Like millions of others on Friday night we watched the opening ceremony of the 2012 Olympics, and not only was it a visual spectacular, but it was also a musical extravaganza. The whole evening was a glorious mix of both popular and classical music. From the orchestra on the meadow in the opening sequence to the spine tingling melody of Jerusalem and the upbeat mashup of pop music through the decades, there was something for everyone.
I was particularly intrigued by the sequence that showcased the unlikely pairing of the NHS and children’s literature, (J.MBarrie left all royalties from Peter Pan to GOSH – Great Ormond Street hospital) And another literature/musical reference with the appearance of Mary Poppins.
Most people associate Mary Poppins with the blockbuster Disney movie starring Julie Andrews and Dick Van Dyke, but the P.L.Travers novels are actually more accurately depicted by the recent stage musical which is much darker in it’s themes than the movie. The Cameron Mackintosh stage musical includes all the famous tunes penned for the Disney film, but some new songs were also written including Brimstone and Treacle, Practically Perfect and Anything can Happen. This last song in particular has inspirational lyrics which I feel embody the Olympic spirit.
“Anything can happen if you let it
If you reach for the stars
All you get are the stars…….
If you reach for the heavens
You get the stars thrown in”
And we have certainly seen athletes reaching for the heavens since Friday! But if they are practically perfect in every way only time will tell!