Andy Potts Andy Potts
KHL press office KHL press office
exclusive for khl.ru

Our mascots don’t wait for someone to start the party – they kick the action up a notch all by themselves. The first stage of the battle to be named the KHL’s top mascot is underway, and we’re ready for a spectacular dance-off. Will the fans’ favorites put on a ballet, or go for a spot of krumping? Will we see retro or contemporary moves? And what will Egor Druzhinin, the curator of the first round, make of it all?

Crazy February: welcome to MascotsMania!

Everybody dance!

All around us, the world is in constant motion. And today, it’s not just the pros who can tell a story with their moves. A quick glance at the internet shows plenty of amateurs expressing themselves in dance – on the streets, at work, in the park and, of course, at sporting events.

Dance is an integral part of the universe – and of the KHL. After an emotional triumph, there is invariably an improvised victory dance; part celebration, part ritual of friendship.

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Just a regular Amur home game, until the arena security staff surprised the fans with an impromptu routine to Michael Jackson’s ‘Billie Jean’.

And let’s not forget Dance-Cam, which puts our most excitable fans on the big screen.

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And our cheerleaders are irresistible – even the stars love to join in. Here, actor and dancer Dmitry Krasilov busts a move at a Spartak game.

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It’s the same in the Junior Hockey League. After a victory, the locker room turns into a frenzy, with dance challenges and even parodies. There’s no need to introduce this clip – you’ll instantly spot the reference here.

In the Women’s Hockey League, the dance ritual is a well-established tradition. For several years now, the Women’s All-Star Game concludes with dance-off between the two teams as they have fun showing off their routines.

Time for the mascots

The KHL’s mascots are real professors of the science of dance and at last the time has come who has the sickest skills. We’re looking for the smoothest moves, the liveliest beats and the best improvisations even when the going is tough on the ice.

Director and choreographer Egor Druzhinin explained the rules for the first stage of our MascotsMania contest. From Feb. 1-7, will show off their dancing skills. The contestants should upload a video clip – not more than a minute long – featuring an original dance performance. Everything else is entirely up to the mascots – from the musical genres to the special guests who might help out.

All of the videos will be published on the competition website and the KHL’s official social media pages between Feb. 1-4. Day one highlights the mascots of the Tarasov Division, day two from the Chernyshev. Then, in turn, we’ll see the routines from the Bobrov and Kharlamov Divisions.

Our expert jury will choose its favorite clip and announce its choice in the final show. And the fans can take part as well, with a special prize for the clip that gets most votes on the competition website between Feb. 5-7.

Will our mascots go for energetic crumping, freestyle hip-hop, hardcore house or contemporary improvisations? We’ll soon find out. But, before we start watching the work of our club mascots, let’s find out a bit more about what to expect from our choreographer in chief, Egor Druzhinin.

– What do we mean by ‘contemporary dance’, and what styles are popular right now?

– Contemporary dance encompasses everything that we see in the evolution of today’s dance. And if I start listing every style that is popular at the moment, we’ll be here all day!

– What’s the main thing you are looking for in the mascots’ routines? 

– I’m mostly looking to see how the dance fits in with the image of the mascot.

– Does the size of the costume affect your review?

– Of course not. Size isn’t important. 

– Which style do you think will be most popular among our mascots?

– I don’t know, but I hope they won’t be twerking! 

– And is there anything you don’t think we are likely to see from our mascots?

– Classical ballet would be a big surprise. 

– Is there anything that might surprise you in these dances?

– Of course. First and foremost, it’s hard to guess how much technical skill they will have. Can they nail their moves? It’s hard to predict because I don’t know who is behind the mask. 

– There’s a lot of artistry in playing great hockey. Do you think some of them could succeed on the stage?

– Of course. It doesn’t matter what sport you play, or even if you play at all. Take me, for example. I play baseball, but as far as I know I’m the only ball player who dances.

Andy Potts Andy Potts
KHL press office KHL press office
exclusive for khl.ru
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