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VIDEO/ London Olympics Opening Ceremony

Watch the Video of highlights of the Opening Ceremony of the 2012 London Olympic Games, including Daniel Craig, Rowan Atkinson, and of course, the Queen herself.  

(Infophoto) (Infophoto)

The 2012 Olympic Games in London, the thirtieth Olympiad, opened Friday with a ceremony that was enjoyed around the world. The winner of this year’s Tour de France, Bradley Wiggins, started it off by ringing a bell. Numbered balloons burst during the countdown to the start of the celebration, with the burst of fireworks on the Five Rings, the symbol of the Olympics. The first segment showed the moments in British history from the Industrial Revolution to the First World War. It started with the representation of the British countryside, with characters dressed in clothing typical of the time. The first change is the arrival of Richard Trevithick, the inventor of the railway. Shortly after, the farmers begin to move from the countryside to cities.

The scenery begins to change, and the four smokestacks of the central English power plant appear, then the suffragettes (women in the early twentieth century who demonstrated to obtain the right to vote), followed by the Poppies (the rich who had to leave for the First World War) and finally the Wind Rush (400 Caribbeans who struggled to get into England). At the end of the segment, the scenery had completely changed from a rural landscape to an industrialized England without any green areas.

Next came a video that will be remembered by everyone. The protagonists were 007, or Daniel Craig, and the Queen. Craig went to the palace to escort Elizabeth II to the Olympic Stadium in London. The two go up in a helicopter and both the citizens and the statue of Winston Churchill, animated specially, greet the Monarch, who arrives at the stadium by jumping from the helicopter with Craig, using a parachute with the English coat of arms. Obviously this is a stuntman, and the Queen arrives at the Stadium with a salmon color dress, accompanied by her husband, Prince Philip, and taking a seat near Jacques Rogge, the President of Olympic Committee. Shortly after, the army, navy and air force carry in the British flag, which is hoisted during the singing of the anthem “God Save the Queen”.

Then the second segment, from WWII to the present day begins.  The theater company act out a hospital full of people, especially children, with books, pictures of the health service and the revival of literature for young people. The children, after being put to sleep, continue to read, but this time there are monsters like Cruella De Vil and the child kidnappers, creatures that represent the drastic change to much more grim literature. Only the arrival of a lot of Mary Poppinses is able to drive away the evil creatures and restore peace.

Then came another cult moment, starring Rowan Atkinson (Mr. Bean), playing Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with the London Symphony Orchestra playing Beethoven's Ninth Symphony. He suddenly falls asleep and dreams of running together with the British athletes of 1924. The actor cannot keep up and decides to use a taxi to get back to the front, tripping several athletes and winning the 200 meter race. Doing this, however, the actor interrupts the symphony, with Maestro Valery Gergiev scolding him to get him to start playing again. The actor performs, receiving applause from both the public and the musicians.

The beautiful torch was finally lit by seven young athletes, who each set fire to a copper petal. The copper petals then rose into the air to light the cauldron, causing an eruption of fireworks. With the opening ceremony behind them, it remains for the British athletes to do their country proud.