2010 Winter Olympics Closing Ceremony
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2010 Winter Olympics Closing Ceremony

The closing ceremony of the 2010 Winter Olympics took place on February 28, 2010, beginning at 5:30 pm PST (01:30 UTC, March 1) at BC Place Stadium in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. It was the first Olympic Closing Ceremony held in an indoor venue since the 1984 Winter Olympics in Sarajevo.


The production's director David Atkins previously directed the Sydney 2000 Olympic and the 2006 Doha Asian Games ceremonies.[1] The choreographer for the finale was Jean Grand-Maître, artistic director of the Alberta Ballet.[2]

Pre-ceremony activities

A joke was made about the hydraulic system failure with the indoor cauldron in the opening ceremony. Electrical sparks, a fake chicken and feathers shot out of the hole where the fourth arm would have risen. After this, Québécois clown and mime Yves Dagenais, dressed in workmen's clothing, climbed out of the hole, plugged two long cords together, and pretended to pull the fourth pillar out as it emerged. Dagenais then "summoned" Catriona Le May Doan (who appeared from underneath the stage via an elevated trap door), holding a lit torch in her hand. She looked around, acting bewildered, and then saw Dagenais, and he happily presented to her the emerging fourth pillar. He then wiped his brow with a red handkerchief to signify a job well done and walked off the stage. After the pillar was in place, Le May Doan, who had been left out of the lighting of the cauldron in the opening ceremony because of the failure, saluted the audience by holding her torch in the air, walked over toward the pillar and was finally able to light the cauldron, to great fanfare from the audience. With the entire cauldron lit, Le May Doan saluted the audience again and then descended back underneath the stage.[3][4][5]

A mass of white-clad high school students with snowboards flocked out and surrounded the cauldron while the band Inward Eye gave a performance, with the Vancouver Youth Symphony Orchestra behind them. This took place during the countdown, which was followed by the release of fireworks in BC Place. After the countdown and fireworks, the anthem cast created the words Strong and Free followed by a maple leaf and then a circle (called the Death Star by the Anthem Cast) surrounding the cauldron to welcome the official party. After O Canada was sung, the cast did a droplet formation before creating a snowflake, a heart, and a peace sign before exploding up the voms.

Chief Leonard Andrew of the Lil'wat, Chief Ernie Campbell of the Musqueam, Chief Bill Williams of the Squamish, and Chief Justin George of the Tsleil-Waututh were welcomed. Stephen Harper, the Prime Minister of Canada and IOC president Jacques Rogge were then introduced.

National anthem

A bilingual rendition of the Canadian national anthem O Canada was sung by the Anthem Cast, The Vancouver Youth Symphony Orchestra, & Inward Eye.

Entrance of the flag bearers and the parade of the athletes

The flag bearers for the participating nations then entered the stadium at the same time, making a ring around the Olympic Cauldron. Following tradition, the athletes entered the stadium in no particular order to parade around the Olympic Cauldron at the centre of the stadium, before filing out to take their reserved front row seats.

Flag bearers

Musical portion

Three musicians, Eva Avila, Nikki Yanofsky, and Derek Miller, each on an elevated, lighted column that rose out of the stadium floor, sang the song "Let's Have a Party" in French and English.

Medal ceremony

As with tradition, the medals to one of the marquee events of the Winter Games - men's 50 km classical cross-country - were presented during the closing ceremony. The race was held earlier that day in Whistler Olympic Park. The medals were given by Gerhard Heiberg, IOC member for Norway and member of the Executive Commission of the IOC. The flowers were given by the Ski Federation.


Two new members of the IOC, Angela Ruggiero (USA) and Adam Pengilly (UK), were announced.[6] The volunteers who made the games possible were also recognized.

Greek national anthem

A Royal Canadian Mounted Police honour guard raised the Greek national flag while the Greek national anthem was then sung by Greek-Canadian opera singer Ariana Chris.

