We’re sure that you’re all aware that a certain sporting event kicks off at the end of this week, and as the big day approaches anticipation is beginning to reach fever pitch despite the somewhat fraught build up involving security and traffic. Sports fans across the nation are preparing themselves for just over two weeks of wall-to-wall sporting action, with something for everyone including athletics, swimming and something being staged a little bit closer to home for us here at PG Stage, football.

Of course, anyone who works in theatre knows that getting things off to a bang is important to capture audience attention and it’s certainly no different in the case of London’s centrepiece event this summer. The opening ceremony is a long standing tradition when it comes to the games and a nation’s success in holding the event is often determined not by its stadia or infrastructure but its ability to put on a good show at the beginning and end of the games.

This Friday at 9pm will see Britain present its attempt at the ceremony to the world, and according to initial reviews, it shouldn’t disappoint! Although it has been subject to some controversy itself, director Danny Boyle’s show has been subject to high praise already and promises to be an action-packed celebration of British culture. Plot details are under lock-and-key until the big day, but it has been confirmed that David Beckham will be playing a role, which is a lovely touch after his unceremonious snubbing from the Great British football team.

Some of the statistics surrounding the staging of the event are staggering. The ceremony will be staged over 15,000 square metres with a million watt PA system – that’s more than 500 speakers! A little bit larger than your average stage lighting and sound system project then! Surprisingly though, the technical team behind the lighting at the show isn’t as large as you may think, with 16 lighting professionals and 24 stage crew overseeing the smooth running of the show.

The show will have a huge cast, including 990 children from East London schools. To clothe all these cast members, costume designers have created enough outfits for someone to wear a new one every day for 63 years – by our calculations, that means there is 22, 995 costumes designed for the event, enough to fill one mile of costume rails!

The show has cost £27million to put together and stage, which sounds like a lot but actually seems a bit of a bargain when contrasted with previous ceremonies – China, for example, spent a whopping £64 million on theirs! We’re looking forward to seeing what kind of lighting setup that kind of money will buy you and the possibilities of such a setup.

The ceremony kicks off at 9pm this Friday and should end at around 12:30am – that may sound like quite a long haul, but hopefully it’ll be worth it. In the meantime, if you’re interested in setting up a light show of your own and are struggling, give us a call – we’d be more than happy to help you with any stage design, lighting or equipment issues you may have!