Official website of 16th FINA World Championships 2015 in Kazan
16th FINA World Championships

July 24 - August 9, 2015
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Opening Ceremony and Pilgrim show rehearsals begin at Tatneft Arena

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18.06.2015, 12:16 Official events
Rehearsals kicked off at the Tatneft Arena Sports Palace where the 16th FINA World Ceremony Opening Ceremony and Pilgrim shows will be held. Both variety performers and professional athletes will take part in the key ceremony of this summer’s mega aquatics event. With a little more than a month to go to the start of the Championships, Igor Krutoy, General Producer of the Opening Ceremony, addressed all water sports fans with a video message.

“I invite visitors and local citizens to the Pilgrim show. The performance dedicated to the World Championships opening is to become this summer’s most memorable event. The show brings together up to 200 ballet dancers, circus performers, synchro swimmers and Tatarstan’s most gifted singers on one stage. The Pilgrim show is a quest in search of the spring of life. Together with the show’s characters, we will find ourselves amidst a sea storm, discover the secret of an ancient city and travel to the bottom of the ocean. Eight re-runs will be staged during the Championships for those who want to see this incredible show. Don’t miss it!” Igor Krutoy says in his video message.

Details of the show are kept secret but the main concept of the show was revealed to the public: the show will reveal one of the multiple hidden meanings of the word 'water': water as the origin, as the beginning. The most sought-after place on the planet is a mysterious spring of life, wisdom and eternal youth. Wherever this cradle of life is located, it will always be the key to truth and well-being and provide answers to our life's most important questions. The audience will be the principal participant of this journey. Each part of the show, each step along the figurative road towards the life spring will be made with the direct involvement of literally each and every member of the audience. By using props, spectators will get wrapped up in the story. The show is directed by Alexey Sechenov. 

The show's sceneries will be installed on a multi-level cascade of swimming pools ranging in depth from 0.05 to 3 metres. Performers and props will be able to plunge into the water and emerge above the surface. The deep pool, 150 cubic metres in volume, will be used by highly-skilled synchronised swimming performers. Trapeze artists will fly above the arena while ballet dancers will perform on the stage. 

The FINA World Championships Opening Ceremony is a protocol event hosted for all the participants of the tournament: athletes, FINA Family, FINA Partners, Championships Partners, FINA National Member Federations, and the Organising Committee.  The selection of the Tatneft Arena Sports Palace as the venue for the ceremony allowed allocating a certain quantity of seats to spectators who are not Championships participants. Nevertheless, the number of seats allocated to spectators wouldn't be enough to seat all those willing to attend the event because the interest in the Opening Ceremony is expected to be extremely high. For this reason, to accommodate locals and visitors, the organisers came up with a proposal to stage re-runs of the major part of the Opening Ceremony, and this decision was backed by President of the Republic of Tatarstan, Rustam Minnikhanov.

Therefore, for the first time in the history of sporting events, re-runs of the Opening Ceremony will be organised especially for citizens of Kazan and its visitors during eight days, from July 26 to August 2. The first re-run will be a charity event and will be shown to children of Tatarstan’s foster homes. The only difference between the Pilgrim show and the Opening Ceremony is that there won't be any parade of nations and welcome speeches in the former. 

The 2.5-hour Opening Ceremony will be broadcast live. The coverage of the Opening Ceremony will reach an unprecedented global audience, delivering images from Kazan to water sports fans in 200 countries around the world. 

Tickets to the Pilgrim show went on sale as early as in mid-April to mark the beginning of the 100-day countdown to the sporting event. The Opening Ceremony tickets cost from 500 to 5,000 rubles with re-run tickets prices ranging from 500 to 3,000 rubles. Up to 15,000 tickets out of available 50,000 have already been sold. 

Press Office of Organising Committee for 16th FINA World Championships

Kazan 2015 Opening Ceremony and Pilgrim show rehearsals
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