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Benjamin Agosto
Portrait of Benjamin Agosto 2023
Personal information
Full name Benjamin Alexandro Agosto
Country represented United States
Born (1982-01-15) January 15, 1982 (age 42)
Chicago, Illinois
Residence Colorado Springs, Colorado
Height 1.78 m
Partner Tanith Belbin
Former partner Katie Hill
Former coach Natalia Linichuk
Gennadi Karponosov
Igor Shpilband
Marina Zueva
Elizabeth Coates
Former choreographer Natalia Linichuk
Igor Shpilband
J. T. Hornstein
Skating club Arctic FSC
Training locations Aston, Pennsylvania
Canton, Michigan
Began skating 1989
Retired June 2010
ISU personal best scores
Combined total 221.26
2005 Worlds
Comp. dance 44.00
2005 4CC
Original dance 67.54
2005 Worlds
Free dance 111.54
2005 Worlds
Medal record
Figure skating
Ice dancing
Representing the  United States
Olympic Games
Silver 2006 Turin Ice dancing
World Championships
Silver 2005 Moscow Ice dancing
Silver 2009 Los Angeles Ice dancing
Bronze 2006 Calgary Ice dancing
Bronze 2007 Tokyo Ice dancing
Four Continents Championships
Gold 2004 Gangneung Ice dancing
Gold 2005 Hamilton Ice dancing
Gold 2006 Colorado Springs Ice dancing
Silver 2002 Jeonju Ice dancing
Silver 2003 Beijing Ice dancing
Silver 2007 Colorado Springs Ice dancing
Grand Prix Final
Silver 2004–2005 Beijing Ice dancing
Silver 2007–2008 Turin Ice dancing
Bronze 2003–2004 Colorado Springs Ice dancing
World Team Trophy
Gold 2009 Tokyo Team
World Junior Championships
Gold 2002 Hamar Ice dancing
Silver 2001 Sofia Ice dancing
Bronze 2000 Oberstdorf Ice dancing
Junior Grand Prix Final
Gold 2000–2001 Ayr Ice dancing

Benjamin Alexandro "Ben" Agosto (born January 15, 1982) is an American ice dancer. With partner Tanith Belbin, Agosto is the 2006 Olympic silver medalist, a four-time World medalist, the 2004–2006 Four Continents champion, and 2004–2008 U.S. champion.

Personal life

Benjamin Agosto was born January 15, 1982, in Chicago, Illinois, and raised in Northbrook, Illinois. He is the son of a Puerto Rican father and a Jewish mother whose family have roots in Romania and Russia. Agosto attended grade school at the Chicago Waldorf School, then spent two years at Glenbrook North High School, and graduated with honors from Michigan's Groves High School in June 2000. He played in a high school jazz band.

Agosto lived in Detroit, Michigan, from June 1998 and then Canton, Michigan, before moving to Aston, Pennsylvania, in the summer of 2008. He relocated to Lacey, Washington, in September 2010 and then to Scottsdale, Arizona, in 2014.


Early years

Agosto started skating at age six, after receiving a pair of ice skates for his birthday, and started ice dancing at about age 12. Early in his career, he was coached by Susie Wynne. He skated with Katie Hill from 1995 to 1998, competing with her on the novice and junior levels, including internationally. They skated out of Midwestern Section. When that partnership ended, Agosto moved from Chicago to Michigan in 1998 in order to train under Igor Shpilband.

Partnership with Belbin

In 1998, Agosto's coach partnered him with Canadian Tanith Belbin. In the 1999–2000 season, they won a pair of medals on the ISU Junior Grand Prix series and finished 4th at the JGP Final. They went on to win the U.S. junior national title and then took the bronze medal at the 2000 World Junior Championships. In 2000–2001, Belbin/Agosto competed again on the JGP series, taking gold in all three of their events including the Final. They appeared on the senior level at the 2001 U.S. Championships and won the silver medal, qualifying them for their first senior World Championships, where they finished 17th.

In 2001–2002, Belbin/Agosto made their senior Grand Prix debut and won another silver medal at the U.S. Championships, which would have qualified them for the 2002 Winter Olympics if Belbin had been an American citizen. Instead, Belbin/Agosto were sent to all the other ISU Championships for which they were eligible: Four Continents, Junior Worlds, and Worlds. They won the 2002 World Junior Championships, completing their set of medals from that event. Following that season, Agosto aged out of juniors.

Belbin/Agosto won the 2004 U.S. national title and would go on to repeat four times. At Nationals in 2005, the last year of the 6.0 system, they received straight perfect sixes for presentation in their free dance. Of the 30 6.0s given out in ice dance at U.S. Nationals, Belbin/Agosto have 14 of them. Their total 6.0 count at the U.S. Championships is second only to Michelle Kwan (38).

In February 2005, Belbin/Agosto organized and performed in their own figure skating benefit show, Skate Aid for Tsunami Relief, which raised more than $37,000 for Red Cross relief efforts.

Belbin/Agosto won the silver medal at the 2005 World Championships. Their silver medal combined with the placement of the other American team earned the United States three spots to the Olympics in ice dance, the first time this had happened since 1984. By a special act of Congress that passed on December 28, 2005, which President Bush signed on New Year's Eve, 2005, Belbin became a naturalized citizen of the US, making her able to compete for the United States at the 2006 Winter Olympics. Belbin/Agosto went on to win the Olympic silver medal in ice dance on February 20, 2006. They were the first American ice dance team since 1976, the first year ice dancing was contested at the Olympics, to win an Olympic medal.

