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Information to the media - PyeongChang Olympic Flame-Lighting Ceremony

Getty Images
23 Oct 2017
Press Release, IOC News

The Olympic flame will be lit in Ancient Olympia on Tuesday 24 October 2017, marking the countdown to the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang.

The Olympic Torch Relay is one of the most symbolic of all Olympic events. It marks the countdown to one of the greatest athletic and cultural events in the world. It unites and inspires people, bound by the Olympic values of excellence, friendship and respect. The PyeongChang Olympic Torch Relay is an invitation to join in the celebrations around the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang and be inspired by its message: 'Passion. Connected.'

The ceremony in Olympia signals the beginning of an incredible journey that will bring the Olympic spirit to Korea and its citizens while inspiring the rest of the world. As a symbol of the good that the Olympic Games can do to bring the world together, a number of National Olympic Committee leaders will be present to show their support for the Games.

The ceremony will be held from 12:00 to 14:00 (GMT+3).

Programme (the full programme can be found here):
12:00 - Opening of the ceremony
- Anthems
- "The Light of Olympia", Takis Doxas’s poem recited by Yiannis Stankoglou
- Address by the Mayor of Ancient Olympia, Efthymios Kotzas
- Address by the President of the PyeongChang Organising Committee, Lee Hee-beom
- Address by the President of the International Olympic Committee, Thomas Bach
- Address by the President of the Hellenic Olympic Committee, Spyros Capralos

12:25 - Entry of the designated officials into the Temple of Hera
- Ritual of the lighting ceremony at the Temple of Hera
- Entry of the high priestess and the priestesses into the Ancient Stadium with the Olympic flame
- Dance performance by the priestesses

12:50 - Handing over of the Olympic flame by the high priestess to the first torchbearer in the presence of Thomas Bach, Lee Hee-beom, and the leaders of the National Olympic Committees of the upcoming Olympic Games and Olympic Winter Games: USA, Lawrence F. Probst III: China, Zaiqing Yu; Japan, Tsunekazu Takeda; France, Denis Masseglia; Republic of Korea, Kee-Heung Lee; as well as Spyros Capralos
- Departure of the first torchbearer for the Pierre de Coubertin Monument
- Opening of the Olympic Torch Relay

Material available to the media

Broadcast-quality footage
Footage of the lighting ceremony, including excerpts of the IOC President’s speech and soundbites of athletes, will be available to download on The IOC Newsroom:

Olympic Channel
The ceremony will be live streamed on the Olympic Channel website.

Broadcast feed
The live feed of the lighting ceremony will be made available to broadcasters. All questions regarding broadcasting should be addressed to Eurovision:
News Access Rules Olympic Torch Relay PyeongChang
News Access Rules PyeongChang

Social media
The ceremony will also be available on @olympics, @olympicchannnel, @iocmedia, @Pyeongchang2018 on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. All IOC regional languages will also carry the live feed on Twitter.

The ceremony will be lived streamed on, and a press release will be published after the event.


For an extensive selection of photos available shortly after each event, please follow us on Flickr.
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The 2018 Olympic Torch Relay will cover 2,018 kilometres by diverse means of transportation, including plane, ship, train, sailboat, robot, zip wire, cable car and bike, before entering the Olympic Stadium on 9 February 2018. Some 7,500 torchbearers will bring together tens of thousands of people to witness the event across nine provinces and eight major cities over 101 days in the Republic of Korea.

We believe the 2018 Olympic Torch Relay will bring with it a symbolic message of peace to everyone who witnesses its journey around the Republic of Korea. The Olympic flame carries a message of hope and inspiration wherever it travels. The Olympic Torch Relay is our way, as a sports organisation, of bringing that message to people across the host nation in a spirit of celebration as the Games approach.
For further details on the ceremony itself please contact the HOC .


The International Olympic Committee is a not-for-profit independent international organisation made up of volunteers, which is committed to building a better world through sport. It redistributes more than 90 per cent of its income to the wider sporting movement, which means that every day the equivalent of 3.25 million US dollars goes to help athletes and sports organisations at all levels around the world.


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