I passed a Cirque du Soleil poster today and the performer pictured in it made me think of a skater. It made me wonder why Cirque is so very popular while skating shows are less and less so. Has anyone tried to assemble a Cirque-style skating show with any success?
SOI (like COI in the past) focuses on individual skating stars -- even with all the group numbers, there's a lot of hype of individual skaters and each one gets his or her special introduction, solo and (strongly milked ) round of applause. I find that approach to be less and less successful since skaters' fame is so narrow nowadays.
I'm curious whether a show that was more of a "magical event" would work. For example, that would be the perfect "home" for a number like the three angels piece that Johnny did with Melissa Gregory and Dennis Petukov. That trio went outside the figure skating box and was quite a hit, and I wonder what else could be done if skaters were willing to be more theatrical and imaginative.
These questions also made me think of P.T. Barnum, the circus founder who also promoted such diverse stars as Buffalo Bill, Annie Oakley, and the soprano Jenny Lind. In the 19th C. theaters and impresarios were much more willing to give audiences variety rather than demanding that people climb up to a Bayreuthian peak of great art. That's another possible way to bring skating to new audiences. Why shouldn't Alissa and Johnny (and Johnny-Stephane) do numbers in Cirque du Soleil? Why shouldn't Sasha and Plushy team up with Celine Dion in Las Vegas? (Sasha did a great exhibition to Dion's God Bless America.)
I know there have been many efforts to pair, e.g., skating and gymnastics, skating and fashion, but what I'm wondering about is whether either an old-fashioned or new-fashioned theatrical extravaganza could successfully include skating and whether that could be good for skating.
After all, it was Anna Pavlova killing that damn swan all over the USA for 10 years that gave us the ballet audiences of today. (Slight exaggeration....)
More off-season wonderings...