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baron-pierreIV

Ceremonies on UTube, Pt 2

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The Olympic ceremonies of today are strictly controlled and timed spectacles of choreography, display and suspense. Then the athletes roll out like some sort of drunken fashion parade of mostly bad apparel. They mostly mug for the cameras.

The Olympic ceremonies of the past were almost the opposite. Very little 'creative content' but the parade of athletes was a semi-militaristic march of precision, colour and style. They dressed and acted like they had great pride in being part of the team and representing their countries.

Starting with Moscow, the focus of modern ceremonies really changed. Who know what they will look like in another 30-40 years!

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Seguing into the following OC, both the People's Republic of China and Taiwan (Republic of China) did not participate in Montreal in what could've been the former's Olympic debut as such. Taiwan was told by Tradeau's Liberal Government before the Montreal Olympics they were not allowed to use the Republic of China name as Canada was, like with many Western nations during the 1970s, moving towards establishing diplomatic ties with the People's Republic of China and away from Taiwan, and the United Nations already installed PRC in all of its structures. Taiwan was told it were allowed to keep its flag and national anthem. But Taiwanese refused. Later that November, the IOC formally recognized China as the one, true China. Two years later in Nagoya, an agreement was reached there that's in effect since that has the People's Republic of China as China and Taiwan being referred to as Chinese Taipei in international sporting circles.

Vietnam was too busy reunifiying to think about Montreal.

What I brought out in the following here is CCTV's live broadcast of the 2008 Beijing Opening Ceremony that was shown at least on CCTV-1, CCTV-5, and CCTV HD that officially kickstarted its massive coverage. It's in 3 parts and I don't know who the CCTV hosts are in this who constantly speak and some would say would not shut up. We'll find out eventually. Too bad we don't get to see the exact CCTV 2008 Olympic intro that would start the coverage. It has bugs on the upper right corner indicating the present Beijing time along with the permanent CCTV logo at the exact opposite. There were clips of this broadcast a few months after the actual end of Beijing that made it onto YouTube but was eventually geo-blocked or pulled. Also, you get to see IOC President Dr. Rogge and then-Chinese President Hu Jintao along with members of the Chinese Communist Politburo appearing into the VIP area, serenaded by a miltary marching band, which the only place I saw them on YouTube was a brief BBC shot of them in their broadcast already in progress. Never shown on NBC. That countdown done with both Arabic and Chinese characters on those LED drums is IMO one of the better ones in the Opening Ceremonies. All this is nothing to you if you have the CCTV DVD of this and even the Cantonese version that I see come at times on eBay.

Part 1

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jthTzbOpul8

Part 2

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P_-CCRu19-k

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It was all so tame and modest back then. Now, if the collapsing roof was available then; wouldn't it have been grand if the curtain lifted and then the flame was lit at the cauldron on top of the leaning tower?? That would have been an incomparable lighting m.o.!!

I wouldn't be surprised, that if the roof was done and functional, they had an Opening ceremonies held towards night.

You'd have the couple go and light the central cauldron on the ground, in which at the same time the roof opens. Then a laser beam from the ground cauldron beams a visible laser to the inclined tower, lighting a cauldron on the top. Then a fireworks spectacular or the planes flying by. Echoing the beaming of the flame from Athens to Ottawa via satellite.

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I wouldn't be surprised, that if the roof was done and functional, they had an Opening ceremonies held towards night.

I doubt that. First because daylight opening ceremonies were still strongly in fashion back then (in fact, it took until 1992 before we saw the first Olympic opening ceremony ever taking place in pitch darkness, namely in Albertville) and secondly because your scenario would have been a bit too fancy for what was common as lighting mechanism until the 1970s: Namely simply dropping a torch into a cauldron, without much technological extravaganza.

Correction: "dipping", not "dropping"

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You should also not forget that the "flame transmission" from Athens to Ottawa by laser only was an illusion - I suppose it's not really possible to light a flame by laser, even on a shorter distance. And back then, people and especially the IOC probably weren't ready yet for a cauldron that wasn't lit by the actual flame but by an automatic lighter. So I doubt that they would have dared such an illusion at a time in front of millions of TV viewers when the Olympic opening ceremonies were still very traditional and protocolary. It's astonishing enough that they dared to use an artificial flame for the Canadian leg of the torch relay and at at the actual Games.

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I wouldn't be surprised, that if the roof was done and functional, they had an Opening ceremonies held towards night.

You'd have the couple go and light the central cauldron on the ground, in which at the same time the roof opens. Then a laser beam from the ground cauldron beams a visible laser to the inclined tower, lighting a cauldron on the top. Then a fireworks spectacular or the planes flying by. Echoing the beaming of the flame from Athens to Ottawa via satellite.

