TEL AVIV – Israel’s Culture Minister on Sunday slammed a Russian reality television show for featuring a Holocaust-themed figure skating performance in which the skaters – one of whom is the wife of President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman – wore concentration camp uniforms decked out with yellow Stars of David.
“Holocaust themes are not for parties, they are not for dancing, and they are not for reality shows,” Miri Regev told Army Radio. “Any attempt to present the Holocaust in that way is inappropriate and has no place.”
The popular talent show “Ice Age” featured ice dancers Tatiana Navka, the wife of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov, and actor Andrey Burkovskiy.
“None of the six million danced and the death camps were not a summer camp, and I think that perhaps they need to understand that themselves from our responses,” Regev said.
The performance, which received a warm round of applause from the audience, earned a score of 12.00
In an Instagram post, Navka said the performance was based on the 1997 Holocaust film “Life is Beautiful,” which she said is one of her favorite movies. She added that children need to know about the Holocaust.
Social media users slammed the performance, with one saying it was “staggeringly offensive.”
Another Twitter user wrote, “This might be offensive if they hadn’t take such great care to recreate all the wonderful ice dancing going on at Aushwitz [sic] at the time.”
The Jerusalem Post noted that it wasn’t the first time Russian reality TV broadcast a Holocaust-theme performance. A routine for Russia’s version of “Dancing with the Stars” in April featured a man dressed as a Nazi officer searching for a young Jewish girl in hiding. The dancer demanded the Jewish girl come out of her hiding place before “shooting” at her. The routine was set to Frank Sinatra’s “Fly Me To The Moon.”