Olympic Hymn

Canadian tenor Ben Heppner, born in British Columbia and singer of O Canada at the 2006 closing ceremony in Torino, then sang the Olympic Hymn, mixing English and French, while an RCMP honour guard lowered the Olympic flag. This flag was raised again in London on July 27, 2012 during the opening ceremonies of the 2012 Summer Olympics.

Handover of the Olympic flag

The Olympic flag was handed off by Gregor Robertson, the mayor of Vancouver, to Jacques Rogge, the President of the IOC. It was then handed off to the mayor of Sochi, Anatoly Pakhomov, whose city will host the 2014 Winter Olympics. The flag arrived in Sochi at the end of March and was raised at that city's municipal building until the 2014 games.[7] During that time, the orchestra played an excerpt from the Olympic Fanfare and Theme by John Williams. Russian Armed Forces honor guards then entered the stadium, carrying the Russian Flag. They passed the flag to the honor guards of the RCMP. The flag was raised Russian national anthem was sung by the Moscow State Chamber Choir, conducted by Vladimir Minin.

Greetings from Sochi

A demonstration was then staged by the Russians to showcase the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. The segment featured Russian supermodel Natalia Vodianova in a video. Maria Guleghina[8] performed while riding on a special troika containing white neon horses,[9] the principal dancers of the Kirov, Bolshoi and Mariinsky ballets, 2006 Olympic champions Tatiana Navka and Roman Kostomarov ice dancing by the Black Sea,[10] giant zorbs rolling around the stage, the appearance of figure skaters Evgeni Plushenko and Irina Rodnina with ice hockey players Alexander Ovechkin and Vladislav Tretiak (four years later, Rodnina and Tretiak began to light the cauldron in Sochi), and a live orchestra performance playing in Red Square while being conducted, via satellite, by Valery Gergiev at BC Place.[11]

Games declared closed

The games were formally closed by International Olympic Committee President Jacques Rogge calling them "excellent and very friendly" in his tradition of assigning each games their own identity in closing comments. Rogge also addressed the tragic loss of Georgian luger Nodar Kumaritashvili, who died in an accident at the Whistler Sliding Centre on February 12, in his comments, stating his condolences for the country of Georgia, and that his memory "will always be with us."[12]John Furlong, chair of VANOC, also spoke.[4]

Neil Young sang "Long May You Run" while the Olympic flame was extinguished in both the indoor[3] and outdoor cauldrons. After both flames were extinguished, all four legs of the indoor cauldron descended to the ground.

Cultural section

William Shatner, Michael J. Fox and Catherine O'Hara came onto the stadium floor and delivered comedic monologues playing on stereotypes of Canadians. O'Hara's section involved the tendency of Canadians to be overly polite and apologetic. Shatner's section involved beer. Fox's section involved urban areas and terrain.

The theme of satirizing Canadian clichés[13] continued with Michael Bublé dressed as a Mountie performing "The Maple Leaf Forever" first straight, followed by four scantily clad singer/dancers dressed as Mounties stripping his Mountie uniform to reveal a tuxedo leading to a whimsical Vegas-style arrangement of the song as a procession of giant Mounties, dancing Mounties, hockey players, giant table hockey players wearing gold medals (as Canada won both the men's and women's tournaments), complete with a child dressed as a puck for said game, followed by voyageurs and lumberjacks in dancing canoes,[10] bare-midriff dancing and ceiling hung maple leaves, and last but not least, several giant inflatable beavers and flying moose. "The Maple Leaf Forever" was sung using a modern version rather than its traditional lyrics and was arranged in a medley with other pieces. Hockey Night in Canada's former, but still iconic, signature tune, "The Hockey Theme", was played during the giant-sized hockey match. The entrance of the voyageurs was accompanied by the traditional French-Canadian song "Envoyons d'l'avant nos gens" performed by La Bottine Souriante, while the cultural section ended with Bublé singing the last line of "O Canada". Audience members were provided with and encouraged to wear headgear fashioned into moose antlers.[13]

Concert section

Notable attendees

Aside from celebrities participating in the ceremony, mayors Robertson and Pakhomov, and members of the International Olympic Committee, the following notable people were in attendance:

The Canadian TV network CTV claimed that traditionally a senior government representative of the country hosting the next Winter Olympics is also present during the Closing Ceremony, but neither Russian President Dmitry Medvedev nor Prime Minister Vladimir Putin attended. CTV speculated that this was due to domestic discontent over their nation's performance in Vancouver.[17] In comparison, Canada's Governor General Michaëlle Jean had attended the Torino Olympics closing ceremony.


