The Song From Maia & Alex Shibutani’s 2018 Olympics Free Dance Is Packed With Meaning

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On Monday night, the United States' "Shib Sibs" competed in the free dance portion of the Olympics ice dancing competition. The song from Maia & Alex Shibutani’s 2018 Olympics free dance ice dance, "Paradise," by Coldplay, completes what the duo sees as their ice dancing trilogy — a personalized approach that they have taken to developing their ice dancing performances.

As the Detroit Free Press reported, Maia and Alex have taken the "trilogy" approach to creating their free dances for the past three years — and the Olympics marked their capstone performance. As the article described, the idea for a more personalized, trilogy approach to their ice dancing developed after the pair encountered challenges in their performances, finishing ninth at 2014's Sochi Olympics and securing disappointing placements at worlds and nationals in 2015.

Thus, in 2016, the pair began laying the foundation for the trilogy concept, seemingly as a way to find their footing in the sport again. They selected Coldplay's "Fix You" as the first song of their trilogy, using it for their free skate performances in 2016. Alex expounded on the trilogy idea to the Detroit Free Press, saying,

In 2017, the duo chose to skate to a program called "Evolution." Maia noted that the title of the program epitomized their goals for the season, saying to the Free Press that they "wanted to push our artistry and really look deep and develop our strengths ... it was a very different program from ‘Fix You.'"

For the final piece of their trilogy, the 2018 season and the PyeongChang Olympics, the duo chose a song, "Paradise," that highlighted their expectations for the games and described the magical experience of the Olympics. Alex spoke extensively about the duo's song selection with Entertainment Weekly, noting:

Alex and Maia's hard work over the past three years certainly paid off on Monday evening, as the sibling duo won bronze medals in the Olympics ice dancing event. After the pair's victory, Alex posted a photo on Twitter of himself and Maia posing with their medals. He wrote at length about what the victory meant to them, saying:

Clearly, Maia and Alex's thoughtful and personalized dedication to their performance really resonated with the judges and audience members — and helped them make their Olympic dreams come true.