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Opening Ceremony


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If by "action" you mean chaos, fine.

I'm well aware of Frankenstein. Some (minimal) past experience does not translate to a sure hand on a dramatically larger scale. Clearly.

So you're saying F&J were brilliant and it's all NBC's fault it sucked? Talk about a "London can do no wrong" attitude.

I've got a Master's in Shakespeare. Tempest connections in the OC are forced and tenuous at best and would be totally lost if not for Branagh's momentary Brunel cum Caliban.

London's OC was "the enemy of clarity, focus and organized thought." Finally we agree on something. It sounds as though you just said "Athens and Beijing did a such a beautiful job that we were left with no choice but to be totally haphazard and call it art while hoping no one would notice." According to you, the strategy paid off with most people. It did not work on me.

Best to start at the bottom, I think. Yes, Athens and Beijing did beautiful jobs- but they both, in their different ways (particularly the former), paid too much attention to doing a beautiful job for the TV. London was not "totally haphazard" but it was far less easy to present on TV than any previous ceremony, because it was genuinely a theatrical/stadium experience that was televised, rather than a television production which was performed before a live stadium audience.

That you have a Masters in Shakespeare surprises me greatly, as you seem to have huge difficulties with text interpretation. I don't have a Masters in anything, but I can easily see how The Tempest can be a really important key to the interpretation of the London OC (try, in particular, thinking about Britain- the spiritual nation rather than the archipelago- as Prospero).

Speaking of difficulties with text interpretation; I just described the over-ambition of F&J as "totally crazy" but I then argued, in response to your subsequent specific claim that "It was difficult to discern the storyline", that this was due to particular features of the TV presentation. In other words, I was very clearly not saying that "F&J were brilliant"- merely that the storyline, apart from the regrettable phonecall glitch, was not all that difficult to discern if you (a ) ignored the superfluous commentary- superfulous just as much on BBC as on NBC; and (b ) grasped the geography of the performance, which required more of an effort for TV viewers because for us, everything was happening in the same flat window.

As for "Some (minimal) past experience"- let's be clear about this. The only people who have past experience of stadium/TV shows are people who do stadium/TV shows. As a result, certain elements have become far too prevalent in stadium/TV shows, to the point of monotony (for me, the one great fault of Beijing was over-reliance on precision mass-movement). Some people seem to like the familiarity of such tropes, and enjoy simply spotting the different ways they are used, but many other people, like me, want to watch with no clue as to what will happen in the next 30 seconds. London achieved that in spades.

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With a more experienced hand other than Boyle, the evening could've been great art. As it was, it barely squeaked by in Boyle's hands.

Wonder how it would've worked if Kim Gavin did the Opening and Danny worked on the Closing.

have you seen the closing ceremonies? it had only 20% of the good bits ( kate bush, madness and eric idle) the rest were skip able.

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i still think london OC was a great triumph in the Olympic ceremonies. rather than just showing the same old presentation of happy people in the rows in weird oversize costumes while trying to be universal but ending up being obscure, it feature change, fear, dread, sadness, and excitement that all future ceremony should aspire to.

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Best to start at the bottom, I think. Yes, Athens and Beijing did beautiful jobs- but they both, in their different ways (particularly the former), paid too much attention to doing a beautiful job for the TV. London was not "totally haphazard" but it was far less easy to present on TV than any previous ceremony, because it was genuinely a theatrical/stadium experience that was televised, rather than a television production which was performed before a live stadium audience.

That you have a Masters in Shakespeare surprises me greatly, as you seem to have huge difficulties with text interpretation. I don't have a Masters in anything, but I can easily see how The Tempest can be a really important key to the interpretation of the London OC (try, in particular, thinking about Britain- the spiritual nation rather than the archipelago- as Prospero).

Speaking of difficulties with text interpretation; I just described the over-ambition of F&J as "totally crazy" but I then argued, in response to your subsequent specific claim that "It was difficult to discern the storyline", that this was due to particular features of the TV presentation. In other words, I was very clearly not saying that "F&J were brilliant"- merely that the storyline, apart from the regrettable phonecall glitch, was not all that difficult to discern if you (a ) ignored the superfluous commentary- superfulous just as much on BBC as on NBC; and (b ) grasped the geography of the performance, which required more of an effort for TV viewers because for us, everything was happening in the same flat window.

As for "Some (minimal) past experience"- let's be clear about this. The only people who have past experience of stadium/TV shows are people who do stadium/TV shows. As a result, certain elements have become far too prevalent in stadium/TV shows, to the point of monotony (for me, the one great fault of Beijing was over-reliance on precision mass-movement). Some people seem to like the familiarity of such tropes, and enjoy simply spotting the different ways they are used, but many other people, like me, want to watch with no clue as to what will happen in the next 30 seconds. London achieved that in spades.[/]

Or perhaps no clue as to what happened in the previous 30 seconds either.

JMark, you will sing the praises of London's OC with your dying breath, I am sure.

