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Opening ceremony rehearsal awes spectators

Last Updated: Tuesday, February 9, 2010 | 10:07 AM PT

CBC News

Thousands of spectators got a sneak peak of the Olympics' opening ceremony in Vancouver at a dress rehearsal Monday night, but most were tight-lipped about what they saw.

The lively crowd streaming out of BC Place in downtown Vancouver after the rehearsal had been warned by Olympic organizers to keep the details of the performance secret, but most said it was spectacular.

Some did reveal the 2½-hour show featured Vancouver singer Sarah McLachan, performers flying through the air on harnesses, fiddlers and tap dancers. Others have said the inside of the 60,000-seat stadium has been transformed.

"We were sitting about 10 rows up. It was pretty impressive. It featured a bunch of different seasons, started with a bit of the native and aboriginal vibe of Canada, and then moved on…. I think it might give China a little run for their money," said one spectator, who preferred to remain anonymous, referring to the 2008 Beijing Summer Games.

The rehearsal didn't include the lighting of the torch, but last week, VANOC officials confirmed one performer was injured while performing some sort of skiing or snowboarding aerial manoeuvre inside the covered stadium.

Audience members hinted that part of the performance was back on track.

"A little top secret — a very cool snowboarding move — but you have to watch the opening ceremonies to see it," said another.

Most of the spectators at Monday night's rehearsal were the friends and family of performers, who were given tickets to distribute for the show.

The next rehearsal is on Wednesday when the stadium will be filled with thousands of Olympic volunteers given tickets last week.

The opening ceremonies go for real on Friday, starting at 6 p.m. PT. The Games will run from Feb. 12 to 28.

The nearby Cambie Street Bridge will be closed from noon to midnight on Wednesday and Friday, and for the closing ceremony on Feb. 28.

Read more: http://www.cbc.ca/canada/british-columbia/story/2010/02/09/bc-opening-ceremony-rehearsal.html#ixzz0f4QauoiK

Projecting The Ceremonies

February 9th, 2010 by Hannah Kinnersley

Technical and design teams working on the Olympic Ceremonies at BC Place stadium in Vancouver don’t have to contend with the weather. For the first time in history, they are being held indoors. But even though they won’t be battling the elements, the enclosed stadium presents a new set of problems. Patrice Bouqueniaux, of E/T/C/ London Paris, is doing the video systems design and controls for the Opening and Closing Ceremonies, twelve Victory Ceremonies, and the Opening Ceremony for the Paralympics which take place after the Winter Olympics in March, says the stadium makes the project “much more challenging because there is not a fixed roof.”

BC Place is the world’s largest air-supported domed stadium, and the roof comprises roughly 10 acres of woven fiberglass. Paris-based Bouqueniaux likens the roof to “a hot air balloon, supported by pressure, and it is always moving.”

Although the projections, which are thought to be a significant part of the Ceremonies’ design, are under wraps until after the Opening Ceremony begins, Panasonic is the Official Audio Visual Worldwide Partner for the Olympics and have announced that they are supplying an ASTROVISION Large Screen Display System and RAMSA Audio Systems onsite. At BC Place, Panasonic has installed three LED video screens with a total display area of 2,615sq-ft.

We also hear that Solotech is supplying more than 60 Christie Digital Roadster HD projection systems for the Ceremonies. Video content is rumored to be coming from Australian company Spinifex Group, known for producing video content for giant sporting events like the 2007 Rugby World Cup, and we are betting that system design and control will be E/T/C/ Audiovisuel’s OnlyView in3D.

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What pees me off is the version of O Canada. Really pisses me off--totally unable to sing along. WTF is the point of having an anthem geared to singing along if some eejit's gonna re-arrange it into

But that should worry you because we all know from experience...... and bad experience at that......that canadian taste isn't globa taste.

A bit underwhelmed with the video but am still optimistic how it all goes together. All this talk about having less performers than beijing, vancouver compenated with the projections. Take that away

BTW, I'm getting conflicting numbers...some sources have the opening at 2.5 hours while others at 3 hours?

I think 2.5 is a generous estimate for content length while 3 hours seems more like a realistic estimate for broadcast length.

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Secrets of the opening ceremonies: Insiders say the show will impress

Published: February 09, 2010 12:00 PM

Updated: February 09, 2010 12:26 PM

Friday night's Olympic opening ceremonies will be spectacular and very Canadian, say observers who witnessed the dress rehearsal Monday night.

A piano-playing Sarah McLachlan will have a starring role.

But aboriginal performances will dominate the night.

"They're fantastic – I would say half of it is aboriginal," one spectator from Surrey told Black Press. "There are fantastic costumes and dancing."

Aerial acrobatics, some including skiers or snowboarders, will add to the wow factor.

"It's really good," said the observer, who was reluctant to tell all about the two-and-a-half-hour show but described some elements as thought-provoking.

"It's almost a Cirque du Soleil feel to some of it."

Audience members will be part of the performance, using torches at certain times.

A large centre installation will be able to transform into several different configurations, at times depicting oceans, forest and mountain vistas.

The stadium's interior will be ringed with flags and lights, projecting colours onto the floor.

Other special touches include falling snow and maple leaves to reflect changing seasons.

Not all the performers were there in person – there were some lip-synching stand-ins, including a performance of Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah."

