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Olympic closer hit parade has The Who, Spice Girls



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There will also be an eight-minute section of song and dance created by the next Summer Games host country, Brazil. Expect samba, colorful costumes and some 300 performers, including supermodel Alessandra Ambrosio.

And of course there will be ceremonial elements, including the raising of the flags of Greece — birthplace of the Olympics— current host Britain and 2016 games host Brazil. Dignitaries’ speeches — "which hopefully will be nice and brief," Gavin said — will be followed by the extinguishing of the Olympic cauldron, marking the handover of the games to Rio.

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As with director Danny Boyle’s opening ceremony, London is aiming for a plucky, irreverent tone far removed from Beijing’s 2008 Olympic closer, which was heavy on precision fireworks, acrobatics and dancing.

Gavin said he was inspired by ceremonies like Sydney’s in 2000, which showcased the vibrancy of Australian culture.

"They did ‘Waltzing Matilda,’" he said. "They did stuff that said, ‘Hey, we’re Australian.’ That’s what our show does.

"Not that we’re Australian," he added quickly.

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Jill Lawless can be reached at http://Twitter.com/JillLawless




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