The start of the 2016 Olympics is finally here! Athletes from all over the world have gathered in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and the games will officially be underway after the Opening Ceremony on Aug. 5. Find out everything you can expect from the first big night here!
1. The teams will enter in alphabetical order
The Parade of Nations is the most anticipated part of the Opening Ceremony, and involves all the athletes and coaches, from every country, marching into an arena to begin their Olympic journey. The countries will parade in in alphabetical order, with the home country, Brazil, walking in last. With the U.S. alone having more than 555 athletes in attendance, it’s definitely a pretty long experience!
2. Rehearsals started MONTHS ago
More than 6,000 volunteers are expected to dance throughout the opening ceremony, and they began practicing with choreographer Deborah Colker back in May! Anitta, Caetano Veloso and Gilberto Gil are performing during the event.
3. It will air on a delay in the U.S.
Brazil is only one hour ahead of the United States, but while the ceremony will begin at 7 p.m. ET in real-time, it won’t air until an hour later, at 8 p.m. ET, on NBC. That means the west coast will have a four hour delay!
4. Doves will be released…in a creative way
For decades, birds were released as a “sign of peace and freedom” during the Opening Ceremony, but things got messy in 1988, when one of the animals sat on top of the Olympic cauldron as it was lit. After that, the birds were released way before the cauldron was lit, but these days, the organizers have come up with more creative and safe ways to get this symbolization across. For example, at the 2012 London Games, bicyclists wearing light-up dove costumes entered the arena and pedaled around in formation. We can’t wait to see what they come up with this year!
5. They’re taking place at Marcana Stadium
Marcana Stadium underwent a huge reconstruction project to host the 2016 Olympic Games, as well as the 2014 World Cup. The arena was originally two-tiered, but has been upgraded to a one-level seating bowl with a roof that protects 95% of the seats inside. Guess there’s no concern about rain!
HollywoodLifers, are you excited for the Olympics? Did anything you learned about the opening ceremony surprise you?