Great Sochi show - best ever

Thank Og for the New York times. The electronic media is focused on gays, hotel rooms and scraps of bad news while the opening ceremony for the games must be the best I have ever seen. Our largest paper - the Toronto Star - did not eve mention/know the names of the famous Mariinsky dancer (Vishneva)nor the Bolshoi dancer ( Zakharova) and mentioned the Russian National anthem without mentioning that Anna Netrebko, among the top sopranos in the world today & in my view the world’s greatest living woman, sang even better than she looked and dressed (spectacular). Surely one of the great events was the Kandinsky machine dance - absolutely stunning, and it was not mentioned at all.
But, fortunately we do have the* New York times which described much of the show perfectly.
There is a ton of sour grapes in the western media about the great success of the opening ceremony. For all of its faults, there is hardly another nation that takes high culture so seriously. Consider that the trash who get all the attention are from the P
**y riot group who notoriously played - uninvited - in one of the most holy churches in all of Moscow. I have no use for religion, but I have been to that cathedral & as in many like places, a lot of the people in there praying are doing so because they are suffering, & the v. last thing they need is a self-promoting, loud, junk “music” disturbing them in their sacred place. Now they are somehow viewed, not as obnoxious offenders, but oppressed victims of something. Just one more attack on culture by barbarians.

If the Kandinsky Machine Dance is not recognized worldwide as the greatest cultural achievement ever, it will be due to the machinations of the international bankers and their capitalist media lackeys.

I am personally depending on Putin & Co. to save us from the barbarians, so, like right on-ski, OP.

The media are too picky:

I didn’t see any, can you give us a few links to the “ton of sour grapes in the western media?”

Also, the opening ceremony is an extended self gratification session the host country indulges in to a captive audience. It’s gone past silly. It should be limited to the entrance of the athletes and 15 minutes at most for the host country to welcome it’s guests.

And god only knows how much the Russians love their suffering. :rolleyes:

OP, you understand that the NYT is one of the premier “Western Media” news outlet? Toronto Star… is that still around?

I agree - it was interminable. I would have had to leave if I was there [I can only sit up like a stuffed bear for so long before my back is going to have serious pain. heater chairs are purgatorial.]

I loved seeing all the different athletes and support staff [though we were wondering at the number of equatorial countries that are not known for their snowy winters…] I can allow the need for the host country leader or delegate doing a speech, the chairman of the Olympic committee doing a speech, the raising of the flag and the running of the torch [that poor wrestler, he looked like he was going to stroke out from the running or something] and perhaps a short 15 minute paeon to the host country in song and dance of some sort.

Yes, the industrial dance was spiffy [wasn’t the music composed by that black jazz composer that did the ‘industrial jazz’ stuff or am I wrong?] and the trolololo thingy was cute but 3 freaking hours of self puffing twaddle framing Putin and Russia as the be all end all of Olympic Host Countries with Significant World History that nobody knows anything about… :rolleyes:

The ending portion with the athlete constellations was pretty weak. It was interesting for about 30 seconds, but once all of them had been revealed, it turned into 5 minutes of basically just flipping the lights on and off. My 4-year-old niece can do that (and she’s really good at it!).

I can’t say much about it because I turned off the TV and went to other things; it was very boring. Every so often I turned it on again and gave up on it again. I saw a picture on-line of the train thing - that looks like it could have been fun, but missed it.

Sorry, but most of us in the viewing public are barbarians like me. A dress being “spectacular” just does not thrill us. I couldn’t tell the difference between the best soprano in the world and the 1000th best even if they were in front of me and certainly not on my television speakers. I think the number of viewers who could is a very very small percent. I honestly do not care about the dancers’ names.

A show is aimed for an audience. This was a success for the target audience of the Russian viewing public and several thousand other people across the world who know and care who these dancers and singers are. To the degree that the target was the rest us, we barbarians, it missed the mark by a wide margin.

Now excuse me I have some roadkill to cook up.

I think you are trying to say ‘it wasn’t for Americans’, because I’ve heard plenty of positive things about the show. In general the dope is very interesting for me what the Olympics is concerned, both reporting and feelings about the whole thing are so very different from what I see around me. Who would have thought the whole cold war thing is still that influential (just a hypothesis).

