Metchosin’s Murray Anderson with Olympic gold-medal-winners Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir in Pyeongchang, South Korea. Anderson was hired to compile, organize and play music for all figure skating events at the 2018 Winter Olympics. (Contributed photo)

The man behind the figure skating music at the Olympics

Metchosin’s Murray Anderson compiled athletes’ music

While many West Shore residents watched figure skating at the 2018 Olympic Winter Games from the comfort of their homes, Murray Anderson had one of the best seats in the house.

Seated behind the judges and next to event co-ordinators, TV producers and announcers in the Gangneung Ice Arena in South Korea, the Metchosin resident was just a stone’s throw away when figure skaters such as Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir hit the ice for performances.

“It was great,” said Anderson of seeing the action up close. “A lot of the athletes you’ve known them for a long time and you’ve seen them progress. The Olympics is a pretty good event to watch up close.”

For the last month, Anderson has been on a whirlwind trip. First arriving in South Korea in early February, he was contracted to compile music for the figure skaters, organize it, then, along with the help of six other Korean volunteers, supervised the playing of it at practices and during medal rounds.

RELATED: Virtue and Moir end ice dance careers with Olympic gold

It’s a passion that started in 1972 when Anderson was 16 years old and volunteered to play music for figure skaters in Victoria. Since then, he’s become one of the best in the business, and is often called upon to work at high profile events for Skate Canada.

This isn’t his first go at the Olympics either. He also complied music during the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver and the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.

Over the years playing music for athletes at various ice rinks, Anderson has gotten to know many of them. He’s worked with Virtue and Moir for several years – most recently in the Canadian championships in Vancouver – so to see them win the gold medal in South Korea in free skating in the last performance of their career was a moment Anderson will never forget.

“To see them move on to the Olympics and do so well is pretty good,” he said. “It was great. It was fabulous. They had taken a year off and proved that they could do it and did a great job.”

RELATED: Video: Virtue and Moir lead Canada into 2018 Winter Olympics opening ceremony

But Anderson admits he tries not to get too wrapped up in the excitement of the Olympics. Ultimately, it’s the job that comes first.

“Really the best thing is to be seen and not heard. I don’t generally seek [athletes] out,” he said. “If somebody skates by us and they recognize us, then that’s okay. But you’re not down there on the boards chatting to them. They have a job to do and we have a job to do … You don’t really talk to them until it’s all over.”

Even after wrapping up the Olympics, Anderson shows no signs of slowing down. In the coming weeks, he’ll be in Burnaby and Parksville playing music at other figure skating events.

In the end, Canada closed the Winter Olympics with 29 medals, behind Norway which finished with 39 medals and Germany with 31.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

kendra.wong@goldstreamgazette.com

Just Posted

Man pleads not guilty in 1987 slayings of Victoria couple

William Talbott of SeaTac was arraigned Tuesday in Snohomish County Superior Court

BC Supreme Court rules in favour of Victoria’s plastic bag ban

Court dismisses a challenge by the Canadian Plastic Bag Association

Officials worry of fire risk at homeless camp

Regina Park camp has grown to 77 tents

Oak Bay Optometry barbecue raises funds for Senegal ocular health

Fundraising barbecue June 28 from 5 to 9 p.m. at 2075 Cadboro Bay Rd.

Crews search for missing kayaker near Sooke

The person was seen launching their kayak from Beecher Bay on Monday at noon

Willows school boasts newest Oak Bay playground

Grand opening Monday at École Willows elementary

Port of Prince Rupert names Shaun Stevenson as new CEO

Stevenson has worked for the port for 21 years as vice president of trade development

POLL: Do you have a family doctor?

“I don’t have a family doctor,” is an all too familiar phrase… Continue reading

Senate officially passes Canada’s marijuana legalization bill

Bill C-45 now moves to royal assent, which is the final step in the legislative process

Fake attempted abduction not funny to B.C. neighbourhood residents

Two teenage boys won’t face criminal charges after scaring girl

Mosquitoes out in full force already? Blame the weather

But a B.C. mosquito expert says the heat wave will help keep the pests at bay

New GOP plan: Hold kids longer at border – but with parents

Move would ease rules that limit how much time minors can be held with their parents

Without a big data strategy, Canadians at risk of being ‘data cows’

Presentation said artificial intelligence could give Facebook and Amazon even more power

Five B.C. families stuck in Japan as Canada refuses visas for adopted babies

Lawyer points to change in American policy around adoptions from Japan

Most Read