wear this suit four times and then will outgrow it. So we saved money. We also bought a very nice suit for my husband and some dresses and shoes for me. Vadim was very handsome in the new suit and I fell in love with him all over again.”

Maria said that she has a weak spot for the Big Apple and since she had an open visa, decided to visit NYC.

Maria: “We also had a great time in Miami. There we did not do any shopping but rather spent all the time on different attractions in the amusement parks. It was really nice and we felt as if we were 15 again. We did not take our son with us for this extreme excursion, he was with his nurse and my mother and I knew that he was safe.”

Immediately after their return from the states the family of Buterskaya and Khomitsky left for Chernogoria for summer training.
Monday, July 28, 2008


Evgeny Pluschenko and Jana Rudkovsky – We will have our wedding in Petersburg.

Translation of an interview by Maria Remizova (MR) printed in Russian language publication Komsomolskaya Pravda on July 17, 2008.

This publication was the first to break the story about the romance of Evgeny Pluschenko (EP) and Jana Rudkovskaya (JR). The lovers did not want to advertise their relations while both were in divorce proceedings. Now they are free and gave us an interview while they were practicing in Estonia’s city of Tartu, where they are preparing for an ice show.

MR – Evgeny, is it true that you will skate with Jana in the Ice Show?

EP – Yes, we are already practicing. We do not want to tell yet which TV channel would carry the show. We are working very hard – practicing twice every day. Jana is trying very hard - we are even performing some lifts already.

JR – To participate in the show I need to weight no more that 105 pounds. At present, I weight about 111 pounds. My coach tells me that I have to drop the weight if I would be interested in serious lifts. Since my childhood I wanted to be a figure skater, but I was not practicing since I was 5 or 6 years old.

MR – Will you skate with Evgeny?

JR – It is not clear at this time. Since Evegny is going back to amateur sports, we may only perform in exhibition shows. But he will definitely participate in this project as a member of the jury or as an announcer. I hope that we will create two numbers with Evgeny. We have the music already, which was written by Edwin Martin especially for Evgeny who dedicated it to me.

MR- Does Evgeny criticize you on the ice?

JR – But of course. He is very tough. He was telling me that my hands were like crab claws and I did not skate, but looked like a marionette. I was terrified. Now I am taking private lessons and my coach thinks that I am making progress. But Evgeny watches the tapes of the practice and says that it is not professional. Although lately he sees some progress.

MR- Aren’t you concerned that if you would have another partner Evgeny would become jealous?

JR – I think that Evgeny is not the jealous type. Also, we went through so much with him that I am 100 percent sure that he would not be jealous. Even if he would have another partner I would not be jealous. But I think that he will be strict if he would end up in the jury. He would definitely not give me a high mark. It is his principled position.

MR- Will Dima Bilan participate in your project?

JR – He agreed to about 90 percent. He wants to support me.

EP – Dima likes to skate very much and he is not bad at it. He even jumps on the skates. Jana is very goal oriented – in life and in sports. She has a goal to win at this project. She practices with my choreographer David Maldesh and my coach Alexey Mishin.

MR – Evgeny, a lot of people are talking about your return to the big sports. Are you getting ready for the Olympics?

EP – I have already returned. I am practicing my new program. There are a lot of problems and complications. I have to drop some weight. My old traumas are bothering me a little bit. But on the whole, I am fine. The main thing is that I want to do it. I am jumping a steady triple Axel already. I started practicing combinations and other triple jumps. I tried a quad toe-loop as well. It is all good. The 2010 Olympics is my main goal, but first we have to live through 2009.

MR – Many people looked at you as a couple, but not many believed in your feelings.

EP – We are a couple for a year and a half, maybe more. Many people know that we are a couple and we are not hiding our feelings any more.

MR – Where are you planning to be married?

EP – It will be definitely in Petersburg.

JR – At this time we have to solve all of our problems with the children and then we will think of marriage.

MR – Do you want a big wedding?

