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

Stunning ceremony opens FINA World Masters Championships in Kazan

10.08.2015, 21:05 Culture
The FINA Water World Park is the cultural home of the FINA World Championships. Today, the 16th FINA World Masters Championships Opening Ceremony took place on the main stage of the Park. The event was attended by senior officials: FINA President, Dr. Julio C. Maglione, and the Prime Minister of the Republic of Tatarstan, Ildar Khalikov.

The stage was decorated with themes of the event. A central place on the stage was held by a screen where videos were broadcast devoted to Kazan and water sports. The stage contained an extra rotating platform with a diameter of 6 metres, which had a giant torch set in the middle – the symbol of the FINA World Masters Championships.

A colourful picture show was complemented by a fountain show: two baths, in which water jets were raised, illustrating what was happening on the main stage from a new angle, through a prism of water. The laser and fireworks show was a vibrant note on the FINA Masters' opening day.

The hosts of the ceremony were famous Kazan journalists Ksenia Sedunova and Timur Khanbikov. This year, the World Championships involve about 3,000 athletes competing in 5 sports across 14 age categories representing 73 countries. The traditional flags' parade appeared in front of the audience in an unusual way: acrobats, dancers and athletes demonstrated their skills, while simultaneously showing the flags of the Masters Championships. Then special guests appeared on stage: FINA President, Dr. Julio C. Maglione, and Prime Minister of the Republic of Tatarstan, Ildar Khalikov. 

"For the first time in the history of the FINA Championships, the World Masters Championships are running concurrently with the FINA World Championships. In continuation of the fabulous event, we hope that the World Masters Championships will surpass all those that were held before. Kazan is a city of great culture and traditions. Here you can both gain delightful sporting impressions as well as unforgettable memories for years to come. Kazan's Organising Committee has taken every effort to stage the FINA World Masters Championships at a new level. The FINA World Masters Championships confirm the important values of FINA: healthy living, fair play competition and friendship, regardless of nationality or age group. We hope that your stay in Kazan will be exciting and successful, and we thank everyone very much and wish you all the best for the Masters Championships in Kazan," Dr. Maglione said to the guests at the Opening Ceremony.

In his welcome address, Ildar Khalikov said: "I am sincerely glad and want to thank FINA for entrusting us with the right to   host not only the FINA World Championships, but also the World Masters Championships. We are very pleased that representatives from 73 countries, athletes, participants, Olympic champions, and world champions have come to visit us. I wish that all athletes realise the achievements to which they aspire. I wish that your stay in Russia, here in Kazan, will only leave you with the best impressions. We are proud that we can stage such a large competition. Welcome!"

After several videos and vibrant numbers, Alexander Danilov, tPresident of the Russian Masters Swimming Federation, appeared on stage. "For the first time, Russia is hosting the FINA World Championships and the World Masters Championships. Most importantly, these Championships are being held almost at the same time in your wonderful city. We are all witnessing the birth of a new beautiful tradition. This is thanks to the FINA leadership and the FINA Family!" said Alexander Danilov, and handed honours to the FINA executives – FINA President, Dr. Julio C. Maglione, and FINA Executive Director, Cornel Marculescu – for their contribution to the development of the Masters movement.

The Opening Ceremony of the 16th FINA World Masters Championships continued with musical performances by the best singers of Kazan and dance groups. The numbers were accompanied by dancing fountains and pyrotechnic effects. The Dancing Under the Water show was also staged. And eventually the ceremony ended with an amazing fireworks display.

4 photos
Stunning ceremony opens FINA World Masters in Kazan
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