EU Athletics Indoor Championships Opening Ceremony

JAD Events
  • Client StarWorks production
  • Date 24-05-2016
DESCRIPTION & BRIEF

Opening ceremonies of athletic events are usual stadium-fillers and distinction of any sports major, and as such they are watched closely by fans worldwide.
 
After 37 years a major athletics championship returned to Prague, and our work was to prepare the opening ceremony to celebrate the return of athletics major to the heart of Europe. The objective was set to create symbolic and memorable spectacle that will hype up the audience before the games.
 
The unique factor of this event was that all of the props were custom made for the event, so they match the creative concept perfectly. Naturally, all other effects, such as animations for the LED projections and light design was also created just for the act.

Execution

The idea – celebrate the history of the athletics and the beauty of human body and spirit. The ceremony started with “Birth of the Titans”. As the goddess arrive, the torches are being lit on set and among the crowd. Followed by the lightshow and thunders, the rock begins to crack and sculptures came to life, hinting upcoming athletic disciplines. Thus the creation of the human, the center of next act. The Vitruvian man rolls on the set in a ring, the legendary DaVinci symbol. We video-mapped blood stream on naked bodies, focusing on beating heart to show the perfection of the human physiology. Animation symbolizing both body engine & the place of the event, Heart of Europe – Prague. The acrobats then broke into the demonstration of flexibility and control. The “Generation” show ended the voyage through athletics history with performers “passing the torch” onto children. As the cherry on top of the ceremony, we projected the national flags on 700m2 silk cloth, accompanied by aerialist in matching colors.

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Results

The 52 284 spectators that attended the championships in person and millions of fans reached by 28 international broadcasters. More than 60 performers appeared on the stage of championship during the 15-minute show,. The whole process of making from idea to execution took more than 2 months, but the trainings of performers went only for 2 weeks. After the acts all of decorations and props had to be removed from the stage in synchronized and hasty manner, creating act of its own. since the main athletic event, was taking place right where the show was happening. Everything was planned to the last minute and the whole crew attending the set was about 100 men.
 
The opening ceremony was received well by the audience, as well as the client. Since the goal wasn’t commercial, we aimed to create memorable and symbolical act, tying Czechs and Prague with international athletics community, so they will return happily to Czech Republic in upcoming championships.