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March 16, 2024

John Curry

The Contemporary Skating Alliance consists of second and third generation skating companies that have grown out a late 20th century movement in ice skating performance that synthesizes ballet, modern dance, figure skating, ice dancing, and theater.

The modern movement in ice skating traces its synthesis to one brilliant visionary, John Curry.   Ballet and theater are centuries old art forms have taken root and became part of the western world’s performance culture vernacular.  Modern dance had arisen in the late 19th century as a revolt against the formality of ballet.  Both ice skating and Ice dancing became popular as both Olympic sports and tradition show skating like the Ice Capades and Holiday on Ice. In 1976 when John commanded the Olympic stage and won the Gold Medal in Men’s figure skating his performance drew heavily on classical ballet. This win in the world stage gave him access to support and funding to grow his own vision of what ice skating performance could be, The John Curry Skating Company.  By utilizing the concept of “company class” in ballet and modern dance training, John trained a hand selected group of professional skaters in theory and practice of class.  The company went on to perform on proscenium stages around the world to critical acclaim. 

John Curry – Scheherazade 1980 (Professional Version)
John Curry – Ice Symphony 1984 – Nocturne

More video
John Curry – With company

Thumbnail picture taken on June 28, 1977 by Bern Schwartz, National Portrait Gallery

author CSA's Research Team