Don't rewrite my scenario for me. That's NOT how I might have done it.

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I doubt that. First because daylight opening ceremonies were still strongly in fashion back then (in fact, it took until 1992 before we saw the first Olympic opening ceremony ever taking place in pitch darkness, namely in Albertville) and secondly because your scenario would have been a bit too fancy for what was common as lighting mechanism until the 1970s: Namely simply dropping a torch into a cauldron, without much technological extravaganza.

"

Olympic ceremonies in TOTAL darkness did not really begin until Sydney. Albertville, Barcelona, Lillehammer, Atlanta and Nagano all began while there was still daylight...for at least the first 15-20 mins. For Albertville, the arrival of Mitterand & other VIPs, the pre-show...all happened with natural light. So by the turn of the century, the Olympics had gone to the Dark Side. B)

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The retractable roof was not needed for the 1976 Games as athletic competitions are supposed to happen in open air. So even if the tower had been completed for the Games, they wouldn't have even used the fabric roof during the Games and I'm even doubtful they would have even bothered to install it. The roof was designed for the Expos and the colder months, all of which fell outside of the Olympic timetable.

While it might be nice to think of fancier ceremonies for the Montreal Games under a completed Olympic complex, given the simple nature of Olympic ceremonies of the era, I just don't see that as having been in the cards. Montreal's Olympic Ceremonies were planned and executed as they unfolded regardless of Montreal's Olympic construction problems.

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Olympic ceremonies in TOTAL darkness did not really begin until Sydney. Albertville, Barcelona, Lillehammer, Atlanta and Nagano all began while there was still daylight...for at least the first 15-20 mins. For Albertville, the arrival of Mitterand & other VIPs, the pre-show...all happened with natural light. So by the turn of the century, the Olympics had gone to the Dark Side. B)

That was not what I meant. I was talking about Olympic opening ceremonies taking part in darkness for their most part. And in Sydney, the sky wasn't pitch black yet either when the opening ceremony started. They still had a small rest of daylight then:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5YBpR2tLAOI

In fact, I think that Salt Lake 2002 had the first Olympic opening ceremony ever taking place in total darkness. In terms of the Summer Games, Beijing 2008 had the first (and so far) only "pitch dark" opening ceremony.

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I'd call the Sydney opening done in all-darkness. It wasn't bright enough to allow for a fly-over as in previous Openings. The seemingly bright sky I think were just lights from the Olympic Park. Well, maybe we can ask Rols what the conditions actually were.

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I have to back up Olympian2004 on that - it was indeed, just, still light when the ceremony started.at 7pm (my, and it went to almost midnight, it sure was a looong ceremony). We went to daylight savings two months early for the games, and at the time sunset/dusk was between 7pm-7:30pm. If memory serves me correct, it was light for the horses and the welcome, and started to get proper dark at about the time of the Julie Anthony/Human Nature anthem.

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I have to back up Olympian2004 on that - it was indeed, just, still light when the ceremony started.at 7pm (my, and it went to almost midnight, it sure was a looong ceremony). We went to daylight savings two months early for the games, and at the time sunset/dusk was between 7pm-7:30pm. If memory serves me correct, it was light for the horses and the welcome, and started to get proper dark at about the time of the Julie Anthony/Human Nature anthem.

Dang! I really thought the IOC has officially moved to the Dark Side by 2000!!

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Additional evidence: When 7 started its live broadcast of the OC, which is in its entirety on the DVD set that I have, Sydney was still had some daylight when 7 first had its aerial shot of Stadium Australia immediately after the intro followed by footage of the warmup acts. Things didn't get officially started until the aerial shots of Sydney that were beamed worldwide on a helicopter going towards the stadium. Yet, it was still twilight and, even when the Snowy River horseriders came out, there was still barely descending daylight. But that's when it was all gone. So I side with Sir Rols and Olympian2004.

Already uploaded here but because of the fact that US audiences couldn't see it back then when it was geo-blocked. The ERT broadcast of the 2004 Athens Opening Ceremony with English subtitles that obviously taken from the Athens 2004 DVD set--you don't see the ET1, NET, and ET3 Olympic logos on the the upper left hand corner of the screen for the following video like there was on the simultaneous live broadcast on those three channels. Dimitris Chatzigeorgiou and Nikos Katsaros are the ERT hosts for this. There may be another or two on this, though. As I was watching this, I couldn't help but think about those two professing their love of Greek culture that inspired this ceremony when they discuss ancient and contemporary philosophers, thinkers, directors, songwriters, and musicians, name-dropping the actors in this--NBC didn't do that much. ERT did describe the developments on the field in a more poetic manner, connecting with the sea, the haertbeat, humanity, and the like. On the Parade of Nations, they do talk about the flagbearers and also for bigger nations legendary Olympians and the amount of medals a nation won. Doesn't really look like it was shown on TV with video cameras but rather resembled something used with 35mm movie cameras--as a DVD, the need was perhaps to make it like watching a movie.

