History of Synchronised Swimming
In 1907, Australian, Annette Kellerman, performing in a glass tank, had attracted national attention at the New York Hippodrome as the first underwater ballerina. In the 1920s, a group of Canadian women developed what they called 'ornamental swimming'.
Katherine Curtis started a water ballet club and performed in the lagoon at the Century of Progress World's Fair in Chicago. The display at the 1934 Chicago World's Fair drew rave reviews. A Hollywood phenomenon: Esther Williams portrayed Kellerman's life in the musical Million Dollar Mermaid. She also performed in a string of MGM "aqua musicals" in the 1940s and '50s. Over the next 20 years the art developed into a sport becoming extremely technical and athletically demanding. Music was added to the routines, and the name changed to "synchronised swimming".
In 1960, after a world tour, U.S. swimmers demonstrated the sport at the Olympic Games in Rome. Synchronised swimming officially became an Olympic Sport. Duets (two swimmers) and teams (eight swimmers) currently compete at the Olympic Games.
The inclusion of the sport at the Olympic Games has raised the profile of synchronised swimming significantly and the diversity of this aesthetic discipline combined with the highly skilled athlete's ability in the water has become increasingly more popular with the media and events industry.