Organizers of the 2014 Asian Games pledged Wednesday to stage impressive opening and closing ceremonies of the continent's largest sports event with programs that will show all 45 participating countries can become one.
Film director Im Kwon-taek, who is in charge of the event's opening and closing ceremonies, said that "Dream of 4.5 billion people, One Asia" is the theme of his program to organize the ceremonies.
The 2014 Asian Games will kick off on Sept. 19 for a 16-day run in Incheon, a metropolitan city west of Seoul.
"This is not an event to boast South Korea's national prowess but to promote harmony among Asian countries," Im said at a press conference in Seoul. "We're not going for the scale seen in China
but a brilliant idea that would give hope to other countries that they, too, can host the Asian Games."
Jang Jin, another renowned filmmaker and the executive producer of the ceremonies, then explained the details of the opening ceremony to reporters.
Popular K-pop groups EXO and JYJ will stage opening acts, followed by a closing performance by rapper Psy, whose music video "Gangnam Style" catapulted him to global stardom in 2012, the organizers said.
Also expected at the ceremony are soprano Jo Sumi and a choir of 919 Incheon residents who will sing "The Song of the Asiad" written by poet Ko Un, and "Arirang", an iconic Korean folk song, they said.
Other participants will include actors Jang Dong-gun and Kim Soo-hyun, five musical actors and actresses as well as Ock Joo-hyun, a former member of the successful 1990s girl group Fin.K.L., the organizers said.
The press conference ended with an impromptu catwalk of models donning seven different outfits of placard holders, inspired by the national flowers of the Games' participating countries. The ceremony will feature all 45 uniforms, the organizers said.
The organizers also said the opening and closing ceremonies cost a record 25 billion won (US$24.6 million), the largest ever for a sports event in South Korea. (Yonhap)