Harken all yon mortals,
Heed the trumpets call.
‘Cross veils an’ o’er portals,
A titan walks amongst us all.
From Olympus summit,
Could easily, she hail.
Or of a divine plummet,
Could come this angel that cannot fail.
Amongst the legends she belongs.
In Themyscira, she‘d be at home.
Because the mighty amazons,
Recognize their own.
It could be any pantheon,
Story, fable, tale, or myth.
We’d be less surprised that she belonged,
Than we are that she exists.
I herald as she guides us.
Because she is so thrilling.
Because she walks beside us,
And lifts us up when we are willing.
You can see in it the joy and the relief of finding the perfect music for the free dance, and even the (phonetic) similarities between Clair de lune by Debussy and Sonate “Au clair de lune” by Beethoven. The Christopher Dean-effect when it comes to their short dance: “It gave us confidence and pushed us to have fun with it, and not be scared of it”. The air of the Olympics, the “huge stage” that it was for all the athletes – and their own struggles, disappointments, but also the support they felt, the energy of it. And the medal with the rings, encapsulating all the work and the commitment, and feeling like “a really great achievement”. And then the end, in Milan, with them performing their programs in Mediolanum Forum as if they were show-programs, pressure aside – “one of the first times that we really got to experience this feeling on the ice”. At 22 and 23, Gabriella Papadakis and Guillaume Cizeron won their third World crown, and they’re the current holders of every ice dance record there is.
And so this interview is like a picture of their last couple of months, as taken by themselves – with all the lights and the half-shades, the threads and the contours.
This is the shape of their Olympic season.
by Florentina Tone/Milan
I’m meeting Guillaume in the mixed zone of 2018 Worlds – and, as last year, we’re setting up the “camp” for the interview in the green room. Luckily for us and our ears, there’s no such thing as the dismantling of the arena yet, nor the metallic noise to accompany the conversation.
There is a particular kind of soundtrack to this interview though. The Blues Brothers, Luther Vandross, Mariah Carey, or Metallica – the Worlds exhibition has just started, and we’re a few meters from the ice.
The first topic on the table is just how long this season has been – and it’s still not over yet: a day later, he and Gabriella would leave for Paris, for a media tour, and right after, with the rest of the French team, they’d be skating in 25 shows during La Tournée des Stars Olympiques. ***