Television broadcast

Fireworks over BC Place during the closing ceremony

In Australia coverage was carried on the Nine Network and Foxtel.

In Canada, CTV, Omni Television, Rogers Sportsnet, TSN, RDS and V broadcast the ceremony live. However, there were lengthy commercial breaks during the broadcast, one of which excluded the entrance of the Canadian athletes when returning live. Furthermore, the Canadian broadcast also omitted the men's 50 km classical cross-country medal ceremony and the subsequent Norwegian national anthem. The broadcast was the second-most watched event in Canadian television history, with an estimated 24.5 million people watching some part of the ceremonies[18] (of a population of ~ 34 million).

In China, CCTV-1 and CCTV-5 broadcast the ceremony.

In Brazil, only Sportv broadcast the ceremony live. Rede Record and Record News broadcast the ceremony 90 minutes after its conclusion, in order not to interfere with its prime-time schedule.

In Germany, ZDF carried the closing ceremony. Because of the time difference, it was 3:30 clock in the morning.

In Hong Kong, Cable TV Hong Kong broadcast the Closing Ceremony.

In Mexico, XEIMT-TV Canal 22 broadcast the ceremony live.

In Norway, NRK broadcast the ceremony live.

In Russia, Russia 1 broadcast the ceremony live.

In the UK and Ireland, the BBC and British Eurosport broadcast the Closing Ceremony.

In the United States, NBC broadcast the Closing Ceremony with coverage starting at 7:00 pm EST. NBC abruptly ended Olympic coverage at 10:30 pm EST, to broadcast the debut of The Marriage Ref, and resumed at 11:35 pm EST after late local news.[19] This spawned outbursts from upset viewers, especially on Twitter.[20]


Sounds of Vancouver 2010: Closing Ceremony Commemorative Album
Sounds of Vancouver 2010 Closing Ceremony Commemorative Album.jpeg
Soundtrack album by
Various artists
ReleasedMarch 1, 2010
LabelEMI Music Canada
ProducerDavid Atkins
2010 Winter Olympics chronology
Sounds of Vancouver 2010: Opening Ceremony Commemorative Album
Sounds of Vancouver 2010: Closing Ceremony Commemorative Album

Sounds of Vancouver 2010: Closing Ceremony Commemorative Album (French: Musique de Vancouver 2010 : L'album commémoratif de la cérémonie de clôture des Jeux), the soundtrack for the closing ceremony, was released on the iTunes Store on March 1, 2010.[21] It charted at #17 on the Canadian Albums Chart. "Un peu plus haut, un peu plus loin", performed by Garou is the only track from the opening ceremony included.

1."Closing Ceremony Fanfare"The 2010 Vancouver Olympic Orchestra0:26
2."Strong & Free"The Cast of Closing Ceremonies of the 2010 Vancouver Olympic Games & The Vancouver Youth Symphony Orchestra2:37
3."O Canada (With Glowing Hearts)"The Vancouver Youth Symphony Orchestra & Inward Eye2:18
4."Olympic Fanfare and Theme"Massed Orchestras of the 2010 Vancouver Olympic Winter Games4:17
5."Entrance of the Athletes of the 2010 Olympic Winter Games"Massed Orchestras of the 2010 Vancouver Olympic Winter Games3:22
6."Let's Have a Party"Derek Miller, Eva Avila & Nikki Yanofsky3:17
7."Greek National Anthem"The Vancouver Youth Symphony Orchestra & Ariana Chris1:58
8."Olympic Anthem"Ben Heppner & The Vancouver Youth Symphony Orchestra3:24
9."Long May You Run"Neil Young3:57
10."The Maple Leaf Forever"Michael Bublé3:05
11."Made in Canada"La Bottine Souriante & The Vancouver 2010 Swing Orchestra7:18
12."Burn It to the Ground"Nickelback3:29
13."Girlfriend" (Radio Edit)Avril Lavigne3:36
16."Your Love Is a Lie"Simple Plan3:40
17."Wunderkind"Alanis Morissette5:16
18."Eye Know Something"k-os3:40
19."Un peu plus haut, un peu plus loin"Garou5:23
Charts (2010) Peak
Canadian Albums Chart 17

