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My thoughts on The Olympic opening ceremony.

Well first of all let’s get this out of the way. The Opening Ceremony of the London 2012 Olympics was the most amazing brilliant event I have ever seen in my life and best of all – I WAS THERE!

I’ve spent the last few days doing my best to work out why it was so brilliant and here’s what I believe to be true.

Not Being Beijing

The opening of Beijing was a spectacular show. Like Cirque du Soleil x six million. I remember the thrill of seeing 2008 drummers at the start and I remember the… hang on no I don’t remember much else.

It was brilliant but it was expected.

London on the other hand did the unexpected – for the whole show.

Magic Music

The soundtrack was amazing. Britpop, rock, dance and specially written pieces which stirred the heart. May favourite was Caliban’s Dream by Underworld. You can hear it here or do what I did buy it, download it and play it loud!

We can laugh at ourselves

‘Good evening Mr Bond’ was amazing, as was Chariots of Fire with Rowan Atkinson (Mr Bean). Danny Boyle had humour throughout and paid off big time.


When ‘Green and pleasant land’ turned into an industrial sprawl for the ‘Pandemonium’ section there were dozens of references to the amazing history of Britain. One thing you maybe didn’t see on the TV was the Jarrow Marchers. How many people would get that? Brilliant!!


Sooooo much emotion. Emeli Sandé singing Abide With Me while images were shown of those who wanted to remember was incredible. Especially when a picture of my Dad, who died last year, appeared.

Lighting the Olympic Flame

There is so much hype around this part of the ceremony and so many rumours of how it would be done the excitement was heightened to fever pitch. My favourite rumour was that David Beckham would be kicking a flaming football in the style of the archer at Barcelona.

Bringing together every nation and lighting the flame by future athletes nominated by our greats was perfect.

Many Americans didn’t get it

Sorry my friends in the USA but I had to laugh at some of the tweets you sent afterwards. Of course you didn’t get it; it featured history, culture and self-deprecation! You weren’t meant to get it!

Seriously though you really can’t please all the people all the time, the fact that 98% of the world’s population did get it speaks volumes.


I set a goal seven years ago that I would be at the Opening Ceremony of the 2012 Olympics. I even put in my diary ‘NO BOOKINGS TODAY – I WILL BE THERE!’ I didn’t get tickets in the original draw so I had to work hard to achieve my goal. I’ll not bore you with the details of how I managed to get my tickets (it’s the last post!); but I didn’t pay over the odds and didn’t use corporate sponsorship. And our tickets were in the 2nd row!

My other goal was to go to the Mens 100m final. Too much…?

See you there on Sunday!