EP – We will see. I think that we will have a grand wedding; we have a lot of friends. After the wedding we will go to the islands. We have friends who would let us stay for 2 weeks at a villa for free that is usually rented for 45 thousand Euros a day.

MR – Has the bride ordered the wedding dress yet?

JR – No, not yet.

MR – Jana, will you take the Pluschenko name?

JR – There was already one Mrs. Pluschenko. I will stay with my own name or make it a double.

MR – Did the parents meet the groom or it is still ahead of you?

JR – Of course I met Evgeny with my parents and they were pleased with him.

EP – My family is friends with Jana. My parents like her. They have good relations. I know Jana’s parents as well. Everything is fine.

MR – When your mother first saw Jana what did she say?

EP- My mother first saw Jana on TV. When she met her live, she said that Jana was a normal intelligent girl. Now she is taking care of the two of us. She is watching out not only for my successes, but also for Jana’s.

MR – Will you go on summer vacations together?

EP – I will not have any rest now. Maybe Jana will have some vacations. But I am not sure; she will have to live without it. She has to practice. I am leaving for Petersburg for a week. Maybe I will go fishing for a day or two. My father is making the boat and fishing gear ready. After a week in Petersburg I will go for 2 weeks to Germany for sports camp. I will take Jana with me.

MR – Currently you live in two places – Moscow and Petersburg. Where will you live after wedding?

EP – I think that we will continue to live in both places. I have a lot of friends and projects in Moscow. Petersburg is the city that I love most. That is why I would never leave it. Jana also likes Petersburg. Currently we are building two houses in the suburbs of Petersburg – one will be a second home and the other will be a summer home. We will see how it will work out. Jana will definitely be coming back to Moscow since her children are there. I support her in her fight for her children. She is trying to work out a deal with her former husband. We need to stop fighting. We do not want to take the kids away from him. I understand that I will never become a father to them since no one could replace the biological father. We have to resolve this conflict in some peaceful way.

JR – I hope to reach a peace agreement with the father of my children and make it so my parents will be able to visit with my beloved sons. I hope that in the future we may be friends with my former husband.

MR – You have similar problems with children. Did it bring you together?

JR – Definitely. Evgeny is very supportive of me.

EP – Certainly I have a similar problem. I have problems with my former wife regarding my visits with my son, specifically on his birthday. It is not logical, since he is my son as well as hers. I am ready to bring him up. But I can not do it when I do not have access to him. I am not going to stoop down to fight with them.
Wednesday, July 23, 2008


Sasha Cohen: - “I want to perform at the World championship in Los Angeles.”

Translation of an article written in the Russian Language publication on July 21, 2008.

The silver medalist of the Turin Olympics, American figure skater Sasha Cohen, told us about her preparation for the new season and her work with the show Stars on Ice.

Sasha Cohen: “This summer, I started serious practice. I was not practicing for 2 years and last year did not even put on my skates. Now I am practicing in one rink where no one pressures me and where there is no competitive spirit. I am working on new elements, including spins. I also started working on my jumps, which I neglected for some time. I do not like to talk about what I am going or not going to do. This summer I will just practice.

I would like very much to participate in the World Championship which will take place in my native Los Angeles in 2009.

I did not know what to expect from the Stars on Ice show. It was fantastic. The format of the show was very different from what I was used to at the official competitions. I had a great time and worked a lot. And in the end I had more fun than I expected.”
Monday, July 21, 2008

Yagudin- I am not getting married yet!

Translation of an interview with Alexey Yagudin (AY) by Nadezhda Bushueva (NB) printed in the Russian language publication on July 15, 2008.

The famous figure skater broke up with singer Sasha Savelieva because he wants to play around some more. He left amateur sports, but his life is just staring.

He is 28 years old and thinks that this is not a serious age for a man. His horizons are getting wider. He is involved with a TV series on Channel One and he is acting in the theater in the role of president. He is dating the most beautiful ladies on the planet. He broke up with one of them recently, but he is not upset. He is in great demand now.

