Opening act after blues:Rio 2016


The global recession that Brazil has been suffering since the 1930s would certainly have a bearing on the Opening Ceremony here at the Maracana Stadium on Friday.In simple and plain words, don’t expect the special effects of Athens, the grandiosity of Beijing or the fusion of London. But certainly, the grand Samba dance or the amazing Amazon rainforest will be on display to kickstart the 31st Summer Games.In all probability, the Rio opening ceremony is going to break the recent tradition of spending huge sums of money on these extravaganza. Despite the current economic condition in Brazil, the show is likely to be a display of how good or modern Brazil has evolved in recent decades.Having said that, the details of the ceremony is still being kept under wraps. It is one of the best kept secrets of the Games along with who will light the cauldron, which is anyway not like the big structure with huge flames.There are talks that the real flame will only be accessible for Olympic Stadium ticket holders of about 4,800 people and 11,000 athletes only and a smaller copy is likely to be placed in a live site in central Rio for fans to take pictures.Rio has a reputation of being one of the most vibrant cities in the world for partying, and it would be for the first time that most of the Russian athletes would be watching it from their homes since the doping scandal broke out not long ago.The only worry, however, will be regarding the readiness of the facilities and withdrawal of top athletes due to Zika virus threat.The biggest talking point, which some three billion people will watch live on their television sets, will surely be the march past of some dozen refugee athletes walking under IOC flag.

Music and dance

Only the women’s football competition has begun before the big promised musical night in Rio.The Local Organizing Committee for Rio 2016 promises that it will just be one unforgettable night of Brazilian music and dance. A 12-year-old rapper along with Brazil’s most famous singers, Gilberto Gil and Caetano Veloso are simply going to be a treat to watch.Dancers from 12 samba schools are expected to enthrall the big crowd. “I hope that the opening ceremony will be a drug for depression in Brazil. Brazilians can look at it and say ‘we are a cool people, we are different ethnic groups, we live together, we never went to war, we are peaceful, we know how to enjoy life and we tend to be happy’,” was how Fernando Meirelles, one of the three creative directors for the ceremony described the Opening Ceremony.

Sachin, Sachin!

Last but not the least, Indian cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar has also reportedly landed in Rio on Wednesday to cheer the Indian Olympic contingent during the Games.This will be Tendulkar’s first visit to the Olympics. Tendulkar, during his visit, would also be meeting the Indian contingent to wish them well.

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