See also


  1. ^ "PIGI projection makes dazzling opening ceremony in Doha Asian Games". Xinhua. December 2, 2006.
  2. ^ "Winter Olympics 2010: The Greatest Closing Ceremonies of All Time-Since 1992". Wall Street Journal. February 28, 2010. Retrieved 2010.
  3. ^ a b Kines, Lindsay (March 1, 2010). ""These Games have lifted us up," Furlong tells Olympians". The Montreal Gazette. Archived from the original on 4 October 2012. Retrieved 2010.
  4. ^ a b Ogilvie, Clare; Inwood, Damian (March 1, 2010). "'A stronger, more united Canada'; We are 'more in love with our country, more connected,' says CEO". The Province. p. A8.
  5. ^ Donaldson, Amy (March 1, 2010). "2010 Winter Olympics: Closing ceremonies -- Light-hearted event brings Games to a close". Deseret News. Retrieved 2010.
  6. ^ Crary, David (February 28, 2010). "60,000 attend Winter Olympics closing ceremony". Yahoo! News. Associated Press. Retrieved .[dead link]
  7. ^ The Canadian Press (2010-02-28). "Olympic flag passed from Vancouver to Sochi, Russia, host of 2014 Games". Retrieved .[dead link]
  8. ^ "Visual act visualizes the Russian artistic teams visions at the closing ceremony!". Visual Act. Visual Act Scandinavia AB. Archived from the original on 21 August 2010. Retrieved 2016.
  9. ^ Patch, Nick (March 1, 2010). "Canucks show sense of humour at Games closing". Toronto Star. Canadian Press. Archived from the original on 7 March 2010. Retrieved 2010.
  10. ^ a b Kines, Lindsay (March 1, 2010). "Tragic start, triumphant end". The (Montreal) Gazette. Retrieved 2010.[permanent dead link]
  11. ^ "Pop-culture party not quite an Olympian effort. Sorry about that". Globe and Mail. March 1, 2010.
  12. ^ "Canadian pop stars highlight Olympic closing ceremonies" Archived March 2, 2010, at the Wayback Machine. BC Local News. February 28, 2010. Retrieved March 8, 2010.
  13. ^ a b Hume, Mark (March 1, 2010). "Canada lightens up with moose-antlers sendoff". Globe and Mail. p. A9.
  14. ^ "2010 Olympics Closing Ceremony", Mahalo News.Article, March 18, 2010
  15. ^ "Obama will not attend Olympics". CanWest News Service. 3 February 2010. Archived from the original on 9 February 2010. Retrieved 2010.
  16. ^ Peterson, Anne M. (February 27, 2010). "Sebelius takes anti-obesity message to Olympics". Associated Press.
  17. ^ Weaver, John (February 27, 2010). "Russian leaders to miss Closing Ceremony". Agence France-Presse.
  18. ^ "Video: Golden memories from the 2010 Olympic Closing Ceremony". Edmontonjournal.com. Retrieved .
  19. ^ "Live Updates From Closing Ceremony". The New York Times. February 28, 2010. Archived from the original on 5 March 2010. Retrieved 2010.
  20. ^ Canadian Press (March 1, 2010). "US viewers tweet up a storm after NBC cuts Olympic closing ceremonies show". Winnipeg Free Press.
  21. ^ "Vancouver 2010 signs new licensees to create products, auction off memorabilia capturing memories of Games". Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics. 22 February 2010. Archived from the original on 11 March 2010. Retrieved 2010.

External links

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