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Robert PAUL

Canada
TeamCanada
Olympic Medals
1G
Games Participations2
First Olympic GamesCortina d'Ampezzo 1956
Year of Birth1937

Biography

Figure skater Robert Paul, alongside his partner Barbara Wagner, was the dominant Canadian male pair skater in the late 1950s and into the 1960s. They had started to skate together when Paul was 13, and they were Canadian champions for five consecutive years (1955-1960), North American champions for three (1957-1959), world champions for four (1957-1960) and, after finishing 6th at the 1956 Winter Olympics, capped off their career with a gold medal in pairs at the 1960 Games. They had also competed at the 1955 and 1956 World Championships, finishing 5th both times. He was the flagbearer for Canada in the opening ceremonies for these Olympics and, having won Canada’s top athlete award, the Lou Marsh Trophy, in 1959 with Wagner, he retired that year. They continued their partnership from 1961 through 1964, however, as professional skaters with the Ice Capades. He then moved to Los Angeles in an attempt to become an actor and joined the cast of television’s Bewitched as a skating teacher. In order to survive financially in California he had to teach skating on the side and ended up mentoring future Olympic gold medalist Peggy Flemming. He also found work as a choreographer, becoming one of figure skating’s first specialists in the field. He guided the performances of many stars including Flemming and another future gold medalist Dorothy Hamill, in addition to working on the Donny and Marie Osmand show. He worked a total of 16 years (1970-1986) with the Walt Disney Corporation on their skating productions as the director of choreography and also as a talent scout. He was made a member of the Canada Sports Hall of Fame in 1957, the World Figure Skating Hall of Fame in 1980 and the Canadian Figure Skating Hall of Fame in 1994.

Robert PAUL
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