Baron might not like the London Opening Ceremony that Danny Boyle was the boss of. But Hamish Hamilton and Done & Dusted were thrilled to be a part of this with all of the energy and how it turned out in the filming.

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I'm too damn lazy right now to link all of the Claude Simard Montreal 1976 video clips of both ceremonies. So allow me to link you with all of them from his channel on You Tube. Not entirely sure he's getting the hang of this. I recommend he contact Bryan Pinkston, as I did with another thread here just now on Past Bids, and make a fuller version of the Montreal Opening Ceremony with the Parade of Nations intact. Need to see if everything is still in proper sequence.

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A very, very rare find I just did. Twelve minutes excerpt from the opening ceremonies of the 1985 Universiade, which were celebrated at Kobe, Japan.

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/\/\ Thanks, Ike.

Cute; but clearly a junior copy of LA 1984. And very much of the "rush-out-the-troops-battle-formations" school. Which is why I am most non-supportive of Tokyo's bid to win 2020. They will produce BORING ceremonies for sure -- and with that "alien" stadium design of Zaha Hadid, the stadium will be the star of the show... NOT the show. Sigh. And after Rio, cross off 2020 as a flop year for Ceremonies...for sure.

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How on earth can you so confidently rule out Tokyo's potential ceremonies, 7 years from now?

Easy. I am clairvoyant. B)

Edited by baron-pierreIV

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^^ Baron, that was a ceremony on the 80's :lol: many sport ceremonies back in the days used those kind of performances. You can't say Japan 2020 ceremonies will be boring just because of something so old :P

Although I agree with you that it was clearly inspired on the musical band segment of LA'84. Btw that ceremony also had a stunt card section in the ground according to the rare pics i've seen of the ceremony. I hope the user post that segment in the future as well

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Anyway, i'm sure Japan will want to put a big show if they win, specially after a long time without hosting the games (and how the Nagano ceremonies got a mixed response), although i'm sure they will have a bit of solemnity feeling like Nagano/Beijing had.

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Anyway, i'm sure Japan will want to put a big show if they win, specially after a long time without hosting the games (and how the Nagano ceremonies got a mixed response), although i'm sure they will have a bit of solemnity feeling like Nagano/Beijing had.

I dunno. Their cultural linchpins are different. It did not improve with the WC 2002. The Opening there by Korea was a WTF is this??? Have not seen how Japan closed it in Yokohoma.

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I dunno. Their cultural linchpins are different. It did not improve with the WC 2002. The Opening there by Korea was a WTF is this??? Have not seen how Japan closed it in Yokohoma.

I only know that they had a huge inflated Fujiyama in the infield for the closing ceremony of the 2002 World Cup. And the same group of Korean and Japanese pop singers performed the sort-of theme song "Let's Get Together", like in the opening ceremony in Seoul. There once was a video of that performance on YouTube, I can't find it anymore.

Here's the song from the opening ceremony:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OqVNS9Khrjk

And here's at least an amateur video of parts of the closing ceremony:

Interesting that they had some sort of cauldron burning near Yokohama's Stadium (1:09-1:36). Never heard of it before. I'd like to know whether they built that especially for the World Cup or whether that was in place beforehand (and what purpose it served originally then). It was quite a looker, it wouldn't be that bad as cauldron for Tokyo 2020 either. ;)

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And regarding Japanese ceremonies in general: What they really do fantastically are fireworks. We have a "Japan day" every year in June in my almost-home city Düsseldorf and there they always display a fantastic Japanese firework in the evening. And the fireworks of Nagano's closing ceremony in 1998 are the most beautiful ones in Olympic history (in my view) to this day. Beijing tried hard to show everything it had in terms of pyrotechnics, but it was simply too much to be really enjoyable.

But even aside fireworks, I'm convinced that Tokyo could stage a magical and impressive opening ceremony - of course with Japanese traditions but also with typical Japanese technical gadgetry. ;) Nagano's opening ceremony was dull indeed, much too traditional and in parts kitschy ("When Children Rule The World"), lacking atmosphere anyway because it didn't take place in darkness, additionally under a grey dull winter sky. I don't think that Tokyo would choose the same concept, especially not after 22 years that brought many innovations in terms of opening ceremony staging.

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