The program of the opening ceremony of the 20th Winter Olympics which is to start in Italy 's Turin at 8 p.m. CET are being kept top secret. However, reporters have managed to find out some of the details. It transpired that a well-known Italian choreographer Ivan Manzoni had prepared a breathtaking dancing extravaganza. Thirty dancers are expected to celebrate the start of the Olympics with a spectacular dancing at the height of 18 meters. The number will last for about four minutes only, although it took Manzoni and his troupe a year to prepare and rehearse it.
Mark Fisher, who worked with such mega rock stars as U2, Pink Floyd and Robbie Williams, designed a huge heart-shaped stage for the opening ceremony. Christophe Berthonneau will act as a lighting director for the show. Mr. Berthonneau became famous in the world at the very end of 1999 when the light system designed by the engineer illuminated the Eiffel Tower in Paris to see the new millennium in.
World-famous fashion designers Giorgio Armani, Roberto Bolle and Carla Bruni have also contributed to the opening ceremony of the 20th Winter Olympics.
Traditionally, the ceremony will include a series of mandatory events: the international parade of athletes, a speech from the head of the International Olympic Committee, the appearance of the Olympic flag and the Olympic Flame on the arena etc. More than 6,100 volunteers and 240 professional artists will take part in the official program. Six thousand and one hundred costumes, 5,500 pairs of shoes and 500 pairs of skates have been designed for the extras and the artists. Thirty-two TV cameras will broadcast the opening ceremony live.
World-known tenor Luciano Pavarotti is said to appear at the ceremony too. Italian mountain-skier Giorgio Rocca is expected to read out the Olympic oath.
A hundred and ten Russian athletes dressed up in red-white clothes designed by Italian company Bosco di Ciliegi will march at the ceremony during the international parade of athletes. The Russian delegation counts 356 people in total, 178 of them are athletes.
The Italian Olympic squad will finish the parade. Athletes dressed in Giorgio Armani clothes will form a living national flag of Italy in the stadium.
The name of the athlete to light the Olympic flame in Turin is still unknown. Rumors say that it will be Italian mountain-skier Alberto Tomba or skier Stefania Belmondo. The organizers of the Games have not ruled out the idea of a group of people lighting the flame so as to avoid friction between the athletes.
Italian President Carlo Ciampi and the Italian movie star Sophia Loren will represent Italy at the opening ceremony. The never-fading actress will probably host the whole ceremony.
VIP seats have been reserved for many foreign politicians including presidents of Germany, Estonia, Latvia, Austria and many others. Ministers of sports from 45 countries of the globe have confirmed their presence on the ceremony. Laura Bush and her daughters will represent the US administration in Turin .
The air space above Turin will be closed on February 10th. The airport will be allowed to receive only sports and official delegations. Thousands of police officers will guard the Olympic constructions in the Alps. The local security authorities do not have any information about possible terrorist attacks. However, the Turin government is worried about the anti-globalists' plans to ruin the opening of the Olympics.