Just sayin’ that it was boring for me and for a barbarian I am pretty well educated and exposed to culture. Again, I did not watch much of it, turned it off pretty fast each time I turned it back on, so maybe not fair of me. The impression I got from what I saw was what I wrote - a show aimed at Russians hungry for self-validation. China was not much different but I at least found that entertaining and kept watching … I think they were less interested in self-validation than showing off to the world so went for impressive spectacle.

In any case media in the West will report according to what interests their readership and viewership. NYT has a big enough segment that cares about the names of the dancers and singers and will report it; other papers and media outlets … don’t. They will report on what their readership or viewership is interested in.

Calling that sour grapes is, well, sour grapes.

From the small portion of the opening ceremonies that I viewed, I did not get the impression that the American commentating was designed to revive cold war stereotypes. It seemed to be following the approved host country script.

Example - there was a big number commemorating the Great Patriotic War (WWII), about which the announcer dutifully went on about the Russians sacrificing more than any other country proportionately. While I suppose this is true, a more dispassionate observer would have also noted that Russian leaders (in particular, Stalin) largely brought this massive suffering on their nation, first through a cynical alliance with the Nazis that gave Hitler confidence to start the war, and then blind stupidity in ignoring compelling evidence that the Germans were getting ready to invade Russia.

It’s good that some non-TV network voices are reminding us of the human rights violations and other negatives that Russian leaders are hoping to obscure by putting on a big Olympic show.

I appreciated the technology – the stuff on the floor - wow - and all the preparation that went into it. Individual segments were quite good but I’m not sure it made a satisfying whole. The bit that started with the train seemed out of place – everything else was so “pretty” – but maybe that’s to be expected, since the historical period represented by all that industrial stuff is so polarizing.

I liked the three-minute history, but it made it seem like Russia was settled by Vikings.

The Swan Lake dancers looked like jellyfish.

Nice and classy about the 20 million plus Soviet dead, Jackmannii. I take it the UK also brought the Blitz upon itself, what with appeasement and getting arsefucked in the Battle of France?

My immediate family fled their homeland of Latvia at the start of WWI due to Soviet/Russian aggression. My extended family lived in an occupied country for years, the opnes who weren’t sent to labor camps.

No warm fuzzies for Russia or its leaders here. That’s putting it mildly.

I like ballet a lot, but I watched most of the ceremony online or fast forward. It was pretty but mostly dry and humorless. Russia is that really hot guy at the party who only wants to talk about how intense he is.

Also, let’s be honest: the Parade of Athletes is the longest 2 hours in sports.

A silly comparison. The Brits didn’t ally themselves with the Nazis and split war spoils with them.

There might also be people in Finland who have a thought or two about Russian sacrifice during WWII.

My point was that there’s another side to the Russian image-polishing that went on in the opening ceremonies, and that the supposedly cold war-obsessed Americans didn’t mention it, at least in the network coverage that I saw.

I think you can get some idea of how well it was received by threads such as this. London? Beijing? people were raving about multiple elements of them but Sochi? There was some stuff that was clever and pleasing to the eye (and Tchaikovsky is never to be sniffed at) but it was all a bit po-faced and serious. Beijing and London I watched all the way through captivated but for this one I tuned in and out. As did my kids, it didn’t keep their interest too well.

Overall, very nice, but not wow!!! and not $51 billion worth.

Parts were very impressive and the show was all in all very nice. Love the projections onto the floor of the arena. I kept thinking “They can do this, but they can’t install toilets that can handle toilet paper?”. The costumes and dancing and acrobatics were all amazing. It was one of the best opening ceremonies that I can recall. But someone, anyone, please send some Valium to Meredith Viera. She was Debbie Downer all through the broadcast.

I admit I did not watch it but the impression I get from the people I talked to is that the successful opening ceremonies were like “Celebrate our Culture with us!” and this felt like “Look how big my dick is!”

Completely off?

I thought it was as impressive in it’s execution as it was boring to watch. Very.