2012 Summer Olympics Opens in Britain with Royalty and Rock
by Denise Miller | WhenMagazine
Merry Old England knows how to put on a show! The Olympic Games Opening Ceremony was a $42 million extravaganza that included Queen Elizabeth II making an entrance with James Bond! A short film showed Daniel Craig as 007 driving to Buckingham Palace in a black London cab and, pursued by the Royal corgis, meeting the Queen, who played herself. “Good Evening, Mr. Bond,” she said. They were flying over London landmarks, her in a salmon colored dress, he dressed in his black Tuxedo when they appeared to leap into the sky over Olympic Park, At the same time, real skydivers appeared as the “James Bond” theme played. Moments later, The Queen walked in with Prince Philip to the roar of the crowd! Organizers said it is thought to be the first time she had ever acted on film. In the stadium, a children’s choir serenaded her with “God Save the Queen” and The British Royal Forces raised the Union Jack.
The show included rock music from many British artists. From a 1918 Broadway standard adopted by the West Hams football team to the Sex Pistols. Many artists were included in the performance. The Rolling Stones and the music of Queen among others had the crowd dancing. The finale of Sir Paul McCartney performing “Hey Jude” with the crowd singing along was icing on the cake! The evening also had fighter jets pass overhead streaming red, white and blue smoke over the stadium filled with over 60,000 people. 15,000 volunteers took part in the show, helping with special effects. There was also a high speed flyover of the river Thames as respect to the river and the city of London’s history. Part of the opening ceremony had children popping balloons, counting down from 10 to 1, and the appearance of Bradley Wiggins, the new Tour De France champion. Wiggins rang a 23 ton Olympic bell, its thunderous chimes a nod toEngland’s tradition of “pealing of the bells” to celebrate special events.
This is London’s third time as host of the Olympics. Seven teenage athletes were chosen for the great honor of igniting the Olympic Cauldron. Together they touched flaming torches to trumpet-like tubes that spread into a ring of fire. Fireworks erupted over the stadium to the music of Pink Floyd and then Paul McCartney closed the show with “Hey Jude”. There was a “Parade of Nations” that included many athletes from the 204 nations taking part in this years’ competition. Greece was in the lead, as spiritual home to the games. The team Great Britain was last as host and received thunderous applause as they marched to David Bowie’s song “Heroes”. Let the Games begin!
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