Olympic figure skating unveils new, modern soundtrack

GANGNEUNG, South Korea (AP) — When the International Skating Union made the popular decision to allow lyrics in all performances, the Paul Simon classic “The Sound of Silence” seemed like it would be a natural choice.

The folk tune is light and airy and fits neatly within the confines of traditional figure skating.

Vanessa James and Morgan Cipres went in another direction.

Yes, the French pairs team chose the 1960s hit for their short program last year, and will bring it back for their Olympic program Wednesday. But rather than the melodic version performed by Simon and Art Garfunkel, they opted for a haunting, heavy metal cover by American rock band Disturbed .

“It was our coaches who found it,” James told The Associated Press. “They were like, ‘We really think it could be a hit.’ And Morgan listened to it and was like, ‘I don’t like it,’ because we weren’t used to it. And I was like, ‘OK, let me see if I can get into this.’ I thought it could be amazing, and I was like, ‘Morgan, let’s trust them.’ And we were so right to have trusted them.”

That’s because the stirring rendition, coupled with the pair’s dramatic program, became such a fan favorite that they replaced this season’s program with it for the Pyeongchang Games.

“When you have a powerful voice and words to express,” James said, “it changes everything.”

Now, nobody is throwing tradition out the window. Fans still will see four Olympic programs set to “Carmen” and three to “Swan Lake.” Two programs are set to the figure skating staple “Moonlight Sonata,” including one by ice dance favorites Gabriella Papadakis and Guillaume Cizeron.

But the decision by skating’s governing body after the 2014 Sochi Games to allow lyrics in all disciplines expanded the breadth of what is available, and skaters have taken broad liberties with it.

Ed Sheeran and Coldplay will provide popular soundtracks to the rest of the Olympic skating scene. The rock bands Imagine Dragons and Snow Patrol, English vocalist Benjamin Clementine and pop musicians Lorde, Christina Aguilera and Adele also have music in the mix.

“At the beginning, people were just choosing random music,” Cipres recalled, “but after some time I think people realized it didn’t work. You have to choose your music carefully.”

Many skaters, such as James and Cipres, wound up choosing covers over an original. They may like the lyrics or message of a song but they also want …read more

Source:: Wtop – Entertainment

      

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