Youth Olympic Games Buenos Aires 2018 opens in a spectacular city centre ceremony in front of hundreds of thousands of people on the streets of the Argentine capital
The 3rd Edition of the Summer Youth Olympic Games opened in Buenos Aires in a spectacular ceremony on the streets of the Argentine capital.
Date: October 7, 2018 Location: Buenos Aires, Argentina
For the first time in modern Olympic history, the opening ceremony took place as a giant street party, in of the widest avenues in the world, Avenida 9 de Julio. Two hundreds of thousands of people - a record for an opening ceremony - surrounded the Obelisk, that played a central role in the ceremony, and millions more watched around the world online.
Almost 4,000 athletes between the ages of 15 & 18 from 206 National Olympic Committees are taking part in the Games, and they entered the ceremony together, rather than in the traditional parade.
For the first time in Olympic history the sports programme at Buenos Aires 2018 has a complete 50-50 gender balance, and in keeping with that the Torch Relay concluded with two legends of Argentinian sport – Paula Pareto and Santiago Lange. They had the honour of lighting the cauldron with the Youth Olympic flame, after Argentine President Mauricio Macri had declared the Games officially “open.” The flame will now be moved to the Youth Olympic Park venue, where it will continue to burn until the end of the Games on 18 October.
The Thai Boys’ football team, the Young Boars, who were rescued from a cave earlier this year after being trapped for two weeks were special guests at the ceremony. IOC President Thomas Bach commended them for their spirit and demonstrating the importance of sporting values.
2,000 people were involved in the show - including 350 performers, technicians and musicians from Argentine theatre company Fuerza Bruta. Moving stages brought the performance closer to the crowds in the streets, the 71.5 metre high Obelisk had sports displays up and down it, and, of course, there was a scintillating Argentine Tango routine.