Africa's first FIFA World Cup set to close in a blaze of lights and music

The Closing Ceremony of the 2010 FIFA World Cup produced by the VWV consortium is set to be a colorful, celebratory tribute to the tournament, the fans and their experiences in the host country during a memorable month.
The 30-minute night-time ceremony will take place at 18h30 on Sunday, 11 July 2010, at Johannesburg's Soccer City Stadium - ahead of the showpiece 2010 FIFA World Cup final - and will feature some spectacular performances and unique special effects.

It will be broadcast live in 215 countries to an audience in excess of 500-million viewers. It will feature 780 cast members and some of South Africa and Africa's top musicians and dancers.

Columbian pop star Shakira will feature at her second successive FIFA World Cup closing ceremony, performing the hit song "Waka Waka" with South Africa's Freshlyground. The catchy song has topped the global music charts in 15 countries and was the most watched video on the internet in the month of June, with over 70 million hits on You Tube to date.

The other artists at the ceremony include multiple Grammy Award winners Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Jozi, Stoan Seate, Slikour, Abigail Kubeka, Theo Kgosinkwe, Afrikaans artists Nianell and flutist Wouter, Nigeria's 2Face, Ghana's Samini and popular local traditional group Ihashi Elimhlophe.

Derek Carstens, the OC's Chief Marketing Officer said the Ceremony will have a distinctive African feel, with world-class technology and a contemporary, youthful theme.

"Africa's first FIFA World Cup has showcased the unique and colorful spirit and warmth of the African continent and its people. The closing ceremony will pay tribute to that spirit with a world-class production. It will also be a tribute to the football that's been played in the tournament, to the fans and their experiences. It will also be a reminder of what South Africa has offered the world over the last month and encourage fans to come back to our country in great numbers after the tournament," said Carstens.

"While the opening ceremony was more traditional in its approach in order to do justice to Africa's heritage, the closing ceremony will have more contemporary and youthful themes. It takes place at night, which will allow for more dramatic lighting and special effects. We urge those at the stadiums and those tuning in to take their seats early and not to miss what's sure to be a spectacular show," Carstens added.

The Soccer City stadium gates open on Sunday at 14h30, six hours before kickoff of the 2010 FIFA World Cup final at 20h30. The closing ceremony starts at 18h30 and spectators are urged to please be seated by 18h00 in order to be part of the historic closing ceremony of Africa's first FIFA World Cup.

The commercial display areas at Soccer City will be fully operational from 2pm and will offer a variety of fun-filled activities for early fans, with a number of transport options available from the City of Johannesburg.

7 Jul 2010 10:24

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