The closing ceremony of 2012 London Games attracted a television audience that was bigger than any other Olympics closing ceremony. It was, however, lower than the number of people who tuned in to watch the opening of the world’s largest sporting event.
According to reports, a whooping 26 million British viewers watched Sunday night’s closing ceremony of the London Games on television. Roger Mosey, director of London Olympics 2012 at the BBC, tweeted on Monday: “Early indications are another stunning #BBC2012 ceremonies audience.”
However, the figures were reportedly less than those for the spectacular opening ceremony on July 27, which was watched by almost 27 million British television viewers. The ceremony was a brainchild of director which provided a breathtaking opening to the Games.
An average British audience of 22.9 million watched the performances of some of the biggest names in British music from both past and present on their television screens Sunday night while the artists entertained the crowd live.
Highlights of the 3-hour long ceremony included the Spice Girls who were performing for the first time in four years, and who returned to the stage after nearly dying of pneumonia last year. Other performers who rocked the Olympic stadium included The , One direction, Take That, Jessie J and star Eric Idle.
The BBC proudly reported that the audience peaked at 26.3 million at 9.35pm which was the time when thousands of athletes entered the Olympic stadium while Elbow performed live.
The closing ceremony started at 9pm and also featured the official handover to the Brazilian city of Rio, who will be hosting the 2016 Olympic Games. The musical show was watched by British Prime Minister and , the London Mayor, from the stands before the latter took part in the handover.
BBC One controller Danny Cohen said it was an “absolute privilege” for him to broadcast the 2012 London Olympics on BBC One.
“It's been a phenomenal Games and Team GB's amazing achievements have helped draw huge audiences to BBC One and put the channel right at the heart of the action,” Cohen added. “We've had fantastic feedback about the quality of the BBC's coverage and all the teams involved deserve huge thanks and praise."