The 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea is officially underway, with the Opening Ceremony taking place last Friday. South Korean figure skater, Yuna Kim, who won gold at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics, ignited the Olympic Cauldron to kick off the two week long event.
It was one of the biggest openings for the Winter Olympic Games in history, with almost 3,000 athletes from 92 countries competing.
It was a spectacular night of colourful fireworks, entertaining performances. Here are a few of our highlights:
The Children of Peace
The main characters of the night were five Korean children each representing one of the elements (fire, water, wood, metal and earth), which according to Korean traditional belief make up the universe. The Ceremony followed them on a journey through time, on a quest for the meaning of peace and harmony.
Team USA walk out to ‘Gangnam Style’
American Luger Erin Hamlin was flag bearer for Team USA, and didn’t disappoint – leading them in with Korean pop hit ‘Gangnam Style’ as their theme song.
All eyes on North and South Korea
For the first time in Olympic history, North Korea and South Korea marched under a united flag. It comes as a symbolic break in tension between the two nations over North Korea’s nuclear program.
All eyes were also on the 169 Russian athletes who were cleared to compete despite the Russian doping scandal that resulted in the nation being banned by the International Olympic Committee.
Donald Trump & Kim Jong-Un impersonators
Security guards had to throw out US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Jim Jong-Un out of the stadium on Friday. Well, at least that’s what it looked like.
The pair were actually impersonators who made it into the stands before being swiftly escorted out of the stadium. But it was all taken in good jest – with the crowd cheering and joining them for photos.
Korean singers cover John Lennon’s ‘Imagine’
Ha Hyun-woo of band Guckkasten, Ahn Ji-young of K-pop duo Bolbbalgan4, singer Jeon In-Kwon, and solo artist Lee Eun-mi sang their own moving rendition of the classic. Candles formed in the shape of a dove in the middle of the stadium as the song served as a beautiful call for peace and unity.
Yuna Kim lights the cauldron
Before long, it was the moment we had all been waiting for. Korean Figure Skater Yuna Kim, finally lit the Olympic cauldron to officially commence the Winter Olympics 2018.
For a schedule of all events head to the Pyeongchang 2018 website.