Monday 13 August 2012

International messages sent out from the closing ceremony of London 2012 - Emperor's clothes?

The closing ceremony of the 30th Olympiad held in London may have said it all about the host nation's mood.  An eclectic outburst of euphoria without a clear strategy. If for an unlikely moment UK stopped to consider dispassionately what messages were being sent across the globe through the closing ceremony alone the sense of untrammelled exultation may have disappeared. A motley collection of pop figures from bygone years appearently constituted the vanguard of the desired image to be projected by Britain at the close of a highly successful London 2012 Games. The Pet shop Boys, Madness, the WHO, Queen heralded by a distinctly ghostly Freddie Mercury video seem to reinstate the 1980's as present day.  The distinctly surreal sight of the Spice Girls reunited, cavorting on the top of Black Cabs bizarrely added to the rooting of vibrant present day London in the past. Nothing was displayed of the innovative solutions that are being found to encourage growth and make London and the UK a continued magnet for foreign investment.  It may only have been an imaginative Royal Ballet corps beautifully bedecked in eycatching, colouful costumes on the Olympic stage to mark the extinguishing of the Olympic flame that saved the national pride of the host country. Given the various moralistic notes that have been struck many times during the past couple of years of recession it was perplexing that Russell Brand and George Michael were projected as national icons, a fact on which numerous foreign representatives commented wryly.
London is a genuinely global and modern metropolis that contributes hugely to the world economy - as every significant international politician and business leader knows.  Confidence in the future should have marked the close of an historic event for London and would have been a truer reflection of London's capacity to deliver imaginative and effective solutions and thought leadership for global challenges.  Lord Coe's extraordinary achievement in delivering the 2012 Olympic Games with flair, passion and extraordinary drive should be extolled.  But enough of rock and pop stars of decades past. 

Alexandrite international communications specialises in international communications and global profile and reputation management including crisis response. It is led by international journalist and longtime BBC news anchor Keshini Navaratnam  

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