Opening Ceremony: Unsung Heroes Apply the Finishing Touches

The Pacific Games are now only days away, and preparations for the opening ceremony are starting to reach fever pitch.

Saturday night at Sir John Guise Stadium is set to be something special, and Mi Ripot was lucky enough to be granted special behind the scenes access to see just how things are shaping up, for what is set to be an historic event.

As performers ran through rehearsals out on the stadium proper, it’s a warehouse situated behind the northern grandstand of the stadium where all the action is taking place. 

Opening Ceremony HQ, if you will.

This is where the unsung heroes of the opening ceremony are located; the artists, producers, sandwich makers and security guards. And you can even add on a couple of accountants as well. 

It’s here where I met two of the volunteer artists involved with creating and producing all of the props and pieces that will be beamed around the world as part of Saturday’s ceremony. 

Hundreds of people have been involved in the building, making, creating and painting processes; all of which have ventured to Port Moresby from various parts of the country.

“This is such a fantastic way for us to show off the unique culture of Papua New Guinea,” said Vincent, one of the many volunteers who has been helping out since the beginning of March.

“I’m from Southern region, so I’ve mainly been involved with building the Lakatoi for the opening ceremony,” he said.

The warehouse is full to the brim with an array of creations that will make their way on to Sir John Guise Stadium on Saturday night. It has been an incredibly rewarding experience for those involved behind the scenes.

“24 years ago, I watched the Pacific Games here in PNG as a small child. And now I am taking part in it and it’s very special to participate. I’m very proud of it,” said Vincent.

One of the younger volunteers is high school student, Indie, who hails from Hanuabada. She has worked on the masks and clay pots, which will feature heavily come Saturday evening. 

“I’m still at high school but I’m really into expressive art and design, so to do this has been a really exciting experience,” said Indie.

“Being able to make something, and then see it used in the opening ceremony is really cool. I can tell all my friends that I made that.”

The 2015 Pacific Games Opening Ceremony will be screened live on EM TV this Saturday night, with coverage kicking off from 6pm. So if you can’t be there, be sure to tune in. It’s going to be a night to remember. 

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