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I'm getting the steampunk vibe for part of the ceremony. Its having a revival. Sorry guys I still haven't figured how to put pics on here but here's a description from Wikipedia:-

Steampunk is a sub-genre of science fiction, fantasy, alternate history, and speculative fiction that came into prominence during the 1980s and early 1990s.[1] Steampunk involves a setting where steam power is still widely used—usually Victorian era Britain—that incorporates elements of either science fiction or fantasy. Works of steampunk often feature anachronistic technology or futuristic innovations as Victorians may have envisioned them, based on a Victorian perspective on fashion, culture, architectural style, art, etc. This technology may include such fictional machines as those found in the works of H. G. Wells and Jules Verne.

Other examples of steampunk contain alternative history-style presentations of such technology as lighter-than-air airships, analog computers, or such digital mechanical computers as Charles Babbage and Ada Lovelace's Analytical engine.

Various modern utilitarian objects have been modded by individual artisans into a pseudo-Victorian mechanical "steampunk" style, and a number of visual and musical artists have been described as steampunk.

http://en.m.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Steampunk&mobileaction=view_normal_site

I really like this steampunk idea. If this is the case, i dont mind this kind of Victorian reference because it is a cinematic fantasy kind of Victorian, not history class Victorian!

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it will be the most boring opening ceremony after atlanta :S

Fly over for a visit. There were some wonderful moments, but also quite a few disorganized looking head-scratchers. It wasn't terrible, but I have yet to speak to anyone on this side of the pond who

I will always see Beijings as a celebration that the Chinese beat their drums to the same beat and Londons a celebration that we each beat our drums to very different beats. Im certainly not trying

but sydney2000 arleady used steampunk idea..hurmm

Exactly. But London 2012 is using a lot of Sydney 2000 alumni (from help on its bid team) and templates, etc. Besides, Australia and the UK are Anglo countries, so obviously they have very similar historical trends and patterns.

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saw this on another forum - was sent out to West End Theatre agents and the like:

Hero- Lead (Male, 27 - 34)

OPENING CEREMONY

Hero - Lead

Male aged late 20’s to early 30’s. Excellent RP speaking voice. Has gravitas. An innovator and leader in his field. Must have a mid-Victorian period look. Artist will be required to recite a section from a piece of famous literature.

Height : Any

Ethnicity : Any

...... ...... ...... ...... ...... ......

Heroes- Ensemble (Male, 18 - 100)

Heroes – Ensemble

Male – various ages and ethnicities but must have a mid-Victorian period look. Will be required to give instruction during performance.

Height : Any

Ethnicity : Any

...... ...... ...... ...... ...... ......

DANCERS (Gender not specified, 18 - 100)

OPENING AND CLOSING CEREMONIES

Dancers

We require a large number of dancers with exceptional ability in all disciplines of tap, jazz, ballet, pointe, hip hop, swing and jive. The choreography in certain sections will be extremely demanding and will require a 100% physical fitness. All ethnicities required.

Height : Any

Ethnicity : Any

Specialist Skills

Male and female artists with circus skills.

Apologies - think that this has already been posted - doh!

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Hey no worries. It's a good bit of gossip so deserves a second post ;)

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No. U can NEVER totally remove a historical reference angle.

#1 - It shows what an old, mature civilization the Games are being hosted by this time. (Even tiny DOha, land of tribal goatsmen and camel-handlers, pulled out all the stops with a 'glorious' 1,001 Arabian Nights story in their Doha 2006 show.)

#2 - To get to your 'present and future,' you have to start with the past because it gives context to your "present/future." The complete story will always be past-present-future because that fulfills the basic tenets of telling a sound story: beginning, middle and end.

even tough Doha has no relation with 1001 nights ( just been arab). written in bagdad and caliphate era

well i wonder if london will use druids and stonhenge ?

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Opening ceremony for London 2012 will be shorter to attract athletes

London 2012 organisers have promised that the opening ceremony will be a speedier affair than at previous Games and offered participating athletes the option of leaving early to persuade more of them to attend. The move is intended to alleviate concerns about the amount of time athletes will have to spend in the stadium for the ceremony and the debilitating effects of doing so.

"We insisted the ceremony would not finish after midnight so that the athletes can go back to the Olympic Village quickly," said the IOC co-ordination commission chairman, Denis Oswald, at the conclusion of its latest three-day inspection visit.

"They can even leave the opening ceremony before the end if they wish to do so, so that as few athletes as possible will be prevented from participating in the opening ceremony, which is always a fantastic experience."