NB – Let’s start from the very beginning. When you were 4 your mother brought you to the rink….

AY – I came to sports by accident. My mother was walking with her brother along the Neva's shores and saw an announcement of a figure skating school’s admission.

NB – Tell us about your parents.

AY – My parents got divorced right after I was born.

NB – So, do you remember your father?

AY – No, I do not. If I would meet him on the street I would not recognize him. I have some segments of my memory of him though. Sometimes he would come over to our summer house. We played with him there. He gave me a collection of stamps and that was about all that I remembered of him. He was a research scientist as my mother was. I think that he went to Germany to work there and he is still there. But I may be wrong. He called me right after the Olympics and I talked with him as with a stranger. I do not even remember what we were talking about. He suggested for us to get together, but he never called me again. I did not pay much attention to our conversation since Anton Sikharulidze was waiting for me to play table tennis. In essence, my dad does not exist for me. Recently my mother got a man in her life whom I sometimes call my father. They are doing fine.

NB – Do you ever get mad?

AY – It is very difficult to make me mad. I do not even know what would make me mad. I react to everything with humor.

NB - When you are under stress would you take a drink or two?

AY – If the company is good and there is nothing to do the next day, why not? I think that the main point in handling alcohol is not to cross the line when a person becomes inhumane. Of course I was drunk sometimes, but I did not enjoy it.

NB – Tell us about your first love.

AY – It seems that the first mature feelings I had were for Elena Berezhnaya. Our situation was very uncertain. I bought her a ring and wanted to marry her, but I was only 19 years old then.

NB – Your last girlfriend Sasha Savelieva was telling us that you broke up because you stopped understanding each other.

AY – Well, it did not work out.

NB – Were you in love?

AY – Yes.

NB - Was it true that you wanted to marry her?

AY – Yes, I did.

NB – But you were dating only for half a year.

AY – Actually, if you would analyze all of my relationships, they never lasted for more than a year. Sasha is a wonderful person. I am thankful to her for everything that she done for me. May be it was me, may be I was too stubborn; it interferes a lot with my life. Same goes for Nastia Gorshkova. It did not work out with her as well, but I am thankful to her too. I am thankful to all of my women because each one taught me something.

NB – Why are all of your relationships so short lived?

AY – I wish I knew. But now I am single and I am happy.

NB – Are you ready to become a father?

AY – Not really. I do not want it. I do not have time for myself as it is now and if a child would appear I would not be able to handle it. I would hang myself. I do not want any children now. I think that it is not really necessary to get married. One could live without getting married. It was intriguing at 18- 19 years of age, but I do not want it now. My freedom is great!

NB – It seems that you are not mature enough for a serious relationship.

AY – Maybe. I may be wrong, but I always want something better. Whenever I would break up with a girlfriend, I was thinking that it was not meant to be. When we began our relationship with Sasha, I was so much in love and thought that it was for a long time. But something changed and we stopped understanding each other. Well, life goes on and it is not worth it to get upset. She has everything going for her – she is young, beautiful. In a year no one would remember about us.

NB – You must be an expert at handling women.

AY – I am trying to surprise them. I bought for Sasha a toy rat pirate, the biggest in the store. I arranged with her mother and while Sasha was out I brought it to her room and hid it there. I was always giving gifts to everyone – to some, earrings, to others vacation vouchers. Sasha loved postcards and I wrote them to her. Once I even cooked a dinner for her.

NB – Did Sasha dedicate poems to you?

AY – Yes she did. She was sending me a lot of text messages which I saved for the first time in my life.

NB – Was it love from first sight?

AY – I noticed her first – I liked her very much. I started sending her flowers. Everything was moving very fast. At the time that the press was talking about my romance with Victoria Daineko, I was courting Sasha. We sent each other TM’s, called on the phone and our romance took off. It is hard to say when liking transformed into love. Actually I do not believe in love. I believe in the attraction of one person to another.

NB – What about Victoria? It was said that you broke her heart.

