Long-awaited 2018 Annual Jubilee edition has been officially opened yesterday, April 27, 2018. The two-hour long ceremony was held in the iconic Rio de Janeiro’s Maracanã stadium in front of massive crowd of around 80 000 dignitaries and fans, and it certainly lived up to its hype.
Opening ceremony commenced at 17:30 local time, and was in fact delayed for a half an hour just like the Jubilee Gala Event the day before. The proceedings started with Brazilian national anthem being played. The anthem, which was adopted some 96 years ago, was performed by Brazilian Symphony Orchestra.
Second segment of the Opening ceremony, and also the first artistic segment, was story about the history of music in Brazil. Organizers took us on 500 years long music journey, which started with presentation of first recorded music-related activities from the mid 16th century, originating from modern day Ouro Preto. The music journey continued with 18th century Brazilian opera (O Guarani), which was then followed by presentation of the early 20th century movement for creating an authentic Brazilian music (featuring Villa-Lobos). Samba presentation brought a lot of smiles to the jam-packed stadium and featured globally recognized Aquarela do Brasil tune. Presentation of Bossa Nova movement from 50s and 60s featured Girl From Ipanema, performed by Daniel Boaventura and Daniel Jobim. Boaventura and Jobim have had the honor of performing the same song at the very first TISC edition, 2013 Open. Music history segment ended with a presentation of Brazilian pop music (MPB), which started in the mid 60s. MPB section featured a lovely performance of Maria Rita who performed Como Nossos Pais.
One of the evening’s highlights, the Parade of Nations, commenced immediately after the journey through Brazil’s music history. Organziers have smartly extended the music history segment over the Parade of Nations, which was accompanied by Brazilian contemporary music, signifying our arrival from the past into the present and future. Parade of Nations was divided into four main parts featuring 10 nations each.
Ireland received an honor of being very first to go, which was a recognition of Ireland as the home of TISC. Visibly shaken from the scandal from yesterday’s Gala, during which the Irish appeared in way too casual clothes, the Irish have seemingly decided to play very safe this time around and have in fact been completely over-dressed for the occasion! Parade of Nations was then conducted in the Portugues alphabet order until finally Venezuela entered the stadium as the 40th participant.
Antarctica was put out of order and was placed right in front of the home team order-wise, much like the Refugee Olympic Team at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics almost two years ago. Antarctica’s emotional entrance was accompanied by a playful tune O Pingium, by Toquinho. Finally, it was the host’s turn to enter the stadium, much to the delight of the gathered crowd. Brazil’s entrance featured Rio 2016 Olympic Torch tune.
Signifying the 10th edition celebrations, Jubilee Opening ceremony featured the very first Contest Oaths. Three oathes were presented: Artists’ Oath, Jurors’ Oath and Hosts’ Oath. The honors of presenting the oaths were given to Nabila Dali (Algerian singer), Rybak (Polish juror) and Titicow (member of the Organizing committee).
A poignant tribute was given to Dolores O’Riordan, Irish singer and TISC winner who died tragically earlier this year. As a lead singer of the popular Irish band The Cranberries, O’Riordan stole the show at the 2014 Open with Zombie. Their final score of 333 points remains to be an unmatchable TISC record, as in fact no one has even come within 100 points of that mark.
2018 Annual is the very first TISC edition to be held on the South American soil. Having that in mind, a special tribute was given to the South American continent. Uruguayan artist Jorge Drexler proudly presented the rest of the continent while performing Al Otro Lado del Rio. Aside from Brazil, three more South American countries will take part in this edition (Argentina, Colombia, Venezuela). Chile, Guyana and Uruguay have taken part at some of the previous editions (sadly not this time), while Bolivia, Ecuador, Paraguay, Peru and Suriname are yet to be presented at the TISC stage. Aside being the first host from South American, Brazil is also the first southern hemisphere nation to be given the honor.
Next segment of the Opening ceremony was the presentation of the much anticipated 2018 Annual Jubilee official logo.
The main figure for the logo, the arara-vermelha (Red-and-green macaw) is a large species widespread in the forests and woodlands of northern and central South America, especially in Brazil, Paraguay and Argentina. However – in common with other macaws – there has been a decline in its numbers due to habitat loss and illegal capture. With the use of its image here at the logo, we hope to raise awareness to this fact, but also celebrate its beauty. In the logo, the bird is combined with musical waves (to bring a music element) that also resembles the Sugarloaf Mountain in Rio.
Perhaps the most popular TISC opening ceremony tradition, unveiling of the official scoreboard, took place next. Scoreboard features the official logo at the top while its main color is the blue. Rankings arrows have been added for the first time in TISC history. They will be part of the top 5 provisional standings table and should give even more of an input into top 5 dynamics as the day goes by.
After a night of music and celebration, the Opening ceremony was concluded with the lighting of the very first TISC flame. OlympicIRL, Irish juror and TISC president, was given the huge honor of litting the cauldron. It is believed that OlympicIRL became the first person to lit a flame while wearing a business suit. Later on OlympicIRL excitedly stated: “Wow, it was a huge honour to light the TISC flame for this jubilee edition. Thank you for this invitation vini.” Lighting of the flame was followed by a massive fireworks display going around the entire Rio de Janeiro.
Jubilee Grand Final takes place Saturday, at 07:00am local time, in the Rio de Janeiro’s Olympic park. It’s the earliest ever start of the Grand Final, but be sure not to miss it!