|Commentary By DAVID SEGAL|
|Monday, 13 August 2012 09:27|
LONDON: With a gaudy three-hour farewell that mashed up theater, acrobatics, fashion and a few generations of musical idols, London extinguished the Olympic torch Sunday night, capping two weeks of athletic achievements with a jukebox collection of songs and a marathon display of endearingly wacky stagecraft.
It felt as if the Games had suddenly been programmed by England’s version of the Chamber of Commerce, which decided to take advantage of this final moment in the international spotlight to produce one long and kinetic ad for the country’s pop culture. Among those appearing on stage were Ray Davies, Fatboy Slim, Jessie J, George Michael, Russell Brand and Eric Idle, who led the crowd in a version of “Always Look on the Bright Side of Life,” while surrounded by skating nuns. The Who closed the evening with “My Generation,” after a number of speeches and dance numbers to hand off the games to Rio de Janeiro, which will host in 2016.
-- International Herald Tribune