Ashgabat 2017 Closing Ceremony a dazzling finale
27 September, 2017 (23:20)
Though the medals of Ashgabat 2017 were finally in the hands of all of the deserving winners by early Wednesday afternoon, there was still one final step to go before the curtain could be closed on what has been the best ever Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games.
That final bit of procedure came when the Esteemed President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow declared the Games officially over in his opening remarks at Wednesday night’s Closing Ceremony.
Then, with the Ashgabat 2017 flame extinguished and the President watching on, the people of Turkmenistan and all those who had gathered to be a part of the Games were able to unite for one final celebration in the sold-out, 45,000-seat Ashgabat Olympic Stadium.
And celebrate they did, as the Balich Worldwide Shows-produced Closing Ceremony brought wonder, thrills, and so many fond memories of the past 12 days to centre stage in a beautiful, colourful, and star-studded production that closed out the best ever AIMAG in a truly fitting manner.
Wednesday’s show was an experience in light and sound, choreography and projection, and incredible performances from start to finish, all in the name of celebrating sport, athletes, and the people behind the scenes who made it all happen - with a special acknowledgment of the thousands of First Star volunteers without whom Ashgabat 2017 could never have happened.
With an opening sequence inspired by the Turkmen winds that would be one of the four natural themes upon which the rest of the ceremony would ride upon, the ceremony began by reintroducing the ancient culture of Turkmenistan and its people before moving to a high-action dance sequence illustrating all of the 21 sports that were contested at Ashgabat 2017.
After this it was time to look back at some of the greatest highlights of the Games with a video montage. From the incredible six gold medals won in Belt and Traditional Wrestling by Turkmenistan’s own Seydi Batyrow, to the world record-setting performance in the men’s -94kg Weightlifting class by Iran’s Sohrab Moradi, to the dozens upon dozens of magical moments in between, the highlight-reel package reminded us once again why sport is such a wonderful force in the world.
From here the show moved on to some wonderful artistic segments, with flowers, sea waves, and the beat of the land all dictating the direction of the next movements, before the ceremony switched gears one more time, moving toward an ending with a bang.
The grand finale could only be described as the Party sequence, featuring heart-pumping live performances from a series of international stars, including Russia’s Nyusha, Lebanon’s Elissa, John Newman from the United Kingdom, and more than a dozen of the best and brightest musical performers from Turkmenistan, including Parahat Amadurdyyew, Gulsat Gurdowa, and Annaguly Myratdurdyyew.
And there in the magnificent Ashgabat Olympic Stadium, with the music pumping, the glowsticks waving in the crowd, and fireworks exploding overhead, the Ashgabat 2017 5th Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games came to a close on an incredible high, sending all who were a part of this magnificent Games home with memories they will no doubt cherish forever.
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