AY – We are still friends. I like her, but I elected to be with Sasha. Actually, I had a broken heart once as well. I thought at that time that there would be no more happiness and that my life was ending.

NB – Maybe you would make up with Sasha and will be together again.

AY – It is hard to get in the same river twice.
Tuesday, July 15, 2008


Sergey Slavnov: “It is possible that our first start will the Championship of Russia.”

Translation of an article printed in the Russian language publication on July 9, 2008.

The Silver medalists of the European Championship, many time winners of the Championship of Russia, participants in the Worlds and Olympics, figure skaters Julia Obertas and Sergey Slavnow, who missed the 2007-2008 season will not participate in the beginning of the 2008-2009 season.

Says Slavnov: “We are not planning to participate in the very beginning, but may enter the season at the Russian National competition. We may also come back on ice earlier or later than that; it is hard to say at this time. In any event, we will not advertise our intentions to return to sports. We do not want to jinx ourselves. And, in general, we do not like the hype. We want our appearance in the competitions to comeM as a surprise.

The main thing for us now is to get ourselves in good emotional and physical form. That was why we took time off – to recover, especially psychologically, to find out what it was that we ourselves wanted. To get back the inner serenity which is very important for any person. When we feel that we are ready than we will come back on ice.

Competition with other skaters in the National does not bother us. If one would be afraid of competitors, why to be in sports? For Julia and me, the most dangerous competitors were always ourselves. It was that way when we competed with Totmjanina and Marinin and Petrova and Tikhonov. The situation will not change much now when the level of competitiveness in the Russian National team is low.”
Monday, July 14, 2008


Navka - I do not think that a husband’s infidelity is a reason to divorce!

Translation of an article by Natalia Shashina printed in Russian language publication on July 3, 2008

The famous figure skater is sure that no matter what, the family should be preserved.

The Olympic champion Tatiana Navka confessed that no matter what problems she may have with her famous husband - figure skating coach Alexander Zhulin, she will preserve her strong marital bonds with him.

The romances of both of them have bee the subject of lively discussions by their friends and acquaintances for quite some time. Many are puzzled why in this situation they are trying to preserve the family.

But the 33 years old figure skater, being a wise woman, feels that the family is the most important thing, no matter what. And no intrigues on the side can become the reason for divorce.

Tatiana fell in love with the very handsome sportsman Alexander Zhulin from the first glance. At that time he was a famous skater while Navka was just a beginner.

In essence, she took him away from his then wife Maja Usova and was able to build her happiness on the fragments of someone else’s.

Due to the help and support of Alexander, Tatiana became an Olympic Champion. Nevertheless she probably became a wife and mother too early. Her last romance with Marat Basharov, her partner at the ice show “The Ice Period”, is still agitating the minds of millions of her admirers.

And not that long ago Alexander Zhulin was seen going out to parties with his young pupil Natalia Mikhailova.

Neither of these events was able to break up the strong marital bonds of Navka and Zhulin. “There will be no divorce!” – states Navka.

It appears that the starry couple has a very progressive point of view regarding marriage. In any event, Tatiana feels that a woman has to do whatever it takes to save the family. And the most important feature for this is to be able to forgive.

One has to try to transfer any situation into humor, to be able to forgive, to tolerate, to be patient and for sure to understand the other person. One has to side with the other person, with his position, as to figure out why he was acting in a particular way.

Divorce is the final resort, especially if there are kids in the family, feels this “ice princess”.

In any event – the woman is the preserver of the hearth and home, states Navka. There are probably some things that are unforgivable, but women should be wise. Everything depends on the situation. "But I do not think that a husband’s infidelity is a reason for divorce!"
Monday, July 07, 2008


Irina Slutskaya: - Sport is not a life sentence!

