Alarms rang out across Britain on Friday to signal the ultimate countdown towards the Olympics, which open by having an exuberant and eccentric ceremony honoring the country within an explosion of dance, music and fireworks inspired by Shakespeare's "Tempest".
The 3-hour showcase produced by Oscar-winning "Slumdog Uniform" director Danny Boyle takes visitors on the journey from Britain's idyllic countryside with the muck from the Industrial Revolution and ending within an explosion of popular culture.
Viewed by 60,000 people in the primary Olympic stadium built-in a run-lower a part of east London along with a global audience in excess of a billion, the big event may have passages referred to by British Pm David Cameron as "spine-tingling".
The visitors is going to be advised to participate in sing-a-longs and help create spectacular visual moments in an event that sets a dark tone for that sporting extravaganza, when 16,000 sports athletes from 204 nations share the excitement of victory and despair of defeat with 11 million site visitors.
The Games will even answer the question on Britons' lips -- were seven many years of planning, construction and interruptions, along with a cost of $14 billion throughout among the country's worst recessions, really worthwhile?
"There is a huge sense of excitement and anticipation because Britain is ready to welcome the greatest show on Earth," said Cameron. "This is a great moment for our country so we must seize it."
There've, however, been bumps on the way.
Media coverage was until lately centered by security firm G4S's admission that could not provide enough pads for Olympic venues. 1000's of additional soldiers needed to be used in the last second, regardless of the company's multi-million-dollar contract in the government.
Counter-terrorism chiefs have performed lower fears of the major attack around the Games, and Cameron stated that a good Olympic games was his priority.
"This is the biggest security operation in our peacetime history, bar none, and we are leaving nothing to chance."
Suicide attacks on London in This summer, 2005, wiped out 52 people. This season the Games coincide using the 40th anniversary from the 1972 Munich massacre when 11 Israeli Olympic team people were wiped out by Palestinian militants.
Requires the official commemoration from the tragedy in the opening ceremony have to date been declined.
High-traffic in Manchester and severe delays on Britain's creaking train system have put into the grumbling.
A number of doping scams have damaged the Games' image within the buildup, with a minimum of 11 sports athletes banned to date, and Greek triple jumper Paraskevi Papachristou grew to become the Olympics' first "twitter victim" when she was withdrawn in the team over tweeted comments considered racist.
An earlier diplomatic faux pas, once the flag of Columbia made an appearance in a women's soccer match between North Korea and Colombia, motivated fuming North Korean gamers just to walk from the pitch and postponed kick-off by a lot more than an hour or so.
All of that is likely to be forgotten as attention around the globe turns to the opening ceremony, which begins at 2000 GMT and ends more than three hours later.
While Boyle has advised the 10,000 taking part volunteers and enormous crowds at rehearsals now to help keep the show a secret, some elements happen to be within the public domain.
Entitled "Isles of Question", it opens having a entertainment of bucolic bliss, filled with fields, hedges, sheep, geese, a shire equine, shepherdesses as well as a game title of village cricket.
The atmosphere then darkens as "England's green and pleasant land", from the poem by William Blake, makes method for the sooty fireplaces and smoking steel works from the "dark Satanic Mills", evoking the 1800s urban configurations of Dickens.
Stirring music from Britain's past and offer offers the soundtrack, which involves the forefront within the latter stages having a psychedelic celebration of popular culture including tunes, sitcoms and cinema classics.
Bike riders with illuminated "wings" circle the sector, developing a stunning effect for cameras suspended in the stadium roof.
Boyle's ode towards the National Health Service, a politically billed subject in Great Britan where individuals are psychologically associated with the perfect of the welfare condition, could make less sense to individuals watching from afar.
But a closing performance by ex-Beatle Paul McCartney must have global appeal for any ceremony which will contrast dramatically with Beijing's tightly choreographed, large-scale version.
Boyle had 27 million pounds ($42 million) to invest on his spectacular, well under half the total amount believed to possess been put in China in 2008.
You will find still lots of secrets, including who'll possess the recognition of lighting the Olympic cauldron, as soon as a symbol of the outlet from the Games and ending the Olympic torch's 8,000-mile journey the space and breadth of England.
On Friday, the torch made its in place the stream Thames aboard the royal barge Gloriana that was utilized in Full Elizabeth's Gemstone Jubilee in June.