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Asia Today ISSN 1861-4604 Monday, May 21, 2018

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Olympic Opening ceremony emphasizes whimsy over solemnity

In departure from Beijing, London organizers keep the mood light

Share on Facebook July 28, 2012, Reporter : chicagotribune.com, Reader : 493

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LONDON — In a city that knows how to do ceremony — from hoary rituals formalized in the Middle Ages to celebrating the Queen's Diamond Jubilee last month partly through the Twitter feed @BritishMonarchy — an atmosphere of whimsy and party won out over pomp and circumstance during an Olympic opening ceremony that allowed an economically beleaguered Britain to pat itself on the back.

Starting from his conviction that Britain "rebooted human existence" with the Industrial Revolution, director Danny Boyle called the entertainment piece of the nearly four-hour ceremony Friday night a "celebration of the creativity, exuberance and, above all, the generosity of the British people."

It was in the spirit of such generosity that the organizers chose not a single renowned Olympian to light the cauldron that will burn until Aug. 12 but seven young athletes who embody the London Games' idealistic motto and hope to "inspire a generation."   By Philip Hersh, Tribune Olympic Bureau yesmore...

 

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