: Washington Post: Rio's Olympic Opening Ceremonies had low budget, high appeal

10:30 Aug. 6, 2016

Washington Post: Rio's Olympic Opening Ceremonies had low budget, high appeal

Fireworks explode after the lightning of Olympic cauldron during the opening ceremony of the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Saturday, Aug. 6, 2016 (AP Photo)

Summer Games 2016 opening ceremony kicks off 

With the sound of crashing waves and smooth bossa nova, the Summer Games kicked off Friday night, August 5, with an earthy, musical celebration of Brazilian culture, a rainbow-colored dance party that highlighted the glories and tragedies of South America's largest nation.

Read also Ukraine flag raised in Rio's Olympic village

The four-hour Opening Ceremonies had a gutted budget but a soaring feel as the stadium in this seaside city pulsed with lights, fireworks, circus-like acrobatics and a samba singalong that embraced the nation's partying style.

The celebration didn't dwell on Brazil's recent upheaval — its worst recession in decades, and the suspension of its president, Dilma Rousseff, who faces an impeachment trial, probably during the Olympics. But the nation's troubles intruded anyway. When the acting president, Michel Temer, formally declared the continent's first-ever Olympic Games open, his words were quickly drowned out with boos.

Read also 2016 Rio Olympics Ukrainian schedule: August 6 (infographics)

The ceremony took the long view, back to the creation of Earth, from the first molecules and the forest primeval, to send a warning about climate change and the need to protect the natural wonders that Brazil once had in abundance. There were ominous moments from the darker side of Brazilian history, from slavery to the creation of mega-cities, and lectures about carbon levels, the Earth's temperature and protecting the environment. Full story 

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