Video: Figure skater performs to Lil Jon in gold-worthy routine
The Olympics will allow figure skaters to use music with lyrics for the first time, and American hopeful Jimmy Ma threw the gauntlet with Lil Jon.
Step aside, Tchaikovsky — the hottest thing in Olympic figure skating is now Lil Jon.
A recent rule change in the Winter Olympics allows figure skaters to perform to songs with lyrics, and Queens-born contender Jimmy Ma threw the gauntlet during the U.S. Figure Skating Championships on Thursday.
Check out the vieo of his dancefloor-worthy routine beginning with DJ Snake's Propaganda, then sliding into Turn Down for What around 2:13:
Besides watching Ma get a little raunchy on the ice, the best part of the video is listening to the commentators go from bemusement at his choice of house music to start, to stunned when Lil Jon kicks in. Hang onto your tights, guys and girls — it's promising to be an exciting season.
“I want the most amount of people to see that it is both an awesome art form and also an awesome sport,” Ma told USA Today Sports, which reveals the idea for the routine began over beer and barbecue with his choreographer. “The whole point was to get people hyped. Get older people hyped and for younger people to think it is cool.”
Even before the new rule change, figure skating has been having a moment.
Margot Robbie is chasing Golden Globes glory for I, Tonya, a riveting account of figure skating's most high-profile rivalry that's made every 2017 best movie list.
And last winter, the sport got a fresh infusion of younger fans thanks to the wildly popular anime series Yuri on Ice. The show follows an aspiring figure skater from a small Japanese town who suddenly finds himself being coached by — and falling in love with — Russia's most famous skater.
Just in case you thought this is the beginning of a less formal, more fun era of figure skating, lyrics have been allowed in competitions for years — though hip-hop is a new development.
Let's take a moment to remember a few other viral moments in modern figure skating history, like the incomparable Johnny Weir owning Lady Gaga's Poker Face in 2010:
In 2016, Yuzuru Hanyu stole the show at Japan's Grand Prix Final, taking to the ice in a purple ensemble for his routine to Let's Go Crazy by Prince:
And the woman considered to be the world's best young figure skater, Russia's Evgenia Medvedeva, in a stunning Sailor Moon routine at the World Team Trophy 2017 event in Tokyo: