Glasgow 2014 has unveiled first details of the dramatic transformation planned for one of Scotland’s premier sporting venues for the Opening Ceremony, the show-starter to the XX Commonwealth Games.
Celtic Park’s entire South Stand will be transformed into Glasgow’s Window on the Commonwealth thanks to the installation of a digital LED backdrop, which will be the largest screen of its kind ever seen in Europe.
Nearly 100 metres wide, the screen will play a key role in the creation of a dramatic, immersive visual experience for the packed audience in Celtic Park including elite athletes from across the Commonwealth and international VIPs. It will also create a spectacular impression for an estimated live global TV audience of more than one billion.
The screen will be used both to share magical images of events as they unfold in the stadium itself as well as serving to connect the stadium to the city and to the Commonwealth beyond.
This means audiences in the stadium, at city live sites and in millions of homes across Scotland and across the world can all connect and share in the thrilling celebration of Glasgow’s Opening Ceremony– the curtain raiser to the UK’s next big sporting and cultural event.
Weighing in at 38 tonnes and 11 metres high, the mega-screen will cover 1020 square metres. Hidden behind the screen in the space normally allocated to spectator seating will be cast backstage and technical support services.
Eileen Gallagher, independent director on the Glasgow 2014 Board and chair of the Ceremonies, Culture and Queen’s Baton Relay Committee said: “Glasgow 2014’s Opening Ceremony is a wonderful opportunity for Glasgow and Scotland to welcome the world to the Commonwealth Games, to demonstrate our warmth and creativity and show that we love to host a good party.
“The ‘Window on the Commonwealth’ being created in Celtic Park is just one exciting glimpse of what I know will be a very special evening and just one of the ways through which we can realise our bold creative ambition to showcase our host city and nation in a number of surprising ways.”
David Zolkwer, head of ceremonies and artistic director for Glasgow 2014 said: “The building of a screen of this scale – running the entire length of Celtic Park’s South Stand – is going to add a really audacious dimension to Glasgow 2014’s Opening Ceremony. Both through sheer spectacle and as a wonderful story–telling device, our goal is for the screen to be a wow factor – a fantastic augmentation to the story we are telling our live audience in the stadium and the many hundreds of millions of people watching on television around the world.”
While much of the creative content of the Ceremony is still under wraps, auditions have taken place for thousands of ordinary people who have volunteered to be part of the Ceremonies cast.