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Asiad opening ceremony keeps the burning secret

[ 2010-11-09 13:48]     字号 [] [] []  
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Unlike most opening ceremonies of major events, which are kept under wraps until the last minute, much about the opening ceremony of the 16th Asian Games, which will open in Guangzhou on Friday, is known to the public after four rounds of dress rehearsals.

In contrast to the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games, when the organizers denounced the South Korean TV channel SBS for broadcasting an episode of the rehearsal ahead of the opening, Guangzhou's organizers have been prepared to open the ceremony to public exposure.

Chen Weiya, director-in-chief of the opening ceremony, said it was not a surprise to see the reports and blogs, many of which vividly described the performances and even published pictures, due to the openness of the site for the ceremony.

"It was possible to keep the dress rehearsal of the Beijing Olympics opening ceremony under wraps because the Bird's Nest (the National Stadium) was an enclosed stadium," said Chen, who was deputy director-in-chief of the opening ceremony of the Beijing Olympics.

"But Haixinsha Square (where the opening ceremony of the Asian Games will be held) is on an island of the Pearl River and is almost open-ended. So the residents can easily see the rehearsal from the buildings along the banks."

Haixinsha, meaning "sand in the heart of the river", is in the middle of the river and is surrounded by residential buildings and skyscrapers, including the 610-meter-high Guangzhou Tower.

According to local media reports, the one-hour performance prominently features the Lingnan culture, which is gentler and more romantic than the culture in North China.

"In the performance, we try to show the openness of Guangzhou. Meanwhile, we're trying to appear open about the opening ceremony towards the public, too," said the 54-year-old Chen. "We keep inviting the local residents to attend the rehearsals as a way to repay them. The opening ceremony and the Asian Games would be impossible without their support."

However, Chen was keen to keep secret the method to be used to light the torch at the opening.


(中国日报网英语点津 Helen 编辑)

Asiad opening ceremony keeps the burning secret

About the broadcaster:

Asiad opening ceremony keeps the burning secret

Lee Hannon is Chief Editor at China Daily with 15-years experience in print and broadcast journalism. Born in England, Lee has traveled extensively around the world as a journalist including four years as a senior editor in Los Angeles. He now lives in Beijing and is happy to move to China and join the China Daily team.