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SBD Global/September 10, 2012/Olympics

The Most Successful Paralympic Games Ever End With Coldplay, Rihanna and Jay-Z

The Closing Ceremony of the "most successful Paralympic Games rounded off a spectacular summer of sport in Britain," according to Tom Pilcher of REUTERS. The Olympic Stadium once again hosted a "memorable party for athletes and fans alike" on Sunday. Paralympians "rose and joined in with the Mexican waves inside the vast arena in east London after the end of the 11-day festival of sport," in which China finished top of the medal table. LOCOG Chair Sebastian Coe said, "We've had the most extraordinary summer of sport. I'm floating on cloud nine, sometimes cloud 10 or 11. When you get everything in alignment you get a damn big bang and that's what we've had here." The London Paralympics "sold 2.7 million tickets in total, almost 900,000 more tickets than Beijing four years ago." The unprecedented sales brought in nearly £45M ($72.1M), exceeding organizers' original target of £35M ($55.M) (REUTERS, 9/9).

CLOSING THE CURTAIN: In a review, Bernadette McNulty wrote that the Paralympics Closing Ceremony "marks the teary end to Britain’s summer of sporting love, when not only did we fall in love with the games and their heroes, but each other." Olympics Opening Ceremony Dir Danny Boyle said that the London Games should be "about the best of us, and the last six weeks Britain has been able to swoon over our finest attributes: kindness, a sense of fun, ambition, determination and a love of a good party." However, Closing Ceremony Dir Kim Gavin chose a "much simpler cast of one band, Coldplay, rather than an ego-fuelled circus of ageing stars." Coldplay are one of those "marmite bands who may not be everyone’s idea of the best of British but they know how to play to a stadium and fill it with emotionally, uplifting anthems." Rihanna demurely flew in on a swing to liven things up with her hit "We Found Love," and later Jay Z joined them on "Run This Town." The most successful Paralympics ever thankfully got the rousing Closing Ceremony that "it deserved" (London TELEGRAPH, 9/9).
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