After seven days of sporting achievement, thousands of
athletes and volunteers, dozens of events, countless displays of bravery, and
millions of smiles, the curtain fell on Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi
Officials and dignitaries from the UAE and Special Olympics, including His Highness Sheikh Nahyan bin Zayed Al Nahyan Al Nahyan, Chairman of Abu Dhabi Sports Council, Khalfan Mohammad Al Mazrouei, Managing Director of Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2019 and the President of Liberia, George Weah, led the celebrations.
Held at Zayed Sports City, the spectacular Closing Ceremony featured amazing performances by global superstars Keala Settle and Nicole Scherzinger.
Nicole opened the show with her latest song “Victorious” written especially for the Special Olympics World Games. The evening also saw Khaleeji idol Rashed Al Majed, Iraqi star Waleed Al Shami, and Emirati singer Hamad Al Ameri take to the stage to the delight of Arabic music fans.
A special place at the heart of the Closing Ceremony was reserved for the scores of volunteers whose commitment and unwavering dedication ensured the largest sports and humanitarian event of the year ran smoothly each day.
All eyes in the stadium turned to the giant screens for the World Games Abu Dhabi Legacy film. Featuring a host of athletes, fans and famous faces, the short film wonderfully summarized the seven days of sporting excellence and celebration of the human spirit by promoting a positive story for the future through unity and inclusion.
Athletes from the UAE and Sweden, alongside two Sargent Shriver Global Messengers, conducted the ceremonial handover of the Special Olympics Flag to Sweden who will host the Special Olympics World Winter Games in 2021.
The Declaration of Closing saw the Flame of Hope, which had burned brightly in its cauldron at Zayed Sports City since the Opening Ceremony, officially passed on in a moving ritual.
The Ceremony also saw the world premiere of the music video for the official song of Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2019, ‘Right Where I’m Supposed To Be’.
The Closing Ceremony came to an end with a a dramatic performance of ‘This is Me’, from ‘The Greatest Showman’ by Keala Settle. Supported by piano, strings and a group of dancers, Keala delivered a phenomenal, poignant, and emotional performance that was a fitting finale to truly amazing and historic World Games in Abu Dhabi as the skies above Zayed Sports City were illuminated in a wonderful display of colour and noise as thousands of fireworks shot into the air.
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