2010 Games Opening Ceremonies :: A Spectator's Angle

The 2010 Winter Olympic Opening Ceremonies took place friday night; what an exhilarating soiree filled with celebration, fanfare and reflection.  Vancouver was (and is) excited.  News reports confirmed over the course of the ceremonies, some 500 thousand people filled the streets of downtown Vancouver clad in red and white head-to-toe. I had the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity experience the Opening Ceremonies in person AND on home turf.  But, sitting in the crowd wasn't a sit-back-and-relax type of role.  The elated crowd was asked to participate in the show banging drums, creating the northern lights, illuminating 'fake' candles and donning light blue ponchos to create a canvas effect for the hundreds of images projected on to the 60,000 spectators.  Here are some before, during and after photos showing the perspective of a spectator:

2010 opening ceremonies crowd With security at an all-time high, getting into the Ceremonies resembled the security measures at an airport--and I was more than happy to oblige!

opening ceremonies before telecast As the crowds were pouring in.

ring jump A close-up of the set for the Olympic ring jump preformed in the Ceremonies' opening sequence.

stage At the opposite side of the stadium upon which the live band and singers like Sarah McLachlan performed.

blue ponchos 6:01pm. Everyone ready in their ponchos, anticipating the start of the big event.

mounties Canadian Mounties about to raise the flag.

4 ice totems Raising of the 4 'ice' totem poles.

totems welcoming world The totems stood with hands raised welcoming the world to Canada.

flags Flags projected onto the audience's ponchos.

canada & usa Canadian athletes making their debut to a crowd with deafening fanfare.

northern bear The giant sparkling bear signifying the mystery and allure of the Canadian North. Notice the numbers on the screen above, telling the crowd--each with different numbers on their 'norther lights'--to shine them in the background.

totem poles Incredible totem poles created with giant white sheets and projected graphics.

red skiers Suspended skiers and snowboarders during the show's Olympic + Winter sequence.

projected athletes Each sport projected onto the crowd.

kd lang The peaceful candle-effect created during KD Lang's Peace song.

lighting of cauldron The lighting of the cauldron.