From August 8–12, the Liederhalle Culture and Congress Center in the picturesque German city of Stuttgart was the scene of the 31st German Open Championship (GOC). With over 5,000 competitors from 57 countries, including a glittering line-up of defending champions, it’s the biggest dance competition in Europe. They included amateurs and professionals, juniors and seniors, and wheelchair competitors, doing everything from Boogie-Woogie to Ballroom and Latin to Showdance.
Swarovski has been sprinkling crystal magic over the world of dance for well over a century—ballet and ballroom, opera and musicals, as well as dance sport—and has sponsored the competition for three years now. “Crystal and dance make for a beautiful symbiotic partnership,” says Tord Nordheider, Executive Vice President Swarovski Professional, “made possible by our longstanding collaborations with top dance sport designers and brands.”
Costumes are crucial to competition for their ability to accentuate movement under spotlights. To this end, Swarovski crystals are strategically hand-placed on outfits in such as way that they throw off myriad shards of light as they track movement across the stage. “It’s all about performing in a situation where the attention of thousands of people is focused on maybe just one individual,” says Peter Dobner, Director of Chrisanne Clover. “Crystals have the ability to reach even the people sitting in the last row, creating a special connection with them.”
It’s a view echoed by Katia Convents, well-known dance costume designer who uses Swarovski crystals for their ability to create atmosphere. And as for the performers themselves, it is no different: world-champion dance duo Austrian Kathrin Menzinger and Ukrainian-born Vadim Garbuzov cannot imagine dance sport without Swarovski crystals: “A dance competition or a dance outfit without sparkle is unimaginable—crystals enhance everything we do.”
At GOC 2017, Swarovski displayed its distinctive creative capabilities with a mesmerizing display stand at the venue, showcasing spectacular costumes from three designers intricately embellished with crystal artistry. In addition to the crystal maison’s contribution to dance outfits, the trophies it provided, which were awarded to the Grand Slam winners were, to quote organizer Harry Körner “not just trophies, but something truly fabulous. That’s the power of crystal—it sparkles just like dance sport, Swarovski, and the GOC.”