...

Oswald said the rules would ensure the opening ceremony, which is being overseen by the film director Danny Boyle and for which top-price tickets cost £2,012, would be open to as many athletes as possible.

"It's up to the athletes and the coaches who may have competition the next day. It's a choice you have to make but we would like to have an opening ceremony open to as many athletes as possible and that's why we insisted it be over by midnight at the latest."

The London 2012 organising committee chief executive, Paul Deighton, said the proximity of their accommodation to the stadium would also allow more athletes to take part. "The Athletes Village is extremely close to the Olympic Stadium. The issues about getting to and from it work very much in our favour," he said.

Deighton moved to quell fears that ticket holders would not be allowed entry to Olympic venues if they were not accompanied by the purchaser named on the tickets.

At City Hall and in the House of Lord's fears had been raised that, according to the ticketing terms and conditions, those holding the tickets would have to be accompanied by the person who bought them to gain entry. Deighton said that was not the case and that the names on the tickets were a protection against touts.

"The names on the tickets are a function of our determination to handle ticket touts. It's absolutely fine for people to give their tickets to friends and family," he said.

"It would not be OK for those friends and family to see those tickets touted. The person named on those tickets retains the responsibility for ensuring those tickets are not part of any illegal activity."

http://www.guardian.co.uk/sport/2011/oct/07/opening-ceremony-london-2012?newsfeed=true

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I wonder how that will work - giving the athletes the opportunity to leave early. We're so used to an infield packed with athletes as the cauldron is lit. Interesting to see what happens.

I have a lot of faith in Danny Boyle. I'm so glad LOCOG went with a single creative visionary instead of turning the concept over to a production company. Not that production companies aren't still involved, but it's so much better to have someone provide a single unifying vision. I like the Victorian angle too...

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I wonder how that will work - giving the athletes the opportunity to leave early. We're so used to an infield packed with athletes as the cauldron is lit. Interesting to see what happens.

It's a polite way of telling those athletes to just quit the Parade of Nations since they make it sooooooo boring and long!! Packed infield? Not really, it's deceiving. It just looks that way. And there have been tales of the infield (as in Athens and Beijing) smelling of urine and used condoms after the OC) because of these recalcitrant athletes. Not unless they make 2 or 3 Port-o-potties in the infield as part of the O.C. :blink:

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Giving the athletes the chance to leave early should work easily -- they have been doing exactly the same for the closing ceremonies in recent years. Do you remember how the infield became emptier and emptier at Athens's closing ceremony when they played that long and tedious concert with all those strange Greek songs?

But for the opening ceremony, I don't expect that many athletes to leave early. I mean, otherwise they would miss the lighting of the cauldron, which is the emotional climax for every spectator and thus probably also one of the climaxes (besides the parade of nations) for the athletes.

By the way: "The infield smelled of urine and used condoms after the OC" -- that was a good one, Baron. ;)

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  • 2 weeks later...

Answer at 1:25

Just rewatched this and I can see why Greece is in such dire financial straits. The excess and extravagance they went thru just to stage things right in this stadium.

First there was the underground stage excavated--perhaps $17 million for that--from the pilings and only used 2x (in the regular and Paralympic openings).

Then, the whole grass operation I estimate would've cost like $1.5 million--they had to import the right soil from Sicily to grow that grass. Just absolutely crazy. And now they won't take responsibility in tightening their belts? :blink:

No wonder the Greek civilization didn't last long.

Edited by baron-pierreIV
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Oh Baron,.. unsure.gif sometimes you write some pretty foolish things ... blink.gif and I try so hard to like you tongue.gif

What I wrote was true and it just seems so extravagant in my view, considering the financial straits your ex-country is in these days.

U will like me even less when u read my book because Athens 2004 isn't ranked very highly.

But u see, Savas, you seem to be acting exactly like your countrymen today--throwing temper tantrums because they won't accept that the easy days of yesterday are gone.

I don't need for you to like me. Sincere friendship is enough and it should flow both ways.

Edited by baron-pierreIV
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I'm always astonished what sour grapes the Greek members of the board can turn into when you criticise anything about their country. I just remember Pyrros, who carried the Olympic Torch in the 2004 relay, and got totally aggressive when you said something slightly critical about the Athens Games.

I think we should not really argue about the fact that Greece's financial situation would be considerably better now if the country hadn't hosted the 2004 Games. Of course the financial problems were created mainly elsewhere in the Greek budget and economy, but it's no miracle that such a huge, lavish sports event like the Olympic Games puts an even higher financial burden especially on such a small country.

