So years of planning, months of speculation and two weeks of programming that has never made me feel more lazy and unfit all boiled down to this, the closing ceremony. Though given the extensive musical element of the event, it was more like a festival with hundreds of people in themed tracksuits. It was a display that would warm even the deepest cockles of the most musically inept person’s heart, though I understand many of you were probably asleep, so let’s revise.
Rumours of Adele playing seem to be untrue, but it didn’t matter; Many esteemed individuals took the stage to articulate their Olympic experiences, why it was the best ever, etc etc, but the real action began with Madness, who started off the music for the night with their Open House, played from the back of a ute as they made their way around the arena. One crowd favourite to another followed, then the Household Division Ceremonial State Band did their own mash-up of Blur’s cult hit Parklife.
Then things went next level and the acts got bigger and bigger. The Pet Shop boys, live in the flesh, performed their Olympic rendition of West End Girls, though only briefly, and were soon ushered off stage to make way for some boy band called One Direction. Ray Davies from The Kinks saved the night with a performance of their 1960s London tribute tune Waterloo Sunset. What followed next seemed to be an unscheduled delay. Be it technical or human, Emile Sande was quick to pick up the mic and occupy the stirring crowd.
The delay was soon over and Elbow performed two of their greatest hits: Open Arms and One Day, while the athletes (almost forgot about them) began to pile in, circling the grounds for a universal victory lap. John Lennon joined in on the celebrations albeit from the big screen as the choir performed his anthem Imagine. As per the rumours, George Michael soon took the spotlight for a short but tasty tune Freedom. The LED lights set on every seat in the stadium made a pretty awe-inspiring backdrop for this one.
Ricky Wilson from The Kaiser Chiefs rocked up like a boss on a tricked-out scooter, performing The Who’s Pinball Wizard. Now if you liked that Who related performance, we have great news for you, but more on that later. If you know about the 80s then you know about Annie Lennox, who performed soon after. Rather than performing with Pink Floyd as he previously stated, Ed Sheeran simply covered them, busting out the iconic Wish You Where Here.
Now it was time for things to get a bit more contemporary. Russell Brand sang I Am the Walrus, and the sheer wig out factor of that performance would have done The Beatles proud, followed by Jesse J and Taio Cruz and Tinie Tempah. The reformed Spice Girls took the reigns after that. I mean, they were never good, and they weren’t good after 15 years but it’s still the Spice Girls.
Now reverting back to yesteryear, Liam, but no Noel, sang the international good times theme song Wonderwall. Some weird human cannonball type dealie turned into an Eric Idle surrounded by angels performing Always Look on the Bright Side of Life. Jessie J joined Roger Taylor Brian May for We Will Rock You. Take That, minus Robbie Williams, scored the symbolic extinguishing of the flame, which took place soon after.
Some more boring official speeches…A couple of mexican waves…
Once again, as per the rumours, The Who took centre stage, well, Roger Daltrey from The Who took centre stage, closing off the closing ceremony with See Me, Feel Me, and finally, My Generation, the perfect climax of the evening.
And that’s a wrap. No more frustrating McDonalds’ ads (well, no more frustrating Olympic-themed McDonalds’ ads), and no more 24-hour Simpsons marathon on other networks. It’s back to work as usual for the next 4 years. Keep an eye out though for Aussie media absolutely grilling our athletes who didn’t live up to the media’s standards of ‘Gold Medal Favourites’. Just because to SAY some one is a gold medal favourite, doesn’t mean they are, Channel 9.