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Thread: The Opening Ceremonies Thread

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    The Opening Ceremonies Thread

    Thanks for the separate page. I might as well get this thing started. I know that some of you have already seen the opening ceremonies. Feel free to let fly. I just like to get my 2 cents worth in.

    Some notes about Opening Ceremonies in general -

    1- Part of the Olympic charter says that the Opening Ceremonies of any Olympics should reflect the culture of the city and/or country they are in. It frustrates me when American Opening Ceremonies produce so much outrage from people who say that the Ceremonies are too "American". They are supposed to be.
    I'm sure the Athens opening ceremonies will be very Greek - as they should be.

    2- Opening Ceremonies look different in person. I got to be a part of the Salt Lake Opening Ceremonies dress rehearsal. When I read a number of sniping comments about them, I realized that viewers of the TV broadcast just can't get the same feeling as those in the stadium. Organizers even plan for the commercials. Some of my favorite music of the Salt Lake Ceremonies took place during the commercials. I always give the Ceremonies the benefit of the doubt. It's like being at a skating competition live - it's just different.

    3- The best opening ceremonies of all time is, was, and probably always will be the 1984 Los Angeles Opening Ceremonies.

    So now I'll shut up.

  2. #2
    Champion Skater (Vicariously)
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    I am SOOOO glad that we have a section of the forum dedicated to the olympics!!! I'm counting down the mins till the ceremonies air here in the central time zone. YAY!!!!

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    I'm watching thr replay of them now. Fabulous so far. The rings of fire were a nice touch. I liked all the Greek history stuff, too. Sigh, I love the Olympics.

    I don't really have a favourite opening ceremonies. Calgary, Lilehammer, Salt Lake City and Sydney were great. Atlanta was good. I remember not really liking Albertville. A little too avant garde for me. For some reason I don't remember Nagano (although I do remember the huge smuggled -in Canadian flag from the closing ceremonies ) That's as far back as I can remember.

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    GOLDEN DREAMS RealtorGal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Longhornliz
    I am SOOOO glad that we have a section of the forum dedicated to the olympics!!! I'm counting down the mins till the ceremonies air here in the central time zone. YAY!!!!
    And I'm counting them down until Pacific Standard Time! Yay!

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    Custom Title heyang's Avatar
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    I think I agree with AH Black with regard to stunning opening ceremonies. I remember the opening of the LA Oly's in 84. It was quintessianlly American in production with many references to iconic America. It was also audience participatory. Everyone had cards on their chairs; they were instructed to hold the white side up at a moment and then turn them over. When everyone turned them over, the flags of all the different countries were displayed. I was working at IBM as a summer clerk at the time and I worked in the department that provided the message center for the athletes. Some of the guys I met actually went to the games and they said the sight of all the flags appearing from these cards was amazing. It took a lot of work to ensure that each flag was distinct - no flag bordered another flag of the same base color.

    The other Oly's have had their highlights too. I remember the arrow lighting the torch in Albertville's in 92. Otherwise, some of them blur - was it in 02 that the US Hockey team lit the torch. I also remember when Muhammad Ali lit it, too - but not which year.

    So far, I've enjoyed this year's opening ceremonies. I really enjoyed the break apart tribute to Greek sculpture. I think the producers did a bad job at showing the floats of Greek history. They were a little too close; they needed to pull back a couple of feet to get the full effect of the float without losing the detail. While i was watching, I felt as though the image was cut off.

    Still watching the parade of nations. Although it's kinda dull, I like the tradition since it gives each team a moment in the spotlight.

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    I feel bad for all of you from the US. CBC's REPLAY started before NBC even went to air with the Opening Ceremonies! Not to mention you have to deal with the crap that Bob Costas and Katie Couric spew.

    I thought it was a great ceremony. I loved that it didn't feel overwhelming; it was elegant and moving. The Parade of Nations was a little long but that's to be expected with 202 countries taking part.

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    I've been learning about the women from Afghanistan. The flag bearer is an athletic champion in her country who coached in secret during the taliban. There is a judo competitor and a 100 m. track athelete - her best time is around 15 seconds. She will compete in long pants, long sleeves and a head scarf.

    I thought they looked beautiful.

  8. #8
    ~ Figure Skating Is My Passion ~ Ladskater's Avatar
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    The Greek Ceremony looked pretty spectacular to me. At least what I saw of it. Really got the flavour of the Greek culture. I don't know what point I came in as I just tuned in after work. I imagine I will see a recap later. The CBC is doing a wonderful job of coverage so far.