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I think we should not really argue about the fact that Greece's financial situation would be considerably better now if the country hadn't hosted the 2004 Games

I'll bite. A one off cost which was said at the time to be equivilent to 5% of their annual economic spend. That's still a staggering statistic for a sports festival, but if we then spread it over 5 years we're talking about 1% of the total spend, and over 10 years (since the Euro has been around) 0.5% of Greece's outlay. So "considerably better", I don't think so.

The bailout figures being talked about and already having been handed out, the total debt the country is in, the failures in the country's tax system dwarf the Olympic spend.

Sure, the Olympics is perhaps the biggest symbol of Greece's profligate spending over the last decade, fuelled by low borrowing costs and consumer debt, but even without them Greece would still be a financial basketcase in 2011.

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I'll bite. A one off cost which was said at the time to be equivilent to 5% of their annual economic spend. That's still a staggering statistic for a sports festival, but if we then spread it over 5 years we're talking about 1% of the total spend, and over 10 years (since the Euro has been around) 0.5% of Greece's outlay. So "considerably better", I don't think so.

Yes, if you use percentages, it appears ridiculously little. But we're still talking about billions of euros! They could have used those billions to maybe scrap one of the many cutbacks they have to do right now. I think that this would be a considerable effect nonetheless.

And by the way, I didn't want to question in total whether it was a good decision for Greece to bid for and host the 2004 Games. I just wanted to point out that the hosting of the Games certainly wasn't helpful for the country's current financial situation.

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Yes, if you use percentages, it appears ridiculously little. But we're still talking about billions of euros! They could have used those billions to maybe scrap one of the many cutbacks they have to do right now. I think that this would be a considerable effect nonetheless.

And by the way, I didn't want to question in total whether it was a good decision for Greece to bid for and host the 2004 Games. I just wanted to point out that the hosting of the Games certainly wasn't helpful for the country's current financial situation.

But hindsight is a wonderful thing. Greece didn't stage the 2004 Olympics (actually won in 1997) with the foresight that the global economic crisis would emerge in 2008 and thus the games would be a financial burden to them. By definition, social extravagance runs counter to the austere financial measures most countries are having to implement now. But Greece, back in the day, was living the good life courtesy of the E.U without foresight to today's mess.

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But hindsight is a wonderful thing. Greece didn't stage the 2004 Olympics (actually won in 1997) with the foresight that the global economic crisis would emerge in 2008 and thus the games would be a financial burden to them. By definition, social extravagance runs counter to the austere financial measures most countries are having to implement now. But Greece, back in the day, was living the good life courtesy of the E.U without foresight to today's mess.

Oaky, you're sort of splitting hairs. Greece 1997-04 really took on quite a lot for a small country of 11 million people whose #1 earner are tourism dollars. And my God, for a country and civilization that's been around for centuries (the font of western civilization and democracy, etc.), you'd think they've learned by now.? You can go into debt for today's party but your descendants (or in this case, your neighbors) will somehow pay for it, one way or another. [it took Montreal and the people of Quebec 32 years to retire their 1976 Olympic debts; I think the people of Mexico's Distrito Federal are just about ready to retire their 1968 bills, and meanwhile the State of Jalisco is ready to launch into another set of debts for the on-going Guadalajara 2011 show. :wacko: ]

Similarly, the 2004 Olympics were a catalyst for today's financial mess. I mean, they were able to throw a $9 billion-dollar party which also meant...let's throw fiscal responsibility out the door. We got a lot of new things (honor, prestige, new subway, etc., etc....and tomorrow (or rather our....shhhhhhhh...allies) will work itself (or themselves) out. :rolleyes:

What they budgeted alone for the 2004 Ceremonies was incredible: $95 million!! From $27.5 million (for Sydney'00); $28 mil (for Salt Lake '02); then all of a sudden $95 million!! for Athens; which went down again to $35 million for Torino '06. That's what astounds me (and I LOVE extravagance in Ceremonies as most of you well know it :D ...but only if it's on the right-scale of things, and you can truly pay for it!! i.e., China, Doha, etc., those other foolish countries!)

