Kim Yu Na has returned to Los Angeles for training, and Time Magazine caught up with her for an interview. Let’s not forget that she is an alum of their Time 100 list, which is not an easy feat! They talk to her about everything from how South Korea can raise more talent like herself, to the music chosen for her performances.
Here is an excerpt from the interview, and you can read the rest here:
What was the first thought that crossed your mind when Pyeongchang was chosen for the 2018 Winter Olympics?
Relief. The Korean delegation worked so hard for 10 years to host the Olympics. I joined the team at the last minute, but the bid came to mean more when I saw from up close how much the rest of the delegation invested in it. I started thinking, “This really has to happen!” It could not be any other way.
Was the Olympics gold medal always your goal?
When I was little, I had never really expected to win such a big competition. For a long time, just skating in the Olympics had been my goal because not many Koreans had done it. But after doing well in junior and senior competitions, I started thinking about the Olympics gold medal, though it was fairly late in my career.
What’s your next goal?
I trained for a long time toward the Olympics. I was really exhausted after it was over, and rather than setting another goal, I just wanted to rest. More than physically resting, I wanted be free from the stress.
Last season, you mixed in motifs from Korean traditional music to your long program “Homage to Korea.” Was that a bit of risk?
Yes, because to non-Asians, Chinese, Japanese and Korean music could easily sound the same. I was really concerned about how to express “Korea.” I don’t think it can be done in any one motion or gesture or song, so I tried to focus on my own emotions. In the end, I think the program was very modern, despite its use of traditional music.
Read Kim Yu Na’s complete interview here.
South Korea’s interest in figure skating has grown largely with the accomplishments of Kim Yu Na. The incredibly gifted twenty year old gave great joy to the country when she won the Olympic gold medal in the Ladies Single division of figure skating.
Since then she has become even more of a bona fide celebrity, not only assisting with the successful bid for South Korea to hold the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang but also hosting a figure skating show “Kiss and Cry” with idols Krystal, IU, Yunho, and Son Dam Bi.