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Winter Olympics Opening Ceremony

Winter Olympics Opening Ceremony

  • Premiered: 
    February 18, 1960
    (Click date to see TV listings for that day)

  • Network: CBS
  • Category: Series
  • Genre: Parade
  • Type: Live Action
  • Concept: 
    Opening ceremony for the Winter Olympics 
  • Subject Matter: Sports
  • Tags: Olympics

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Plot Synopsis

Each Winter Olympics officially begins with the Opening Ceremony of the Games of the Olympiad, and although it bore only the slightest resemblance to today's ceremonies, the first Olympics in 1896 in Athens featured an Opening Ceremony. By the 1920 Summer Games in Antwerp, most of the protocol of the Opening Ceremony had been established, but it wasn't until the 1980 Summer Olympics that the artistic program became such an integral part of the pomp and circumstance, when Moscow spared no expense, starting the current mega-ceremony trend. Each ceremony includes the following elements:
- the entry by the Head of State of the host country;
- the national anthem of the host country;
- the entry of the athletes into the stadium with their delegations (in alphabetical order,
except for Greece which goes first, and the host country which brings up the rear);
- the symbolic release of doves (a symbol of peace);
- the address by the Games Organizing Committee President;
- the speech by the IOC President;
- the declaration of the opening of the Games by the Head of State of the host country;
- the entry of the Olympic flag into the stadium;
- the Olympic anthem;
- the oath sworn by an athlete, an official from the host country and a coach (respect for the rules);
- the entrance of the flame and lighting of the cauldron (reference to the ancient Games);
- the artistic program.
The Opening Ceremony for the Winter Olympiad was first televised in the United States in 1960, when CBS broadcast the event on tape from Squaw Valley, showing a 30-minute special at 7:30pm ET/PT, featuring Vice President Richard M. Nixon welcoming more than 1,000 athletes from 34 nations. At the next Winter Olympics in Innsbruck in 1964, ABC aired a one-hour taped event at 10pm ET/PT, featuring the opening ceremony as well as a preview of the Games.
The 2022 Opening Ceremony, held at Beijing's National Stadium (aka The Bird's Nest) premieres live on Friday, February 4, 2022 from 6:30-9am ET/3:30-6am PT on NBC and Peacock, with Savannah Guthrie and Mike Tirico presiding over the festivities. Bobsledder Elana Meyers Taylor was elected flag-bearer by fellow Team USA, but she had to bow out because of COVID and was replaced by men's curling skip John Shuster and speed skater Brittany Bowe. NBC and Peacock then present enhanced primetime coverage of the opening ceremony from 8-11pm ET, with Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson narrating the opening film -- entitled "I Dare You" -- as Team USA walk in the Parade of Nations. The film tells the story of how young athletes dare to pursue the fastest, highest, most high-stakes events on snow and ice.