Did they really have to run a Global Torch Relay? Did Papaioannou really have to fill a lake there and, like Beijing's underground stage, use it only 2 times? 11 million people are NOT exactly 1.3 billion. Oaky, if you'll finally read my book (and I did acknowledge your 'communist kitsch' term there..), you'll find out that the talent fees for Jack Morton and team for their Athens 2004 work are among the HIGHEST in history of Special Events...and ranks right up there with what the David Atkins team made with Doha 2006. But then, Doha is Doha. Greece only supplies some of the tankers to carry Doha and the Arabs' black gold in them. ;)

My whole point--and I won't beat a dead horse or camel anymore--is: accountability and living within your means. As a Scotsman, I think you'd be familiar with the concept? ;)

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Wow, lets see,...

@baron

I wrote "foolish things" because of your sarcasm of "No wonder the Greek civilization didn't last long" ... I don't think that this needs further explanation. I know that you dont need me to like you. I just tried to be humorous.

When it comes to the Athens Olympic Games, here is my opinion;

Was Greece ten years ago able financially to stage the Games? Maybe not. Was it the right thing to do? In my opinion yes. Why? Because the Olympic Games was the largest investment for Greece to undertake at this time. Massive infrastructure and modernisation projects were only possible because of the olympics. So it wasn't just a billion party as you describe it. And when it comes to the Opening Ceremony I also think it was the right decision to have this budged for D. Papaioannou as his avantgarde Ceremony achieved for the greek people and to million of people around the world to have a totally new view on greek civilization. It was an investment on culture. You never can spend enough on education and culture.

Was it partially an expression of a general mentality of "living over the own means"? Yes it was. But I will not accept that this is a greek idiosyncrasy. There is hardly a western nation that does live within its means. I also will not accept that Greece should be the black sheep. Could the US afford the Wars on Iraq and Afghanistan by a national dept of 5,415 billion? Can Germany afford a tax reduction by a national dept of 2,000 billion? Do you feel fully represented by the politics of your government Baron? Or the protesters of "Occupy Wall Street"? You see the protest on the news and you think that this speaks for a whole nation?

Does this means that Greece isn't responsible for its situation? Absolutely not. The greek people have a really hard time it this moment, the challenge is gigantic and the therapy extremely painful. It is more then normal that such a situation brings some massive reactions. You cant change a mentality and a political and economy system of the past 30 years over night. And I find it extremely unfair that no one recognizes that at this time the greek government and the greek people undertake such a massive effort, with all the internal reactions that this brings. Pointing with the finger, nasty, vicious comments and spitefulness dont contribute.

But because this is a really complicated issue and this is the wrong topic to have this discussion I will stop here. Apologies for going off topic.

rolleyes.gif

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But hindsight is a wonderful thing. Greece didn't stage the 2004 Olympics (actually won in 1997) with the foresight that the global economic crisis would emerge in 2008 and thus the games would be a financial burden to them. By definition, social extravagance runs counter to the austere financial measures most countries are having to implement now. But Greece, back in the day, was living the good life courtesy of the E.U without foresight to today's mess.

Oaky - you have summed up the situation perfectly - thank you

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Oaky, you're sort of splitting hairs. Greece 1997-04 really took on quite a lot for a small country of 11 million people whose #1 earner are tourism dollars.

It's not a case of splitting hairs. It's just that Greece was living the good life courtesy of the E.U. Let's be honest -- the Greeks benefitied greatly from that set-up. And naturally, greed is part of their nation (just like the U.S.A, U.K, France, Germany, China etc). Of course a smaller country like Greece, with its less robust economy will suffer when a global recession forces much of the other nations lending it cash --Germany in particular, to introduce more austerity measures.I think that all nations will be forced to develop an economy which is much more reasonable with regards to nature -- our excessive ways will have to stop as clearly, they are not sustainable.

My whole point--and I won't beat a dead horse or camel anymore--is: accountability and living within your means. As a Scotsman, I think you'd be familiar with the concept? ;)

You dirty wee racist sh*te Baron. I'd never expected such cultural stereotyping from you! :P lol.

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I'm always astonished what sour grapes the Greek members of the board can turn into when you criticise anything about their country. I just remember Pyrros, who carried the Olympic Torch in the 2004 relay, and got totally aggressive when you said something slightly critical about the Athens Games.

I could understand that. What got me about Pyrros was when only 10 minutes into the Beijing OC he'd already branded them "boring", then later accused anyone who liked the Beijing OC of just doing so to be anti-Greek.

Pity, Pyrros was one of the good members. Sad he hasn't surfaced since then.

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I think he was the type to join up one of those monasteries in Mount Athos.

I wonder if they have access to the internet in those monasteries.

Who needs the internet when you've got a hotline to the big man himself -- God?

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