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Let the Games Begin

The modern Olympics has three vital ceremonies: the opening, closing, and medal ceremonies. These ceremonies have evolved over time, but they are still based on the ceremonies held in the ancient Olympic Games.

The opening ceremonies of the Olympics officially mark the beginning of the Olympic Games. However, in the recent Olympic Games, some athletic competitions are held prior to the opening ceremonies because of the increasing number of teams that participate in the different sporting events.

The opening ceremonies typically commence with raising the host country’s national flag along with playing its national anthem. Afterwards, an artistic program prepared by the host is presented. This usually involves singing, dancing, and acting performances that showcase the host country’s culture, history, and other important features. During the artistic program, the current Olympic Motto is also presented.

In the 2008 Beijing Olympics, the opening ceremony featured performances that highlighted the ancient art and culture. The presentation aimed to show the world that China is becoming a world power that is set to bring great things to the world.

The 2012 London Olympics highlighted some of the country’s contributions to the world like the Industrial Revolution and the Beatles.

In the 2016 Rio Olympics, the opening ceremony was a celebration of Brazil’s distinct and awesome culture. It also featured a short reminder on the growing environmental problems, like climate change, that the world is experiencing.

After the artistic program is the Parade of Nations. During the Parade of Nations, some of the participating athletes of every country march into the stadium. A theme song chosen by the host country plays in the background as groups of athletes from their respective countries march one at a time. Each country’s delegation is led by the country’s flag and a sign with the country’s name on it. Traditionally, participating athletes from Greece enter first, followed by the countries arranged in alphabetical order. Delegates from the host country enter last.

The highlight of the opening ceremony is when the Olympic Torch is brought into the stadium. It is passed from one athlete to another during the torch relay until it reaches the last athlete, usually a representative of the host country, who is tasked to light the stadium’s cauldron. This is followed by a symbolic release of two doves that signifies peace. The release of the doves marks the end of the opening ceremony.

The significance of the opening ceremony of the Olympics goes deeper than just officially marking the beginning of the Olympic Games. It is also filled with expressions of culture and meaningful messages that the host country wants the world to know.

질문&어휘 문법TIPs 해석
questions

1. Why is the opening ceremony important for the host country?

2. What is usually included in the artistic program of the opening ceremony of the Olympics?

3. What are the other purposes of the opening ceremonies of the Olympics aside from marking the beginning of the event?

vocabularies

vital 필수적인/


evolve 진화하다/

anthem 단체에게 중요한 의미의 노래/

distinct 뚜렷한/

awesome 엄청난/

delegation 대표단/

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