Let’s travel in time to remember some of the best musical performances of the Olympics. The closing and opening ceremonies have featured some of the greatest concerts in history.
Today, the Olympics are not just about sports and competitions; they’re about who the athletes are and what each country represents. Each host country wants to show off the richness of its culture, food, and architecture and present itself as the best of the best. That means that each host country must outperform the previous one with the best opening and closing ceremonies. This makes each host country memorable and unique.
Some countries have invited musical icons to perform, and those ceremonies have undoubtably gone down in history. Here is a list of some of the shows we’ll never stop talking about.
Bringing Back Girl Power
This super famous girl band came together for the 2012 London Olympics. The moment Geri, Mel C, Mel B, Emma and Victoria stepped out of classic London taxis, everyone was shocked. The show included hits like “Wannabe” and “Spice Up Your Life.” This was one of the most anticipated band reunions in history.
Goodbye to A Legend
During the 2006 Turin Winter Olympics, legendary opera tenor Luciano Pavarotti gave one of the most powerful performances of his career. It was an emotional moment for the participants and attendees, and there wasn’t a dry eye in the stands. The most significant thing about this performance is that it was actually Pavarotti’s last.
The first Olympic Games of the new millennium were those of 2004 in Athens, Greece. The games returned to where they began, and for the opening ceremony Bjork composed “Oceania,” one of her most spectacular pieces. She sang in an avant-garde dress that displayed a map of the world in 3,000 meters of fabric.
The Best of Pop
The 2000 Sydney Olympics confirmed why Kylie Minogue is a pop legend. The Australian artist won over the audience by singing ABBA’s hit “Dancing Queen” and demonstrating her vocal ability. The singer wore a fantastical mauve look inspired by the Folies Bergère dancers.
Dancing in The Rain
Kygo and singer Julia Michaels set the rhythm of the closing ceremony of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. Their hit “Carry Me” managed to captivate the audience and get everyone dancing in the Maracana Stadium. The moment was made more magical when it started to rain, which gave a magical and euphoric touch to the presentation.
A Great Tribute
Stevie Wonder closed out the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games. After the unfortunate events at Centennial Olympic Park, the singer performed “Imagine” by John Lennon. This was an emotional tribute to the victims of the attack that reminded us of the true motive behind the Olympic Games: harmony.
These are just some of the musical performances that have taken place during the opening and closing ceremonies of the Olympic Games, both summer and winter. In addition to those that I already mentioned, other artists who have had the honor of being part of this celebration are Muse, Paul McCartney, Celine Dion, Freddie Mercury, and Nelly Furtado.
Throughout history, music has been a fundamental part of the Games. It is a universal language that speaks to the true goal of the Olympics: to bring people from all over the world together.