Translation of an interview by N. Shulga (NS) with Irina Slutskaya (IS) printed in the Russian language publication on May 15, 2008

She is known as the “Iron Lady” of figure skating. Seven time European Champion; two time World Champion; Silver and Bronze Olympic medalist, she did not receive the main prize - the Olympic gold medal, although she suffered enough and deserved it. Nevertheless in the minds of many Russian people, she was an Olympic Champion, and not only in figure skating, but also in her character, in her persistence and in her whole life.

NS – Irina, we all were expecting you to come back on the ice. Instead, you became an actress in a theatrical play. Your theater debut hit us like a thunderstorm on a clear day. I understand that it is possible to hide from outsiders your private life, but why would you hide a career?

IS – It is because I do not like to talk about something before I have achieved it. I do not like to shout: “Look what I will do! I will jump over the fence and will reach a star in the sky.” If something would not work out I would have to apologize. So, as not to apologize later, one has to do the job, to feel yourself comfortable on your feet and then tell the world what you did. Do not talk about what you want to do, talk about what you have done.

NS – When did you start thinking first about the theater?

IS – Right after I graduated from school. But when you are in a big sport you can not do anything else.

NS – Were you going to the theater with your class?

IS – Normal students go to theaters; I would not consider myself a normal student.

NS – So, you probably went to the theater with your parents?

IS – You may remember that in those days one had to have connections to get tickets for the theater. We did go to some theaters, but it was not serious. I could not waste my time going after two things. Imagine my schedule: - I would get up very early in the morning and would go to practice; then I would go back home for 4 hours, would sleep for a while and go back on the ice. And that was every day from Monday to Saturday. The only day off was Sunday, but on that day I wanted to sleep as long as I could. I was always tired. To combine this regiment with anything else was impossible. One missed practice would cost me too much. Only after the Turin Olympics did I have time to catch up on theater going and shopping.

NS – At the show “Stars on Ice” you worked with a lot of famous actors. Did this collaboration influence your desire to try yourself as an actress?

IS – Actors are very interesting people, they always attracted me. I liked to go to their performance to see them in their roles.

NS – When famous actors are participating in the ice show they are not criticized for being unprofessional and for the absence of technique. I wonder why the theatrical critics were so hard on you?

IS – Actually, I was not harshly criticized by real theatrical critics. It was the “yellow press” that was hard on me, but it is normal. I would be more concerned if they would not mention my work in the theater at all. If they would be silent, that meant than they missed it. But I was interested in the opinion of real theatrical critics and would use it for improving my acting.

NS – I heard that you were working very hard on your role of Antigone even at home. Have you learned how to leave the role behind yet?

IS – Of course I did, or I would go crazy. Could you see what would happen if I would show up on the streets in the image of Antigone?

NS – The premiere of “Antigone Always” was in April. When will we see more of that show?

IS – In May. We are not a real theater, but rather an International theatrical laboratory run by Ms. Nika Kosenkova. The first show was in the city of Orel. The next one is in Moscow. I know that many other cities requested the show. The director would know better. I am a small actress in this show.

NS – But you played a big role. I think that Antigone is very close to your character. You both have a steel rod in your spine. I wonder if you would be able to play some opposite character, say a comic role.

IS – One can say anything, but you would not know until you try. It is similar to you asking me if I would go now to the World Championship, could I win it or not? I would not be able to answer until I tried. One has to try, to move forward and then it may happen that one would win. Do not forget that figure skating performance is also theater. But in the theater a performance is going for 2-3 hours, while on ice the performance is going for 4 minutes, in which the skater has to present the whole story of a character. So, I could say that I do have some experience in acting.

NS – When I recently saw you at the ice show I thought to myself that it seemed you were coming back on ice. You lost a lot of weight, you look great, and your skating is great! As if you did not give birth to your son recently. It looks like very quietly you are practicing with your coach Zhanna Gromova for the new starts.

IS – Yes, we are practicing with Ms. Gromova, but we do not have plans at this time to come back to the big sport. I retained my amateur status, but I do not have a specific goal yet, although I could find it at any moment. So, I would like you not to print any conclusions, since I have not reached them myself yet.