Belbin/Agosto began the 2006–2007 season with a free dance called That's Entertainment but arrived at Nationals with a new program to the music of Amelie. They won gold at Nationals, the silver medal at Four Continents, and the bronze at Worlds.

In 2007–2008, they won gold medals at both Skate America and Cup of China which qualified them for the Grand Prix Final, where they took the silver medal. They won their 5th national title and then placed 4th at the 2008 Worlds after a fall by Belbin in the compulsory dance. Belbin/Agosto were regular cast members of the Champions on Ice tour from 2004 until COI went out of business following the 2007 season. They were guest stars on part of the 2008 Stars on Ice tour.

In April 2008, Belbin/Agosto left Igor Shpilband and began working with the married coaching team of Natalia Linichuk and Gennadi Karponosov at the Ice Works Skating Complex in Aston, Pennsylvania. In addition to teaching different technique, Linichuk advised Belbin to gain 10 pounds and develop some muscles in order to skate faster and more fluidly. This also gave Belbin more core strength to hold her positions better, thus making lifts easier for Agosto.

Belbin/Agosto began the 2008–2009 season at the 2008 Skate America and 2008 Cup of China, winning silver at both competitions. They withdrew from the 2008–2009 ISU Grand Prix Final after the original dance due to a back injury to Agosto. They withdrew from the 2009 U.S. Championships before the event began to due Agosto's injury. They were named to the team to the 2009 World Championships. At Worlds, they won the original dance and placed second in the compulsory and free dances to win the silver medal overall.

Belbin/Agosto won both their Grand Prix events in the 2009-10 season: the 2009 Cup of China and the 2009 Skate America. They withdrew from the Grand Prix Final for medical reasons. At the 2010 U.S. Championships, they were unable to reclaim their national title, finishing second behind Meryl Davis and Charlie White. Belbin/Agosto were nominated to represent the United States at the 2010 Winter Olympics. They finished 4th in the Olympic ice dancing event. They did not compete at the 2010 World Championships.

On June 10, 2010, Belbin and Agosto announced their retirement from eligible skating. Since then they have toured professionally in ice shows.

On December 15, 2015, U.S. Figure Skating announced Belbin and Agosto would be members of the U.S. Figure Skating Hall of Fame Class of 2016. The induction ceremony was held on January 22, 2016, at the 2016 U.S. Figure Skating Championships.

Later career

Agosto works as a coach and choreographer. He has choreographed for three Disney on Ice shows and in 2014, he became the director of ice dance at the Ice Den in Scottsdale, Arizona.

Also Agosto worked as a voice actor for a video game in 2006, and expressed an interest in continuing in the field. He has performed on television as a spokesperson for the United States Census.


(with Belbin)

Season Original dance Free dance Exhibition
Moldavian folk dance:
  • Moldovaneska
  • Falling Slowly

  • Cotton Eyed Joe
  • Country Waltz
  • Appalachian Hoedown
    by Bluegrass


  • Overture from That's Entertainment!
  • Let's Get Loud
    by Jennifer Lopez
  • Salsa Con Coco
    by Pochy y Su Cocoband
  • Let's Get Loud
    by Jennifer Lopez
  • Bulenas
  • Jaleo
    by Luis Winsberg
  • Duende
    by Esteban

  • American Woman

  • La Rosa

  • Let's Get Loud
    by Jennifer Lopez
Russian gypsy dance:
  • Shadritsa
  • Jitterbug: 5 months, 2 weeks, 2 days
    by Louis Prima
  • Blues: Give me Some Money Too
    by Leni Hester
  • Swing: Hey Pachuco
    by Royal Crown Revue

  • Green Acres
  • Elvis Presley medley
    (modified FD)
  • Sarajevo
    by Goran Bregovic
  • Oscar Tango
  • Alexandros
    by Staminis Spanudikis
  • Une Vie d'Amour
  • Une Vie d'Amour

Competitive highlights

With Belbin

Event 1999–00 2000–01 2001–02 2002–03 2003–04 2004–05 2005–06 2006–07 2007–08 2008–09 2009–10
Olympics 2nd 4th
Worlds 17th 13th 7th 5th 2nd 3rd 3rd 4th 2nd
Four Continents 2nd 2nd 1st 1st 1st 2nd
Grand Prix Final 3rd 2nd WD 2nd WD WD
GP Cup of China 1st 2nd 1st 2nd 1st
GP Cup of Russia 2nd 1st
GP Lalique 6th 3rd 4th
GP Skate America 5th 3rd 1st 1st 1st 1st 2nd 1st
Goodwill Games 5th
Nebelhorn 1st
International: Junior
Junior Worlds 3rd 2nd 1st
JGP Final 4th 1st
JGP Canada 1st
JGP Germany 1st
JGP Japan 2nd
JGP Mexico 1st
U.S. Champ. 1st J. 2nd 2nd 2nd 1st 1st 1st 1st 1st WD 2nd
Team events
World Team 1T / 1P
GP = Grand Prix; JGP = Junior Grand Prix; J. = Junior level; WD = Withdrew; T = Team result; P = Personal result; Medals awarded for team result only.

With Hill

Event 1997–1998
JS Bulgaria 7th
JS Slovakia 10th
U.S. Championships 7th J.

See also

  • List of Puerto Ricans - Sports
  • List of select Jewish figure skaters
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