The Olympics are the highlight of each year and the Tokyo 2020 Games are set to be the biggest in history. The start of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games was marked by the lighting of the cauldron at the new National Stadium and saw the ceremony kick off in grand style, with Naomi Osaka—the first Japanese athlete to win a Grand Slam singles title—lighting the Olympic flame.
Naomi Osaka breezed through the singles draw at the US Open this year, beating Serena Williams on her way to the title. She then backed up her impressive showing on the court by winning the Australian Open, becoming the first Japanese woman to win the tournament.
The opening ceremony of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics was held on Sunday, September 24, and it was a grand affair, to say the least. In Japan, the ceremony is always broadcast live and is considered a national holiday, and is usually pretty festive. The event, which was held in a stadium in the Olympic park in Tokyo’s downtown area, was attended by 46,000 people, including Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who re-lit the Olympic flame himself.
On Friday, the opening ceremony of the Tokyo Olympics started in a mostly empty stadium, as coronavirus infections in the host city reached a six-month high. To avoid the spread of COVID-19, contestants’ friends and family were prohibited from attending the ceremony in person.
Naomi Osaka, a tennis player, ignited the cauldron on a peak modeled like Mount Fuji, bringing the flame’s journey from Greece to Japan to a close. The four-time Grand Slam champion dipped the flame in the cauldron to signal the Games’ official opening, and fireworks erupted in the sky.
Naomi Osaka of Japan reacts after lighting the flame during the opening ceremony of the 2020 Summer Olympics at the Olympic Stadium in Tokyo, Japan, on Friday, July 23, 2021. AP Photo/Ashley Landis
Following a spectacular fireworks display, the inaugural ceremony took on a more solemn tone. A minute of silence was observed at the start for those who died as a result of the epidemic, as well as for members of the Israeli Olympic team who were killed during the 1972 Munich Games.
The actions honoring Japanese culture and history were straightforward and straightforward. In the backdrop, a white pyramid representing Mount Fuji remains.
In line with Olympic tradition, Greece was the first country to enter the stadium in the parade of nations. Representatives from the refugee team were present. Japan, as the host nation, was the latest to arrive. The American team was placed third to last.
Athletes from the United States of America walk during the opening ceremony of the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, Japan, on Friday, July 23, 2021. AP Photo/David J. Phillip
After filing into the stadium, President of the International Olympic Committee Thomas Bach addressed the athletes, saying, “You had to overcome tremendous difficulties on your Olympic journey.”
“You didn’t know when you’d be able to train again during the epidemic… You have no idea whether or not this tournament would ever take place. You had a hard time. You stuck it out. You were never one to give up. And now, you’re realizing your Olympic goal “he said
This year, an additional line was added to the Olympic slogan, making it read: “Faster, higher, stronger — together.”
21 pictures from the opening ceremony of the Tokyo Olympics
“The epidemic separated us,” Bach said. “To maintain a safe space between us. To keep our distance, even from our loved ones. Because of the split, the tunnel was very dark. But today, wherever you are in the globe, we are united in experiencing this moment. For everyone of us, the Olympic flame helps this light shine brighter “he said
A select group of officials and dignitaries, including US first lady Jill Biden, were allowed to observe from the stands. The Associated Press reported that hundreds of fans and supporters gathered outside the Olympic Village gates, waving at vehicles with Olympic emblems or individuals with Olympic credentials.
Other masses, on the other hand, assembled in Tokyo to oppose the Games.
Anti-Olympic protesters gather outside the National Stadium in Tokyo, Japan, where the Tokyo Olympics’ opening ceremony was held on Friday, July 23, 2021. Kantaro Komiya / Associated Press
On Friday, dozens of protesters shouted “cancel the Olympics” and “go to hell, IOC” across the city. Despite safeguards, there are concerns that the incident may exacerbate the coronavirus epidemic in Japan.
Aside from the epidemic, the opening ceremony’s grandeur was marred by the dismissal of the event’s creative director. Kentaro Kobayashi was fired on Thursday after a video surfaced of him making a Holocaust joke.
The Tokyo games kicked off with an opening ceremony that was more uplifting and patriotic (if that’s the right word) than ever before: the Japanese people are celebrating, the athletes are there to support them, and the hopes of a country that has never won the Olympic gold medal are high. The Olympics are not only a chance for the Japanese to make up for its lost years, but also a chance for the world to see how much the country has changed.. Read more about japan opening ceremony review and let us know what you think.
Frequently Asked Questions
Was there an Opening Ceremony for the Tokyo Olympics?
Yes, there was an Opening Ceremony for the Tokyo Olympics.
Did Naomi Osaka light the Olympic torch?
Yes, Naomi Osaka lit the Olympic torch.
Who lit the cauldron 2021?
The cauldron was lit by the Hogwarts Sorting Hat in 2021.
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