Theme – A History of Russia
A few pictures for you to enjoy -
International Olympic Committee president Thomas Bach (left) and Russian president Vladimir Putin (right) wave to the crowd during the opening ceremony for the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games at Fisht Olympic Stadium. (Robert Deutsch, USA TODAY Sports)
Alina Kabaeva, left, receives the torch from Alexandr Karelin during Opening Ceremony during the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games . Mandatory Credit: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports
Feb 7, 2014; Sochi, RUSSIA; during the opening ceremony for the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games at Fisht Olympic Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports
Julya Glubokaya of Russia watches opening ceremonies for the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympic Games on a video screen at a live site in the mountain cluster. (Guy Rhodes, USA TODAY Sports)
The brand-new alpine resort village of Rosa Khutor had tunnel vision Friday night. A large crowd gathered in the town square to watch the opening ceremony on a giant screen. Away from the square, people watched in their hotel rooms and in restaurants and bars.
If you wanted solitude at the Olympics, this was the time. The pedestrian paths on both sides of the river that runs through the heart of the village were practically empty. Two Russian policemen strolled through a normally busy section of the village with nothing to observe or worry about.
The TV commentary from the broadcast of the ceremonies echoed through back streets like the sound of a World Cup soccer game wafting down an empty boulevard in Madrid.
(Credit: Jerry Lai, USA TODAY Sports) – Opera diva Anna Netrebko’s version of the Olympic anthem - ”stunningly beautiful”.
A general view of the Olympic Park and Olympic cauldron before the opening ceremony for the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games at Fisht Olympic Stadium.(Jeff Swinger, USA TODAY Sports)
A celebration of Russia’s history quickly transition to the organization of the army under Peter the Great to a scene from Leo Tolstoy’s “War and Peace.” The 300 soldiers marched in formation as ballet stars streamed to the center of the floor.
With the rise and fall of “Krasnaya Palatka” and “Red Marquee” by Russian composer Aleksander Sergeyevich, a beautiful ballroom scene played out under massive columns risen up from the floor. It was magnificent and moving to watch, and thoroughly Russian.
Some of Russia’s most well-known ballerinas played roles in the performance, including Svetlana Zakharova, Vladimir Vasiliev, Danila Korusntsev, Alexander Petukov and Ivan Vasiliev.
Mascots! Super cute bear, bunny and snow leopard. Right now, they’re on skis, skates and snowboard. The bear’s short is better than Jeremy Abbott’s so far.
An air of giddy, it’s-finally-here excitement spiked the air in the town square at Rosa Khutor, an assemblage of new hotels and high-end stores in the valley below the mountain venues of the Sochi Games. The opening ceremony played out on a large screen and hundreds stood and watched, stretching across a bridge over the river that bisects the newly built village.
One pig-tailed mother in a white winter coat pushed her baby carriage back and forth in rhythmic time to the operatic opening music, a large Russian flag draped over top of the dancing stroller. Children in one-piece snowsuits and pom-pom-topped knit caps waved their miniature Russian flags. The crowd burst into laughter when the screen filled with the image of the Bermuda delegation marching in their red Bermuda shorts. And stern-faced military figures stood silent sentry in their tall fur hats with baggy pants stuffed into their high black boots, as if characters from Dr. Zhivago.
Christmas in February! Russian parading around stadium dressed as Santa! Ralph Lauren, you’ve just been vindicated. Parade is over. Let the fun begin, after the speeches that is.
A packed crowd showed its support for the Russian delegation, the largest at these Games with 270 athletes.The most deafening noise of the night came as the crowed stood and cheered while the techno music playing throughout the night blasted a heavy bass.
Jamaican flag bearer Marvin Dixon leads his country’s Olympic team onto the stage during the opening ceremony for the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games at Fisht Olympic Stadium. (Robert Hanashiro, USA TODAY Sports)
Jamaica — we have a bobsled team! The Jamaican team received loud cheers from the crowd as they walked in.
As Lubov, our hero girl, floated above the floor, a dreamscape of Russia drifted past her moving across the arced roof of Fisht Stadium. In a majestic scene, fake snow fell from the roof as ethereal music played.
Putting on an event the size of the Olympic opening ceremonies is herculean and comes with impressive stats. The facts and figures that stand out: – 10,000 Russians who auditioned for the opening and closing ceremonies, many to “Gangnam Style,” the most popular song during the auditions. Masha and Olga were the most popular female names of those who auditioned, and it was Sasha and Pasha for the guys. – 500 gymnasts wearing costumes that will represent the different regions and ethnicities of Russia during the “Voices of Russia” segment – 240 athlete marshals with LED elements of their red, white and blue costumes to create the Russian flag. – 3.8-kilometer track in the roof that will fly 80 scenic elements – 9,223 people required to stage the opening ceremony
The ceremony started off with a video highlighting Russia’s great contributions to society and then started to follow a young child on a journey through the vast country. 500 castmembers, representing many different ethnic groups sang to start the show.
Christine Brennan: I was very surprised to see the same kind of security coming into the Olympic Stadium for the Opening Ceremony as I’ve seen all week here. Nothing different or special. Credential screened, water bottles allowed. Who expected that? Salt Lake City, Athens, London — all armed camps. But not Sochi. Talk about your sports upsets.
It took three hours to enter the Opening Ceremony in Salt Lake City. It took one hour in Vancouver. It took 30 seconds here.
With the parade of nations over, the program saluting Russian history has begun.
Performers wearing lighted outfits during the Dove of Peace segment of the opening ceremony for the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games at Fisht Olympic Stadium. (Robert Hanashiro, USA TODAY Sports)
Russian president Vladimir Putin officially opened the games, and then a decidedly Russian twist was put on the traditional dove release. With Tchaikovsky’s “Swan Lake” playing, ballet dancers wearing glow-in-the-dark costumes behaved as doves, spinning and moving to the music until their formation was a dove outline.
credit: http://q.usatoday.com/2014/02/07/sochi-olympics-opening-ceremony/ plus google
The corporate media have attempted to make this event took bad but after poking around the net, looking at images, and reading tweets from Americans etc. who are there – the news appears to be all good - the opening ceremonies was “spectacular”! Even some journalists are reporting that accomodations aren’t as bad as being reported, in fact, from what many say the rooms are very hi-tech. Their security appears to be more relaxed than here (MC->that wouldn’t be difficult) with little waiting time for entry, and the added bonus of bottles of water permitted etc.
All in all a great first day for the Sochi games. Congratulations to the Russian people, and good luck in the games – that been said…
USA! USA! USA!
Now I’m off to watch it for myself…
Video: Pics of the Sochi area which looks beautiful – I skimmed and turned down the sound.
The Russians know show-biz, a very impressive theatrical performance w/ fantastic technology. And loved the fact they included Christianity which is heart-warming for those of the faith.
Later reflection – The Russian authorities told us at the end of the 2010 Vancouver Winter Games that they intended to present to the world the best of Russian culture. They succeeded - they presented ballet, classical music, and culture to the world – something that should humiliate the decadent west – if they have the insight to realize it. Also didn’t see any illuminati influences, thereagain I’m not an expert, though it would be unexpected since the production hi-lighted their Christian roots for all to see – unlike the EU who didn’t even mention the word Christian (let alone roots) in their constitution, and lest we forget, the London (illuminati) Games, which did an insulting mock-up of Christian nuns. For shame…