2006 Winter Olympic Games

Season 1 Episode 1

Opening Ceremony

Aired Daily 8:00 PM Feb 10, 2006 on NBC
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Episode Summary

Opening Ceremony
The 2006 Winter Olympics began in the Stadium Olimpico with the Parade of Nations and the lighting of the Olympic cauldron.

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    Bob Costas

    Bob Costas


    Mary Carillo

    Mary Carillo


    Marco Balich

    Marco Balich

    Producer and Artistic Manager, Opening and Closing Ceremonies

    Brian Williams (II)

    Brian Williams (II)


    Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


    • TRIVIA (4)

      • The final torchbearers to carry the flame at the Opening Ceremony were:

        Alberto Tomba, 3-time Olympic Gold medalist
        The 1994 Italian Olympic Gold-medalist cross-country relay team
        Piero Gros, Alpine Skiing, Slalom, Gold medalist (1976)
        Deborah Compagnoni, Gold-medalist skier
        Stefania Belmondo, cross-country skier, 10 Olympic medals, including 2 Gold medals

      • The Olympic flag was carried into the stadium by eight women representing the various regions of the world:
        Sophia Loren, Italian actress
        Isabel Allende, Chilean novelist
        Nawal El Moutawakel, Moroccan hurdler/1st Muslim and African female Olympic champion (1984)
        Susan Sarandon, U.S. actress and activist of Welsh and Italian heritage
        Wangari Maathai, Kenyan Nobel Peace Prize recipient (2004), 1st African woman to receive the award
        Manuela Di Centa, Italian cross-country skier, 7 Olympic medals
        Maria Mutola, winner of Mozambique's 1st Olympic medal
        Somaly Mam, Cambodian women's rights activist

      • Eighty-four gold medals will be awarded at the Games. The medals have a hole in the middle and have the appearance of a flattened donut. The design represents the piazza at the center of Turin.

      • The mascots of the 2006 Winter Olympic Games in Turin (Torino) are Neve the snowball and Gliz the ice cube. They were created by Pedro Albuquerque, a Portuguese designer. They portray the two key ingredients for the Winter Games, snow and ice.

    • QUOTES (1)

      • IOC President Jacques Rogge: Please compete in a spirit of fair play, mutual understanding and respect and, above all, compete cleanly by refusing dope.

    • NOTES (4)

      • Luciano Pavarotti closed out the Opening Ceremony with "Nessum Dorma" ("Let No One Sleep") from Puccini's opera "Turandot."

      • The flame from the final Olympic torch did not actually light up the Olympic cauldron. It set off a spectacular sequence of flares that circled the central stage and moved up to the upper level of the stadium. Only then did the cauldron light up.

      • The cauldron for the Olympic flame was designed by Pininfarina SpA, the company that designs Ferraris. The cauldron is 200 feet high, the tallest in Olympic history.

      • Turin beat out five competitors in 1999 for the right to host these Games: Helsinki, FINLAND; Klagenfurt, AUSTRIA; Poprad-Tatry, SLOVAKIA; Sion, SWITZERLAND; and Zakopane, POLAND.

    • ALLUSIONS (0)