The closing ceremony, which highlights Russian culture, pokes fun at the mishap during the opening ceremony in which one of the Olympic rings failed to completely illuminate.
Organizers of the Winter Olympics closing ceremony showed they had a good sense of humor. At the closing ceremony at Fisht Olympic Stadium on Sunday, February 23, dancers recreated the Olympic rings malfunction which happened earlier during the opening ceremony on February 7. At that time, one of giant snowflakes failed to transform into the fifth ring.
Five groups of dancers were supposed to form the five Olympic rings at the beginning of the closing ceremony. But one group of dancers purposefully did not complete the opening of the fifth ring right away, clearly poking fun at the technical glitch at the opening ceremony.
"We had to laugh about it, we had a few hundreds of high-tech tricks that worked, but one of the five most easiest didn't," said Konstantin Ernst, the creative director of the Sochi Games. "I think that every Olympics should have an unofficial brand on top of the official one: now both Vancouver and Sochi have one."
The closing ceremony, attended by Russian president Vladimir Putin and IOC president Thomas Bach, reflected Russian culture. Ernst said in a news conference earlier that day that while the opening ceremony was a "blockbuster," his closing ceremony would be "more down the arthouse avenue."
There was an upside down replica of a village where Marc Chagall, a Russian-French artist, was born and painted. Later, a ballet group performed "Scheherezade" as host Vladimir Pozner explained, "Ballet is very important in Russia. Ballet is a great expression of who the Russians really are. It demands incredible discipline but at the same time there is a wildness about it."
Three Olympic mascots, including the giant bear from the 1980 Summer Games in Moscow, were also featured. Later, children wearing yellow ensemble and holding yellow flowers came out and stood around the Big Bear, Big Hare and Big Leopard as opera singer Hibla Gerzmava floated across the sky and sang.
Firework spectacle ended the closing ceremony while NBC interviewed U.S. Olympic athletes in the stadium.
Russia came out on top after 16 days of competition, winning 33 medals including 13 gold. Team USA finished second in term of total medals with 28, including 9 gold.