sochi fireworks
2014 Sochi Winter Olympics [Reuters] Reuters

The opening ceremony of the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics will take place at the Russian city of Sochi on Friday. It is the first time Russia hosts the event since the breakup of the USSR in 1991.

Where to Watch Live

The opening ceremony will start at 4pm GMT/8pm Local Time (Russia). Live coverage of the event will be telecast on BBC Red Button 1 in the UK. There will be no live coverage in the US and the event will be shown on NBC at 7:30 EST. BBC will provide the live updates of the opening ceremony here.


The XXII Winter Olympics, which runs for the next 16 days in the Black Sea city of Sochi, will see athletes from around the world contest in 98 events.

Vladimir Putin, the president of the host nation, will take part in the opening ceremony. He will be accompanied by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.

The other top dignitaries to attend the event include Chinese President Xi Jinping, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

US President Barack Obama, British Prime Minister David Cameron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel will not make it to Sochi for the opening ceremony of the 2014 Winter Olympics.

Demitry Chernyshenko, President of the Organising Committees for the Olympic Games (OCOG) and International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach will also be in attendance on Friday.

The parade of athletes from each participating nation, led by a flag bearer, is a main event of the ceremony.

The delegations will enter the stadium in alphabetical order, except for Greece coming in first as the Olympics originated in the country.

Russia, the host nation, will enter at the end.

The final event of the day will be the lighting of the Olympic Flame. The torch will be passed on to the final athlete and the Flame will light up the Cauldron to mark the start of the event. The flame will burn throughout the Olympics, until the closing day on 23 February.