    As for the LA Olympics ceremony being the "the best ever" well that's a bit presumptuous. The US has a lot of money and resources to mount these productions. It's the spirit of the games that really counts.

    I understand this Olympics has been very expensive for Greece to mount, but the people are thrilled to be the host country and are treating all visitors like royalty. I am sure the people who attend will remember this opening ceremony for sometime to come.

    Don't forget the Olympics orginated from Greece and were pretty simple to start with. Not the lavish productions we know.

    My "cap is off to Greece" - looks great.

  9. #9
    Champion Skater (Vicariously)
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    My random observations and comments....

    The coordinator of the greek olympics is really stunning, she reminds me of jackie kennedy.

    I'm not really impressed with the official outfits worn by the americans. They look a little too relaxed and a tad bit ghetto.

    I was just laughing with my parents about how weird and surreal the albertville ceremonies were... does anyone remember the really tall tower of people the made? I vaugely remember people being piled on top of each other wearing red spandex.

    We got takeout from a greek place for dinner... gyros, greek salad with tons o feta and lots of hummus!!! The place was packed with other people with the same idea.

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    Custom Title Mathman's Avatar
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    Was the LA Olympics the one that featured a few hundred Elvis impersonators? Hmm. Plato -- Elvis. Archimedes -- Elvis. Sophocles -- Elvis. Oh, well.

    I thought the Greek art figures were really cool, especially the prehistoric and archaic eras.

    Which, by the way Bob Costas and Katie Couric hardly said anything about. I agree with Mike about the Canadian coverage. They showed it live at 1:00, without commercials.

    I don't know where U.S. broadcasters get the idea that they are the show, rather than the show being the show. Very poor indeed. :\

    Mathman

    PS. I agreee with Liz about those hip-hip U.S. uniforms. I hope they are better in 2006.

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    On Edge Piel's Avatar
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    I loved the opening ceremonies. Great job Athens! The best part of these and any Olympics IMO is the look of pride on the Athlete's faces when they enter...all of that hope of what could be is just overwhelming.
    Last edited by Piel; 08-13-2004 at 10:57 PM.

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    bugs are smarter than we are bronxgirl's Avatar
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    I have to admit that I hope that New York doesn't get the 2012 bid. It would be nice to take the money that would be built for the sites, and use it to directlty upgrade the cities' infrastucture - why do we need the extra expense of the games to do this? I don't think too many of the site have recouped the money spent for the games for the buildings and security tabs. (JMHO)

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    Damn't, I missed them! Were they great? I'm glad that other people are Olympic-aholics as well. I can't get enough of the drama and the great, inspiring moments that you know you'll see. I can't wait for the gymnastics (and the swimming, diving, track events, etc.)!

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    Joey Votto Fangirl KwanFan1212's Avatar
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    My hat goes off to Athens for a great opening ceremony. It was enjoyable and I really liked the artsy stuff (being an artsy girl, I just appreciated the history because I had to study it during college!). I wasn't overall fond of the total US outfits (they all looked like they were going sailing IMO) but I loved their hats. I want one! Its like the beret that I never got from the SLC US team outfits, LOL :D

    And I've decided that I am going to not worry about the time issue with the Athens games. I let it bother me ALL through the Sydney games and it made them less enjoyable because I wasn't focused on the athletes, just on how much I hated not having it live. I'm just going to enjoy the events I get to see when I get to see them and try not to have a nervous breakdown waiting for the gymnastics results. At least Athens has one thing going for it that SLC did not have........LOTS OF SPOILERS!!! LOL

    Now, its time to rumble for the US gymnastics teams. It all starts tomorrow so GO TEAM USA!!!!!!! :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D

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    As for the LA Olympics ceremony being the "the best ever" well that's a bit presumptuous. The US has a lot of money and resources to mount these productions. It's the spirit of the games that really counts.
    The 1984 games were the ones when the Olympics almost died. They practically had to beg Los Angeles to take them and there was a lot of opposition to them. Peter Ueberoth had his dogs poisened and got death threats all the time he was trying to organize them. There was very little money available for the opening ceremonies and all the participants were volunteers. It was before the spectacle years that started with Barcelona. I guess you have to see them. They still give me goose bumps and bring me to tears.

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