Tokyo Games open with pomp despite circumstance

The 2020 Olympics officially opened Friday with a barrage of fireworks, nods to Japan’s history and culture, and a mesmerizing drone display over Tokyo’s night sky.

Associated Press

Jul 23, 2021, 9:24 PM

Updated 998 days ago

Share:

Tokyo Games open with pomp despite circumstance
The 2020 Olympics officially opened Friday with a barrage of fireworks, nods to Japan’s history and culture, and a mesmerizing drone display over Tokyo’s night sky.
And, of course, without fans there to see it.
The pomp of these games is unlikely to escape its circumstance - namely, that the quadrennial event is being staged a year late, in front of empty grandstands, against the will of many in Japan and at the risk of infection for those involved.
Athletes paraded into Tokyo’s National Stadium on Friday night, cheered only by competitors or by the performers lining their route. Hard to find familiar faces beneath all their facemasks, but shirtless, glistening Pita Taufatofua stood out again while carrying Tonga's flag for the third time.
Fireworks erupted off the arena’s roof and music blared from its loudspeakers, but the tone for much of the ceremony was somber, including during an opening number when performers mimicked athletes training in isolation. The mood lightened later, including for jazz pianist Hiromi’s dazzling fast fingers.
Tennis star Naomi Osaka concluded the ceremony by lighting the Olympic cauldron atop a peak inspired by Mount Fuji.
(AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)


More from News 12
1:40
West Islip student accused of bringing gun, bullets to high school pleads not guilty

West Islip student accused of bringing gun, bullets to high school pleads not guilty

2:19
Chances for showers next 2 days; cooler trend for rest of workweek

Chances for showers next 2 days; cooler trend for rest of workweek

1:04
Driver in fatal shooting of Detective Jonathan Diller pleads not guilty

Driver in fatal shooting of Detective Jonathan Diller pleads not guilty

1:59
State budget tentative agreement allows school boards to move forward

State budget tentative agreement allows school boards to move forward

1:53
DEC: 3rd layer discovered under chemical drums already uncovered at Bethpage park

DEC: 3rd layer discovered under chemical drums already uncovered at Bethpage park

0:22
Police: 2 officers injured while making arrest at Bellerose 7-Eleven

Police: 2 officers injured while making arrest at Bellerose 7-Eleven

0:30
Police: 23-year-old charged for scrawling antisemitic graffiti in East Meadow

Police: 23-year-old charged for scrawling antisemitic graffiti in East Meadow

0:40
More than 200 pizzerias on LI band together to raise money for fallen NYPD detective

More than 200 pizzerias on LI band together to raise money for fallen NYPD detective

1:52
‘Wastewater Olympics’ held in East Rockaway ahead of Earth Day

‘Wastewater Olympics’ held in East Rockaway ahead of Earth Day

1:50
Made on Long Island: Ronance Mouthwatering Morsels in Bellmore

Made on Long Island: Ronance Mouthwatering Morsels in Bellmore

2:23
State budget makes no change to foundation school aid; governor signals changes coming in 2026

State budget makes no change to foundation school aid; governor signals changes coming in 2026

1:43
Police: Several people hurt in Garden City bus crash

Police: Several people hurt in Garden City bus crash

1:32
Nassau Community College professors call on state to step in to help school survive

Nassau Community College professors call on state to step in to help school survive

1:33
Groundbreaking ceremony marks beginning of Jake's 58 Casino's $210M expansion project

Groundbreaking ceremony marks beginning of Jake's 58 Casino's $210M expansion project

1:32
Nassau residents deliver petition with more than 1,600 signatures against proposal to deputize residents

Nassau residents deliver petition with more than 1,600 signatures against proposal to deputize residents

Police: Driver arrested for fatal Brentwood hit-and-run

Police: Driver arrested for fatal Brentwood hit-and-run

1:39
Paws & Pals: Dogs up for adoption at Almost Home Animal Rescue

Paws & Pals: Dogs up for adoption at Almost Home Animal Rescue

4:39
Guide: Ways to help you identify and deal with work burnout

Guide: Ways to help you identify and deal with work burnout

1:49
Officials: Fire dispatcher's wife alerts him about blaze at their Centereach home

Officials: Fire dispatcher's wife alerts him about blaze at their Centereach home

0:32
State police: Trooper conducting traffic stop rear-ended on Meadowbrook State Parkway

State police: Trooper conducting traffic stop rear-ended on Meadowbrook State Parkway