NS – It looks like your return would be very timely. The women’s singe skating is the main problem of the Russian team.

IS – Most of the people are thinking only about the Nationals. But it does not mean much these days. One has to reach higher, to win the Worlds and Olympics. To win at Russian nationals is not a big deal because the level of our skaters is very low now. Give me a month for preparation and I would win the Nationals, but why bother?

NS – Would you be able to return to the world’s elite level?

IS – For this I would have to work 6-12 months. Unfortunately due to travel with the show, I was not able to watch the World Championship this year, but I understand that the level there was serious. Nevertheless it is possible to fight.

NS – What would you tell people who are upset that sports people are getting involved in politics, art, and show business? They claim that sportspeople are getting into areas that they are not competent in.

IS – I believe that one could learn anything in this life. If a sportsperson quits sports at the age of 25, it does not mean that he should retire and sit home. Sport is not a life sentence; it is only a part of life. Of course it is a very important part when we are there. But everything comes to an end. Every person in their right mind is trying to find something new, to find a new goal and an objective for their life. My own opinion is that one has to learn something new first, and than try to get to the high levels in the new occupation. I disagree with anyone who tries to limit sportspeople to the boundaries of sports. It is the same as to tell women that their place is in the kitchen. I repeat – sport is not a lifetime profession. It is very scary when a sportsperson finishes their career and can not find himself in the after sports life. The next morning after winning the Olympics the sportsperson realizes that there is nothing else to conquer. At the age of 25-30 many sportspeople start their life from ground zero. Many Olympic champions in many sports are not occupied by shows. Not everyone wants or could become a coach.

NS - Personally I would hope that every champion would rediscover themselves after leaving sports. And I hope that the continuation of their careers would be also very bright. Could you say that in the two years after the Turin Olympics you have found yourself?

IS – I was not searching. Figure skating is still my main job. I am always on the ice – from the plane to the train and from the train to the show and so it is every day. I want to thank Ilja Averbuch who created a real ice show in Russia. Happiness is when one has the job that he likes and it pays well. You know why figure skating is good – it is because at any age it gives you a job. If you are a European, World or Olympic champion you may participate in the exhibition shows, skate in various tours. The ones of a lower rank may skate in different theaters on ice and shows. Many work on cruise ships and in the circus.

NS – Could your work in theater be considered as your search?

IS – I consider theater as my second profession. I tried myself there and I like it very much. Now I have to work a lot to succeed in it.

NS – What do you think – is it an easier life now for the Olympic Champions after completion of their career than it was 10-15 years ago? Is there any help from the Government? (Ed. note: The government has to help Olympic champions do what?)

IS - Olympic Champions are getting a lifetime salary of 15,000 rubles (about $600)

NS – Not much.

IS – You are forgetting that the ones who did not win are not getting anything although they gave to sports the best part of their lives. So, be happy that you are getting anything! You have your hands, your feet, go to work!
Wednesday, July 02, 2008


Tatiana Tarasova will become the new coach of world champion Mao Asada.

Translation of an article printed in the Russian language publication on June 24 2008

Tatiana Tarasova, famous coach in figure skating, former coach of Olympic Champion Aleksey Yagudin, will become the new coach of Mao Asada. Tarasova was a consultant to Asada prior to the last World’s Championship, which Ms. Asada won. That was the reason why now the 17 year old sportswoman decided to have Tarasova coach her full time.

“She worked with many great figure skaters and I am sure that I will learn a lot from her. She has prepared a new program for the next year especially for me,” said Asada.

Asada is planning to compete for the gold in the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver. Despite the change in coaches, Ms. Asada will practice in Japan. She plans to come over from time to time to Moscow and Ms. Tarasova will sometimes fly to Japan.

Prior to 2006 Olympics, Tarasova was working as a consultant for another Japanese figure skater, Ms. Shizuka Arokawa, who became the Olympic Champion. At the same Olympics another pupil of Tarasova's, Sasha Cohen, became the silver medalist.
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