Norwegian Sonja Henie is a figure skating legend who is also considered the first ice skating celebrity. She dared to try the same jumps as the men and won gold at three different Olympics. She also became one of the most popular movie stars in Hollywood.
At the age of fourteen, Henie won the first of an unprecedented ten World Figure Skating Championships in 1927, and her first Olympic gold medal the following year. She went on to become a three-time Olympic Champion (1928, 1932, 1936), a ten-time World Champion (1927-1936) and a six-time European Champion (1931-1936).
Henie is credited with being the first figure skater to adopt the short skirt costume in figure skating, and make use of dance choreography. Her innovative skating techniques and glamour transformed the sport permanently and confirmed its acceptance as a legitimate sport in the Winter Olympics.
This video shows one of Sonja Henie’s ice show performances.