In the days leading up to the opening ceremonies of the Winter Olympics in Vancouver there was a bit of speculation in the media as to what direction the event would take. Because the last games in Bejing were so over the top in terms of special effects and mega spending people wondered what Vancouver would do with much less of a budget
For me, the Canadians came up with the perfect response, a ceremony that combined the required level of effects with a level of stunning simplicity that placed substance over style and reminded me why I have always had a great deal of affinity for the people of my neighbor to the North.
A perfect example came when Thomas Saulgrain danced both on the ground and in the air to the strains of Both Sides Now by Canadian native Joni Mitchell. There was, of course, a certain technical aspect to the wires needed to carry him into the air but that was merely a means to an end. His performance was perhaps one of the most visually stunning and purely beautiful of any prior ceremony. Simple and elegant.
Even the one technical blunder during the lighting of the cauldron demonstrated the simple elegance of the planned event. Rather than try for some spectacular method of lighting like a flaming arrow they chose to go with one of the most brilliant concepts I’ve ever seen, having all four people light the flame.
All things considered it was a very Canadian kind of opening and for that we should all be grateful.
If you missed any of the ceremonies you can rewatch them at the NBC web site
Copyright 2010 The Moderate Voice