As for textual interpretation, communication is a two-way street. You seem to have problems of your own, not the least of which is beginning with a conclusion and then grasping at anything nearby to support it. Yes, I've earned a Master's degree in Shakespeare. I earned it in the UK and with honors. In fact, my final dissertation earned a 74 -- something that will be lost on others, but not you or those who have experienced British higher education. So lay off with the textual interpretation business, will ya'?

All that's really happening here is that you loved London's OC and I thought it was very disappointing.

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Of course, I have. Like others here, I surprisingly enjoyed it more, considering I really don't like rock acts.

That, for me, is one of the most fascinating aspects of this whole business. I share Illustrado's opinion (and actually prefer the Paralympic closing, despite not being Coldplay's biggest fan), but very large numbers of people agree with the Baron. There are obviously some wildly different ways of thinking here.

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That, for me, is one of the most fascinating aspects of this whole business. I share Illustrado's opinion (and actually prefer the Paralympic closing, despite not being Coldplay's biggest fan), but very large numbers of people agree with the Baron. There are obviously some wildly different ways of thinking here.

i for one think the para closding was one big disappointing coldplay concert. closing has always been one big letdown for me

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All that's really happening here is that you loved London's OC and I thought it was very disappointing.

No. What's happening is that I've tried to analyse what really happened, good or bad. Sometimes discussions help me to refine my thinking (for example, my realisation that the spatial limitation of the TV screen may seriously limit the ways multiple locations with concurrent action can be portrayed).

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  • 1 month later...

Opening Ceremony outfit on ebay:

http://www.ebay.nl/itm/2x-Official-London-2012-Olympics-Games-Opening-Ceremony-Complete-Custome-Outfit-/161147114039?pt=UK_Sports_Memorabilia_ET&hash=item25851dd237&_uhb=1

This FANTASTIC auction is for 2 complete customes.

CUSTOME 1: Worn for the London 2012 Olympic Games Opening Ceremony at the Olympic park in Stratford, London on the night of 27th July '12.

CUSTOME 2: Worn during the rehearsals

CUSTOME 1 includes:

-worn by an Olympic volunteer for the London 2012 Olympic Games Opening Ceremony-

-1 x pair of Troussers. Colour Navy. Size 32.

-1 x Shirt. Colour Cream. Size shown "S" BUT fits MEDIUM

-1 x Waistcoat. Colour Dark Brown. Size 38

-1 x Belt. Colour Brown. 43 inches long

1 x Cap. Colour Brown. Size Small

1 x pair Black Leather Gloves. Size Medium (8.5)

plus CUSTOME 2 includes:

(Worn during the rehearsals)

-Green Overall.

Long Inside Leg. 2 side pockets. Size Medium.

Full back elasticated waistband

-NOTE: ONE green button is missing. Lost during the rehearsals.

Customes has not been washed to maintain its full authenticity..

ALSO INCLUDED:

-1x Pair of skin coloured earphones used for our in ear monitors through which we were given directions for the performance.

-1 Ceremonies BID colour blue with the number on it

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 3 weeks later...

That book is exceedingly classy; proper old-fashioned craft binding, presumably deliberately aged.

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  • 2 weeks later...

yes i am. i trying downloading the other reader link but it does not comply with adobe. what should i use to read it

On investigation, it turns out that Adobe have a separate piece of software for use with e-reader formats such as epub. It's called Adobe Digital Editions, and, like Acrobat, the reader is a free download. Follow the download link from:

http://www.adobe.com/products/digitaleditions

Alternatively, because epub is an open format, there are all sorts of other freeware options for reading it, including browser add-ons.

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As a New Year bonus, I've added various bits and bobs from the past few months, such as the Mile End Park spiral mound, and several more spectator video references, to "By Strange Conveyance", my guide to the London 2012 Opening Ceremony.

http://www.pastpresented.ukart.com/marksnow/

Thanks! :)

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Ah yes, the one that was scheduled for publication at the worst possible time. As it's about a Pandemonium volunteer, it should dovetail nicely with Russell Moon's much earlier book about his experiences as a Green & Pleasant volunteer.

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Ah yes, the one that was scheduled for publication at the worst possible time. As it's about a Pandemonium volunteer, it should dovetail nicely with Russell Moon's much earlier book about his experiences as a Green & Pleasant volunteer.

Extracts from the book:

http://makingpandemonium.co.uk/makepan/index.php/extracts-from-the-book

I've ordered the book but the delivery is going to take some weeks. (Russell Moon's book is indeed a good read)

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Extracts from the book:

http://makingpandemonium.co.uk/makepan/index.php/extracts-from-the-book

I've ordered the book but the delivery is going to take some weeks. (Russell Moon's book is indeed a good read)

I cheated and got the ebook, direct from the publishers: http://www.troubador.co.uk/book_info.asp?bookid=2498

Wow, it's detailed! I'm nowhere near finished yet, but Nadeem gives a very clear picture of his experiences (both as an OC performer and, slightly backgrounded, as a games maker) including a sense of the massive underlying organisation / bureaucracy.

There are some nice colour pictures (in a separate section, rather than scattered), but it's mostly Nadeem's words, with occasional copies of official emails.

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