Another observers said Montreal songstress Nikki Yanofsky sang the opening anthem.

The ceremonies will begin with the lengthy arrival of athletes from every competing country – with Team Canada entering the stadium last.

The lighting of the Olympic cauldron wasn't part of the dress rehearsal – secrets such as how it's lit and other surprises are being withheld for the actual night.

All will be revealed to the world starting at 6 p.m. Friday.

Those who went to the dress rehearsal waited more than an hour to clear security, even though B.C. Place was only half full.

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Is 'just the right amount' of Aboriginal content for Vancouverites & people from BC 'too much' for people from the rest of the world? THAT's what worries me. I'm not from Vancouver / BC so I don't have the same mindset when it comes to that issue.... so the real audience will be the 2 billion at home.

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Did you not read this part?

"They're fantastic – I would say half of it is aboriginal,"

It seems like an appropriate amount to me...it's quite similar to what Sydney had...

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Yes, I read it, but you must not have read my post. We (non-Vancouverites, people who don't live and breathe Aboriginal culture) don't know if that's 'too much'. 99% of the crowd that viewed the rehearsal were Vancouverites, who may be able to appreciate the traditional dances & songs more than we (the 'others') can.

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I'm sure the aboirginal stuff will be OK. Look at the 'aboriginal' desings and parts of Melbourne 2006 (and that wasn't done by Atkins but by Jack Morton); they were really quite impressive.

See, I'm thinking Vancouver 2010 will be closer to Melbourne '06 and Doha '06 than any other shows.

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I'm just picturing the Torino handover when those four first nations guys where welcoming the world with that little rock and how embarrassed I was, I just don't want a sequel.

That's what my worry is - I couldn't have been more embarrassed. Seriously. Celine Dion doesn't embarrass me as much as that did.

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I was so ashamed I wanted to move out of Canada, And as said earlier in the thread the First Nation hosts will welcome the world so im expecting a similar type thing for that portion of the ceremony.

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I'm just picturing the Torino handover when those four first nations guys where welcoming the world with that little rock and how embarrassed I was, I just don't want a sequel.

You're fooling yourself if you think that's going to happen again.

You will be amazed by what Vancouver will put on.

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If the ceremonies have the same Canadian taste the other elements of Vancouver 2010 have (torch, look, medals, podium, logo...) then I'm not worried at all. And so far, the aboriginal elements were done beautifully. 100% confident here.

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I'm sure the aboirginal stuff will be OK. Look at the 'aboriginal' desings and parts of Melbourne 2006 (and that wasn't done by Atkins but by Jack Morton); they were really quite impressive.

See, I'm thinking Vancouver 2010 will be closer to Melbourne '06 and Doha '06 than any other shows.

Agreed.

Melbourne 2006

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Doha 2006

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I'm sure there will be a good balance of aboriginal and other stuff (i think Sydney 2000 aboriginal parts were awesome). But i agree, it would be somewhat dissapointing if thats all they can offer.

Oh btw the fireworks shots are very poor so far, i'm glad to hear they didnt used all of that yesterday and we'll see the real fireworks this friday. So far the ceremony sounds awesome but i still dont know what to think about the guy who said it was even better than SLC2002..Salt Lake is one of my fave winter ceremonies (About kicking Torino's butt..i think he has a point there :lol: )

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I for one am hoping for plenty of aboriginal content - love Haida art in particular. There are beautiful things about that culture which I think we need to genuinely celebrate, and I think there are ways of doing it which don't feel forced or obligatory.

(Oh, and I'm a Torontonian, though currently living in UK, and wishing I were in Tofino or Ucluelet instead...)

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I for one am hoping for plenty of aboriginal content - love Haida art in particular. There are beautiful things about that culture which I think we need to genuinely celebrate, and I think there are ways of doing it which don't feel forced or obligatory.

(Oh, and I'm a Torontonian, though currently living in UK, and wishing I were in Tofino or Ucluelet instead...)

If they play out the Haida Creation Myth (symbolizing the world coming together), i'll be very happy.

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Also, thrilled to hear that both Joni and Leonard Cohen music may be part of the show.

As for Nikki Yanofsky, that kid has a bright future if she keeps her head on her shoulders. I saw at the Montreal Jazz Fest when she was just 12 and absolutely blew everyone away - mini Ella Fitzgerald is alive and well and living in Montreal.

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Nice use of tilt-shift

Aparently the ceremony director is Louis J. Horvitz, and he just did the Grammy Awards.

they got Lou Horvitz? Oh my, that'll be good. He also did the Academy Awards and was also involved with Atlanta's ceremonies.
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they got Lou Horvitz? Oh my, that'll be good. He also did the Academy Awards and was also involved with Atlanta's ceremonies.

read the wrong profile. he wasn't involved with atlanta. he also directed one of my favorite super bowl halftime shows U2 during super bowl xxxvi in new orleans.
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I was so ashamed I wanted to move out of Canada, And as said earlier in the thread the First Nation hosts will welcome the world so im expecting a similar type thing for that portion of the ceremony.

You are so ashamed that you wanted to move out of Canada? What was so shameful about it???

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Canadians sometimes sound way too critical about their creations/culture/production... The handover in 2006 was ok. You can't show a whole country with just an 8 minute presentation.

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