The largest bell in Europe will sound for the start of a £27 million celebrating the best of British talent. NHS nurses and nearly 900 students from the local area will be part of the proceedings. Boyle, known for directing hits such as Slumdog Millionaire and Trainspotting is following in the footsteps of Zhang Yimou, the creator of the previous Opening Ceremony in Beiing 2008.
Just 6 months before the start of the Games, he announced that it takes inspiration from Shakespeare’s ‘The Tempest’ and that the focus would be “to recover a land from industrial legacy”. Nearly 1 billion people are projected to watch the show on July 27th, exactly 6 months away today. Steven Daldry, director of Billy Elliott, is in charge of the Opening and Closing Ceremonies for both Olympic and Paralympic ceremonies, claims that with the £81 million allotted will create “the best shows on Earth”.
The huge 27-tonne bell has been cast today at Whitechapel Foundry and will be inscribed with a quote from The Tempest “Be not afeard, the isle is full of noises.” Although he has not stated the actual meaning of the ‘Isles of Wonder’ theme, we at Habbox expect it is to do with the British Isles, how even though we are isolated from the rest of the world, we can still produce excellence.
Boyle claims he is following on from Yimou’s spectacular display in 2008, despite the fact that the Chinese had a much larger budget; “You’re standing on shoulders of giants – you cannot but live in the shadow of your predecessors.” A full dress rehearsal in the 80,000-strong stadium is to take place sometime in the future.
The show will involve:
- 15,000 volunteers
- 23,000 costumes and outfits
- 12 hours of music
- 60 musicians
- 15,000m2 of staging
- 13,000 props
- 1MW (1,000,000W) PA system with 500 speakers
At 21:00, the show will start, with the cast of 20,000 putting on the performance of their lives. However, 48 minutes before, 20:12BST, a preshow spectacular will be held to ready the public for the event. 1,650 children auditioned from 27 local schools, but only 900 will be acting, singing or dancing in the Opening and Closing Ceremonies. Real NHS nurses will play the leads, as Boyle states that “[the NHS] is unique about us… Along with our sense of humour”.
In total, it is expected that 4 billion people will see any one of the ceremonies for the Games, a figure corresponding to nearly £5 billion in airtime exposure, an astounding amount.
What do you think? Have you got tickets for the ceremony? Or will you be watching from your sofa? Leave your thoughts below!
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